If ever there was an industry that was forever changing, evolving and adopting new methods for each aspect of the market, it is the events industry. With the industry worth £42.3billion to the UK economy, it is no wonder organisations are constantly thinking up new ideas to ensure that their events stand out from the crowd in order to gain the economic benefits. However, with the economic difficulties that the UK has recently undergone, Brexit and the downward value of the pound, this has meant companies are tightening their belts on their budgets for extras such as events, as these are not considered to be a primary form of business to retain in a tightening budget.
Taking a look at what past trends have developed and what 2016 brought to the playing field it can be seen that there are a few game changers for events that organisers should consider when planning this year’s calendar.
With virtual realities industry having grown considerably in 2016, as large corporations such as Google, Facebook, Sony and Samsung have invested into the technology, it has become easier to incorporate VR into events. Event organisers will most likely find ways to include these into the event, be that with the marketing prior to the event or during the event itself.
Whilst drones have been around for decades, it is only recently that they have become a phenomena, this is due to the technology having become more available to those with lower budgets. Recently it has been seen that live drone streaming can have positive impacts on your event security as the security team can survey the entire grounds from the air, foreseeing crowd control issues before the issue arises and can become a mobile WIFI connector for those areas that receives weak signals.
With most attendees owning smartphones which have applications such as Siri or Alexa most find it inconvenient to search continuously for the data through the event apps. By incorporating an artificial concierge this will create a more harmonious user experience throughout the event.
Real Time Shared Learning
What with most organisations having their databases online in the ‘cloud’, why not incorporate this into conferences? Have a specific shared drive for all attendees to post and share their work during the event; it is an interactive and real time method of learning. They will also be able to gain access to the presentations and notes from the speakers, allowing for a more personal experience of learning.
An alternative method to marketing is not to market. By organising invite only events, creates the illusion of grandeur behind the event. The Bilderberg meeting has been organised for world leaders since 1954 and has never been advertised, only invitation, there have been several scandals as a result, creating a real intrigue behind the event.
What with attendees wanting to choose which conference speaker to watch, why not offer them the opportunity to sit in one room together and listen via headphones to a choice of speakers? 1 device, as many channels as you like, and the attendees chooses which they prefer to tune into. This allows the attendees to be fully in charge with what they wish to learn, whilst limiting the number of rooms required for the conference.
Need for Speed
A necessity in 21st century is fast WIFI connections, with the average attendee owning 3 devices, a phone, laptop and tablet, venues must be seen to update their infrastructures to accommodate these levels of connectivity.
With the trend of workplaces becoming increasingly informal, venues for events have to offer this informality too. As a result, creative venues such as private lofts, photo studios and art galleries are becoming increasingly popular for a range of events, not just creative events. This is to offer delegates an alternative to the mundane and a surprise for the meetings.
What with competition fierce amongst convention centres, new centres are being built closer to the city centres. Sydney’s ICC was built in the heart of the city at Darling Harbour, allowing delegates to gain easy access through to the vast public transportation links and to meet local businesses whilst in the city. It has created a greater relationship between those businesses, allowing for a more harmonious city.