Event Tech Trends of 2018

 

Here at Launch Interactions, we try our very best to make sure we are at the forefront of event technology. Working closely with our partners to ensure we have the most up to date and popular trends available for your event goals. Heres our favorite trends hitting the event scene…

1. Videography & Live Streaming

Video has now become vital for events, from growing your audience to marketing and promoting the event, its one of the most engaging and cost-effective tools you can use. By 2020, it’ll account for 80% of global internet traffic. And it holds peoples attention 5x longer than still images, making it a fantastic medium for engaging attendees long after your event is over.

When you live stream event videos, viewers are engaged x8 longer than recorded video. And unlike what you might think, it doesn’t have to break the bank. There are many options out there for those on a budget, from using Facebook Live, YouTube Live or buying inexpensive live cameras like the Mevo https://getmevo.com/ What platform you use very much depends on your goals and which channel makes the most sense for your event.

And the best thing about live video is that after the event, you can take all the footage and repurpose it for different marketing materials. You can create teaser videos for next years event and engage followers on social media all year round. But why do this?

  • Users spend 3x more time and comment 10x more when a video is live, according to Facebook.
  • 30% of people who watch a live stream of an event will attend the same event the following year, according to Digitell.

Once you have your event video, don’t be afraid to feature it on your event page. According to Eventbrite research, one of the top two places consumers bounce to after visiting your event page is YouTube.

Why? Because they’re looking for videos that will show them what to expect from your event. By showcasing video on your event page, you can encourage more event-goers to register instead of leaving the page.

2. VR Technology

VR is everywhere! No one can escape it. Least of all in the events industry. Just last year it was on the rise, its now exploded into the mainstream and is already seeing many exciting use cases in events. Here we list five of the biggest VR trends we’re seeing and how they are affecting the events industry right now.

  • The Virtual Event: A lot of the VR buzz right now is around sporting events like the Rio Olympics and Super Bowl LI. Live music is also responding well with artists like Lil Wayne supporting the revolution. VR enables remote spectators to experience the event not only as if they were there themselves, but closer to the action than ever before. The virtual event space also brings with it plenty of opportunity for partnerships and co-branding. A deeper level of immersion can bring a deeper level of engagement. Subsequently, this leads to lots of opportunities for sponsorship and branding. The ability to live stream VR content straight to viewers’ social feeds also makes it easier for that branding to reach a broader audience in real-time.
  • Enhancing the Live Event Experience: VR can also be used to enhance the experience for event attendees, as demonstrated by Intel at CES 2017. For Intel CEO, Brian Krzanich’s keynote, the venue was equipped with over 200 headsets, bringing a virtual world to a real-world event experience.
  • Virtual Reality Light: Riding merrily on the coattails of virtual reality is 360º video. For the viewer, 360º video has a much lower barrier to entry than full VR, requiring only a mobile device to experience the virtual world – albeit through the window that is their mobile device. Another area where we’re beginning to see a real rise in 360º technology is venue tours. This is a real plus for event planners doing venue research. While it may not be as good as going there yourself (yet), it can provide a good opportunity for triage.
  • Mobile VR: It’s a mobile-first world these days so it should come as no surprise at all to find that for many, the entry point for VR is their mobile phone. The range of VR options for mobile users is huge, starting with Snapchat’s VR Lite option, all the way up to Samsung’s Gear VR. For event planners, it’s worth remembering that almost everyone has the capability to access some level of VR via their mobile device.
  • Social Media as a Gateway to VR: As demonstrated by Twitter’s partnership with the Oscars, social media is very much proving to be the gateway for live streamed events. Further illustrating the point, Snapchat also provided a unique view of the Golden Globes via their Spectacles. High profile examples aside, social media also gives control back to the user. For this reason, your event attendees could also provide a VR or gateway to your event via social media. Facilitating this in the right way could prove to be hugely beneficial.

The event industry is now awash with great examples of VR and although it’s a little too soon to call it mainstream, it appears that we are reaching the tipping point. The question now is not if, but when and how you will be using VR in your events.

3. Beacons

Beacon technology, also called iBeacon or location mapping, is a technology developed to track user’s position on a micro-local scale and push notifications and contextual advertisements to them based on their location. Smart devices communicate with beacons placed in the physical world through a Bluetooth signal and react accordingly. It is reported that 565 Million beacons will be shipped annually by 2021.

The Beacon technology offers great benefits to the events industry. It can help you identify the traffic flow on your stand, identify low and high traffic areas through heatmaps which is invaluable to plan stand layouts. Another cool application is the potential offer of personalized deals and messages to visitors. You can even check-in attendees.

4. Social Media

You’ve probably already noticed that most events in 2017 included some form of social media engagement – whether it be a fully-equipped Twitter wall or an event hashtag. While this might not be a new phenomenon at events, live social media integration is becoming a necessity.

This trend reflects the projected shift in 2018 to a greater emphasis on time-sensitive content – satisfying the desire to be part of events at the time they happen. Not only this, but live streaming can help not only with live experiences but also with brand awareness. Moreover, live streaming and social media walls are primarily crowdsourced. So you can curate generated content and display your successes to potential customers while accessing the views, experiences, and stories of your customers.

When it comes to measuring the success of events, social media interaction and live streaming is the event marketer’s answer. Using this tool, marketers can analyze feedback and interaction to form an understanding of who their event customer is, as well as help to create a better experience in the future.

 

Leave a comment

contact