8 Ways to Amaze Attendees With Cutting-Edge Event Technology Tools
You may have heard the term “experiential marketing” before. This refers to marketing tactics that focus on creating a full, sensory experience for users, rather than a passive experience — here are some famous examples. But the idea of experiences as a solid way of selling products or services has bled over into the events industry. How? With the idea of experiential events. Rather than having an event or conference that asks attendees to sit and absorb information through a traditional lecture format, there’s a movement toward an experience-filled, or experiential, format. When executed well, this makes events more engaging, more smooth, and is likely to impress your attendees.
Here are a few pieces of innovative technology that you can integrate into your next event so that it feels more experiential — and just plain cool.
VR and AR Tech for Event Engagement
It probably comes as no surprise that we’re starting with VR and AR technology. In fact, here are four ways we think that VR is changing the way we live, work, and play. VR technology, in particular, is an ideal way to increase engagement in events of any size or type — it can take your standard event and make it experiential with the use of a headset and an app.
For example, take the Oculus Go headset. It’s wireless and provides 360-degree viewing capabilities. You could employ the Oculus Go as a helpful tool if you wanted your attendees to go on a virtual tour of a specific space or get what feels like the “real” experience of traveling somewhere — without having to do the actual traveling (a real benefit during these uncertain times). Anheuser-Busch, for example, used VR technology to take SXSW attendees on a VR brewery tour. They donned headsets to “walk” the brewery, felt cool breezes when they went into refrigerators, and at the end, they were given (real) samples of beer. It’s hard to compare that experience to a slideshow with photos of the brewery.
As an added benefit, VR can also help event planners before the conference or event takes place. With apps like AllSeated, you can use VR and AR to create virtual tours, visualize social distancing, plan seating charts, and more. VR technology is new enough on the events scene that attendees will be engaged, whether the event is in-person or not. Plus, there are plenty of rentable options available for attendees.
Event Content Curation Technology
Gone are the days of taking photos and compiling them into a presentation for marketing purposes. Rather, attendees are now used to being able to see the “conversation” about any topic or event in real-time. Take the trending topics on Twitter, for example.
You can provide this same experience with the idea of attendee content curation. Provide an event, conference, or festival hashtag and encourage your attendees to tweet and share photos and videos during the event. Then, using a few innovative app options, you can seamlessly compile the photos and videos that they share into one production — perfect for increasing engagement (people want to see their photos!) and for promoting future events. It’s a win-win.
Amondo, for example, takes users’ photos, videos, and comments about one specific event and compiles them into what they call an “imprint.” Their imprints are striking to see — they feature still photos, live videos, and more in one cool place that can be shared. It would make for an engaging way to look back on each event’s day or the event as a whole. Plus, you can integrate quizzes and other engaging elements to the software as your event plays out.
Similarly, Eversnap combines attendee photos and videos and places them into a shared album. Users can add them manually, but Eversnap also pulls directly from the event hashtag on Instagram and Twitter. That way, users can easily access and view the images to look back on the day or the event. They also provide the option for a live stream, so users get the pleasure of viewing attendee photos and videos throughout the event, if they’d like.
Gamification for Events
Gamification for events is a whole world in and of itself. With a little creativity and the right tools, there are countless ways that you can integrate games into your event or conference. There’s good reason to do so: research shows that games can impact learning because they make the learning process more active and therefore more engaging.
If your event contains a room full of adults (whether real or virtual), try games like trivia or a scavenger hunt. Trivia questions can be tailored to your event’s focus and integrated into presentations or event software. Or, for a fun team-building exercise during a fully virtual event or conference, there are plenty of virtual trivia software options available like BreakoutIQ and TriviaHub.
Scavenger hunts can provide numerous benefits: if you hide clues or tokens in places you want your attendees to visit, like exhibitor or sponsor booths, for example, you can get them to go there. Scavenger hunts also get your attendees moving, and if you put people on teams, they can be an effective team-building exercise. SocialPoint provides software that creates trivia and scavenger hunts for your event — you just provide your details and go from there. And in a world where outdoor events are currently safer than indoor ones, Smart Hunts allows you to create a scavenger hunt that takes you across a city or neighborhood. It’s not as customizable for your event’s content, but it’s great for encouraging team rapport.
Whether your event is in person, hybrid, or fully remote, there are innovative games that are sure to “wow” your attendees. Many of them can be combined with VR technology or used via software so that they’re just as easily accessible from home. Or if you’re hosting in person, these options provide the ability to combine physical movement with attendee online presence — another engagement boost.
The right software can take your event from simple to experiential — and wow your attendees in the process. We think that with innovative apps and the hardware to support them, experiential events are the way of the future.
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