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Events & Conferencing news

Mobile, online collaboration leads the way in events management

It used to be that turning up to an event or social function was just that. A person would register, show up on the day, network, and have a few drinks and leave. However, with the advent of social media, events have transcended from simply counting the number of people who attend, to becoming far more experiential, where attendees are actually leaving events excited.
To achieve a memorable event, marketing teams should be rethinking their strategy to include online collaborative tools such as video streaming, Facebook, Pinterest, Instagram and Twitter for example, as these are great platforms to encourage and foster communication between attendees and exhibitors. Through these mediums, 'the world is your oyster', as you begin to fully understand this new generation of consumers, as these are channels that they use willingly and frequently to communicate.

© denphumi - Fotolia.com
No boundaries

The most obvious benefit of online collaboration is that it gives people who are not in the same location the ability to work together on projects. Since several companies have offices in multiple cities and countries, it's important to find ways to keep all the people working on a project informed and engaged.

Not only that, corporate events can also present many challenges, both financially and logistically, with aspects such as travel costs, hotel rooms and food expenses often needing to be factored into a corporate budget. With advancements in virtual interactive streaming, event planners can now cut company costs and improve efficiency by hosting events in the cloud, which has also simplified the complex task of event management.

Mobile addiction

Mobile and corresponding apps, keep social media in the palm of every attendee's hand and help word-of-mouth extend further during and after an event.

Through the use of mobile, there is the opportunity to create pre-event buzz that can start at the registration stage, where attendees can share the event within their own networks, as they sign up and more importantly keep the conversation about your brand alive well after the event has taken place.

Incentivising can also work, allowing you to reward attendees for sharing event information. Being involved in the content of an event, is also ensuring attendees take away far more value from the entire experience, as if they have interactive engagement with content that they feel is relevant to them, then they are likely to share it with their own social networks.

Participation has also been redefined, where people who cannot attend can still get involved with tie-ins to real-time discussions, social communities, Twitter #hashtags and other event groups that monitor attendee engagement and discussions. A shining example of this is augmented reality.

Through this, you can register attendees with face recognition technologies, integrate event floor plans, display products virtually and 'teleport' people to where you require them to be - all the while using graphics, sounds, real time feedback and smells that layer the natural world around your guests. When attendance is not always possible, event planners who integrate virtual interactive streaming/attendance options, open the doors to a greater audience, even a global audience can be accessed without the associated high costs.

Learning curve

By using all of these platforms, event planners can use the information and audience analytics to measure attendees likes, dislikes and comments, all of which can help grow attendance, disseminate learning's about their audience and create experiences where brands are not just talking to the attendees, but listening and actively interacting with their community.

In 2014, it's important to ensure that social media collaboration forms part of your events management strategy, to ensure you are able to create an exciting story around your event and continue engaging with your audience.

About Jessica McEndoo

Executive at at Experience iT
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