The digital age is increasingly transforming how meetings are being planned and held. But that doesn’t mean face-to-face meetings are a thing of the past. Both large and small meetings remain relevant and provide a far richer experience. So how should meetings be approached in this day in age with technology changing at such a rapid pace? We’ve asked Corbin Ball, an international speaker, consultant and expert on the intersection of technology and productivity, to share his insight on how meetings are changing:
8 Meeting Tech Trends to watch for:
These are exciting times. The tech landscape is bubbling with ideas to help meeting planners, exhibitors, venues and other meeting participants do their jobs better and improve the attendee experience.
1. Online Bookings
Of the 1.8 million meetings held in the U.S. each year, small meetings (50 people or under) make up a large percentage of them. Events and venue management software companies offer online booking systems where users can search by venue type and size, including hotels, restaurants and even boats.
2. Find your way – with AR
Google Maps might be your go-to when it comes to getting around. But for booth-to-booth navigation in an exhibit hall, things get a little more tricky. Augmented reality (AR), a technology that superimposes a computer-generated image on a user's view, has joined the race. Typically, AR technology involves your mobile phone camera, but eventually AR glasses will help you navigate and interact with indoor spaces.
3. On-demand chatbots
If anything, the explosion of voice-activated systems such as Amazon’s Alexa and Google Home attest to the increasing capabilities of Chatbots. However, when it comes to crowded environments, the voice interface does not work well. Now, text-based systems are starting to emerge to answer questions, gather feedback and to engage attendees at events.
4. Digital planners
Data management systems are maturing. Cloud-based event technology and advanced APIs collect and analyze onsite data and connect them with CRM tools. Eventbrite, a basic consumer-oriented event invitation, registration and ticketing system, is one such planner. Other options have features like workflow maps and collaboration tools.
5. More hacking, more security
Recent data breaches point to increased and more sophisticated hacking activity. As a planner, make sure your registration company is PCI compliant and attendee information is safe. As an individual, use strong passwords, keep your anti-virus software up-to-date and consider multi-factor authentication.
6. Easy event check-in
Automated check-in terminals are becoming standard at many events. For smaller events, guest list check-in apps can eliminate cumbersome spreadsheets with many extras such as QR codes to confirm pass scanning and notifications when special guests arrive.
7. Personalized meetings
In the past, much of what happened at the event or tradeshow stayed at the event. But events and tradeshows are beginning to provide a goldmine of data on attendee interests, movements and interactions. This data can help meeting planners improve future events and create a richer, more personalized experience for attendees.
8. Real meetings aren’t going anywhere
Despite the increase in virtual meetings, face-to-face meetings and tradeshows will remain important. As long as attendees are informed, entertained and fed, event hosts can keep them engaged for days. The opportunities for networking, brainstorming, and relationship building are usually far greater with in-person meetings.
A staff as committed as you are
While technology is increasingly important to deliver a great experience, a personalized service, delivered through professional and experienced staff, is one of the most important factors for successful and memorable meetings and events. Driven by our brand promise 'Every Moment Matters', with Radisson Blu you can expect personal guidance and close attention to the details that matter to you – no matter how big or small your event is, or whether you go global or local.
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