The App Takes Over…Mobile and Technology Trends in the Events Industry

Published by on November 18, 2014 7:30 am
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A colleague of mine, Richard Reid, likes to pose the question “How many events do you think are mobile enabled?” Often times people respond with “15 percent,” “50 percent,” or even “80 percent.” As it turns out, the question is a trick…it’s actually 100 percent.Mobile

Keep in mind the question was not how many events have a mobile app, but rather how many events are mobile enabled. Fact is, every event has a mobile component – attendees are using their mobile devices at the event whether or not there is a mobile application for the event. If an event does not provide a mobile platform, attendees will leverage other platforms.

Recent research shows that the average smart phone user downloads 25 apps. By contrast, a recent survey by the IMEX Group showed that 60 percent of the event planners surveyed report using a mobile app for at least one of their events of the past two years.

Mobile apps certainly add to the experience at events and can be much more than a replacement for the paper agenda catalog. As a matter of fact, in my opinion, if that’s all a mobile app does then it is not a successful deployment. Fortunately, the “interactivity” of event app is on the increase and this is the secret sauce in my opinion. Face-to-face interactions are the goal at any event, and the technology (app) should facilitate that vs. hinder that.

WearableSuccessful deployment of beacon technology may also have a large impact on the effectiveness of mobile interactions moving forward.  Some big names are involved in this (Apple, Qualcomm, PayPal) primarily in the retail space, but implications could be huge in the event space…sending updates, notifications, or opportunities for further engagement based upon proximity. Speaking of proximity, the prospects of integrating “wearable” technology might be the next step here as well.  I always wonder about having attendees looking at their smart phone or tablet continuously – seems counter to the very face-to-face experience we work so hard to design. But, if our watches, bracelets, name badges, and the like are also integrated, what might that do to change things? It might give event planners the data and tools to revolutionize the experience.

With so many opportunities that extend well beyond today’s definition of a mobile app…I, for one, am very excited about the technological design of meetings and events moving forward. If you are also excited at how technology is being used to increase the amount of interactivity at events, let me know about it.

I would love to hear your opinion about how these new technologies are helping or hurting the overall event experience.

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Giving Back…

Published by on November 4, 2014 7:39 am
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I was thinking back over my recent travels and realized how impressed I was with not only the quality of the meetings I attended in October (Dreamforce and IMEX America) but at the giving nature of the organizations and attendees. Dreamforce created a “One Million Meals” initiative (#DFGIVES) that asked[...] Read More

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Freeman Clients Recognized at the Trade Show Executive Gold 100 Awards & Summit

Published by on October 28, 2014 7:04 am
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Last week, Freeman executives had the pleasure of attending Trade Show Executive’s Gold 100 Awards & Summit in Dana Point, CA. The event honored the 100 largest trade shows in the U.S. based on net square feet of paid exhibit space. We extend our warm congratulations to all of the[...] Read More

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Dreamforce: A Marketer and Technologist’s Dream

Published by on October 21, 2014 1:59 am
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As I return from Dreamforce 2014, Salesforce’s annual user conference, I am not only energized by this event, but in awe of the Salesforce marketing machine. This was my first Dreamforce conference as an attendee, but it will not be my last. Below are some thoughts and takeaways from this[...] Read More

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The Industrial Revolution Creating New “Buzz” for the Energy Sector

Published by on October 14, 2014 7:03 am
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Over the past seven years, key industries within the Raw Materials & Science sector – specifically oil and gas – have experienced an industrial revolution thanks to technology advancements in hydraulic fracturing, aka “fracking.” The technique has been credited with unlocking America’s natural gas supply by providing abundant energy that[...] Read More

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Sustainability Lifecycle: Planning a “Second Life” for Event Materials

Published by on October 10, 2014 7:27 am
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Producing an event often requires truckloads of equipment, materials and supplies. Long before the final dumpster is hauled to the landfill, key decisions can reduce waste when planning an event. At Freeman, the 5R’s: Rethink, Reduce, Reuse, Repurpose and Recycle are part of our company culture. We look for ways[...] Read More

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Congratulations to the Scientists Who Perfected the LED and Transformed The Lighting and Events Industry

Published by on October 8, 2014 12:43 pm
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The Nobel Prize for Physics has been awarded for the most transformational product in the last two decades in the live event space, incubating a metamorphosis in creative production design. It may have taken thirty years, but recognition has finally been bestowed to three scientists in the form of the[...] Read More

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Extending the (Customer Service) Experience

Published by on October 7, 2014 10:38 am
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We often talk about extending the experience of the events and shows we produce – in particular, extending to virtual events. But what about extending the customer service experience? Freeman is consistently developing innovative new ways to enhance the customer experience – FOL, PLANTOUR, Concierge Elite…you get the picture. However,[...] Read More

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Three Key Factors Driving Growth for Events in the Technology Sector

Published by on October 2, 2014 9:25 am
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As industries across the board look to global economic cues to help forecast the future, perhaps none has been as laser-focused on interpreting the data as the Communication & Information Technology* sector. “This sector has been volatile with the declines but is making a very strong climb and has a[...] Read More

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In Your Face?

Published by on September 25, 2014 1:57 am
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Sometimes the world we love best – the world of Face-to-Face Marketing – appears a bit daunting to attendees. Specifically, some of them dread the conferences we help create.  Case in point: the Wall Street Journal just published an insightful article about the strategy one woman uses to approach the[...] Read More

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CEIR Predict: The Changing Event Landscape

Published by on September 17, 2014 4:59 pm
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Future-Proofing Your Events: Make Way for Millennials “Good times are ahead!” declared Senior Economist Ryan Sweet of Moody’s Analytics during an opening keynote on the global economy at the CEIR Predict conference this September. The daylong conference analyzed and provided updated forecasts from the CEIR Index – a key performance[...] Read More

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Customer Service is Key to Drive for Five

Published by on August 15, 2014 4:43 pm
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By Katy Wild Executive Vice President | Customer Experience Freeman For the fifth consecutive year, Freeman has been recognized for customer service excellence by J.D. Power as part of their Certified Contact Center ProgramSM. While this is the fifth time Freeman has been recognized by J.D. Power, it’s always been[...] Read More

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Five Tech Trends Impacting F2F

Published by on June 30, 2014 4:20 pm
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Optimizing the Next Generation of Event Technology by Richard Reid Vice President | Digital Services Freeman Audio Visual Digital devices, platforms and tools impact the way we communicate, interact and manage everything. At Freeman, we often field questions from clients about different technology they read about in the industry media or hear about[...] Read More

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It’s Time To Rethink Your Event Models

Published by on June 3, 2014 1:24 pm
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This entry first appeared on the blog of our colleagues at FreemanXP Are you ready for the Face-to-Face Experience Revolution? Millennials aren’t the only ones expecting better experiences at events, all your audiences expect more than ever before. Relevant and engaging formats. Participatory experiences. Personalized and on-demand content. Events that[...] Read More

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Experiential Marketing Heats Up

Published by on May 30, 2014 12:41 pm
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This entry first appeared on the blog of our colleagues at FreemanXP By Alison Jenks Event marketing research reports show the industry is on the rise To reach customers, increase awareness, and drive sales, brands are turning to high-touch integrated campaigns in bigger ways than ever before. The winning combination[...] Read More

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Meaningful Connections

Published by on May 23, 2014 8:59 am
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Truth be told, I am a sentimentalist. I don’t wish that I lived in the past nor do I yearn for days gone by, but I am easily nostalgic and it is meaningful for me to consider times and places that have had an impact on my life. I find[...] Read More

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Five Top of Mind Topics from Event Marketing Summit

Published by on May 15, 2014 4:55 pm
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Plus: The Health of the Experiential Marketing Industry (it’s good!) Event marketers from around the globe descended on Salt Lake City last week to network, learn, and keep a finger to the pulse of all things experiential at Event Marketing Summit. The packed three-day schedule included workshops, sessions, speed briefings, and[...] Read More

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The Future of Site Visits? Virtual, of Course!

Published by on May 13, 2014 8:30 am
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We’re now adding the drone option in select meeting spaces and facilities to get a high-definition virtual tour of the look and feel of a venue from the sky

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When the Left Brain Meets the Right Brain: The Fruits of Collaboration

Published by on May 6, 2014 1:50 pm
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How can a company known primarily for flawless logistics and world-class problem solving also be a creative powerhouse? Ask Nancy Ross, Senior VP of Creative and Freeman Solutionist. Like a matchmaker, Nancy helps bring logistics and creative teams together to create magical engagements — and real-world results for Freeman clients.[...] Read More

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Five FAQs For Your Pre-Show Planning

Published by on May 1, 2014 7:42 am
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Whether you’re a first-time exhibitor, or trade show veteran, we could all benefit by knowing about the nuts and bolts of being on show site. Check out five questions and answers below to get the lay of the land. 1. What do I do when I arrive at show site?[...] Read More

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