Event Tech Trends That Matter in 2019
Did you know that 91% of tradeshow attendees say a great booth has a heavy influence on their buying decision? But with competition growing more and more each day, brands are finding that the old ways just aren’t cutting it anymore. Which is why learning about and implementing event tech trends (like the ones featured in this article) is so important. Now that 2019 is halfway over, it’s time to update your B2B event practices so that you’ll remain highly competitive at events for the rest of the year (and beyond).
Where We’ve Been
In recent years we’ve seen an emphasis on creating B2B event experiences that break the mold. In 2017 hosting events at nontraditional venues and placing an emphasis on local flavor was the norm. Marketers were sure that attendees were bored with the old model and that revolutionizing the whole system was necessary. And they’re not wrong.
It worked – for a couple years.
Today we see that it’s not about overthrowing these highly trafficked and in demand event types for something new altogether. Instead it’s about creating a revolution from the inside out.
While some event goals will still benefit from going against the grain, it’s time for brands to get back on track and provide excellent, high-quality experiences in the traditional structures audiences know and love.
As you can see from today’s trends, we now have plenty of great tools at our disposal for creating memorable and exciting interactions between buyers and sellers. Taking advantage of the event technologies currently on the market is promising for the present (and future) of our industry.
Where We Are Now
Future trends in event planning have already been predicted by industry experts. And they all seem to fall within the three main focus points of B2B event planning this year, which you’ll see as categories below. Now without further ado, here are 10 event trends you should consider investing in sooner than later.
10 Event Trends for 2019: Key Technology Rentals You Need at Events
Immersive experiences at trade shows really took off this year. Previously we’ve seen a lot of talk about live streaming and connecting fans to social media with real time incentives during the course of the event. And while these methods are still great for engaging fans, nothing beats the magic of a true immersive experience.
Technologies that make this all possible are more available and easier to access than ever. Which is why you should consider incorporating one or more of these event trends into your next corporate get together:
Projector rental will quickly become more and more popular as trade show audiences look for new ways to interact with brands in this new age of entertainment and business. From business meetings to booth displays, projectors make for a practical and highly interesting addition to any event marketing design. Companies like RentiPads offer a wide variety of projectors as well as installation options. If you’re not sure which projectors are right for your event, don’t be afraid to ask our team for their professional opinion and we’ll point you towards the best equipment possible.
2. Voice Tech
We already know that voice activated technology will change content marketing but it’s very promising for live, in-person events too. They’re useful for running booths as well as creating experiences for guests. And if you’re looking for some creative ways to use it, the voice first events market has more than doubled in the U.S. since last year, so you’ll find plenty of great ideas from leading brands who host and participate in them.
3. 360 Degree Experiences
Creating original content isn’t a trend we see dying off any time soon. But thanks to 360 degree videos, your brand can still stand out from the crowd. To create a 360 degree experience, you’ll need to:
- Start with an on brand concept that is both entertaining and aligns with your specific event goals.
- Hire a film crew, coordinate shoot dates, and secure one or more locations.
- Coordinate voice-over work and special effects (if needed).
- Design navigation interfaces.
- And, for brands selling physical products, 3D modeling of the featured item(s).
It’s a lot of work but the pay off is high. If you don’t have any experience creating content like this, you can always hire a professional team to do it for you.
There are some event features that truly leave a mark on audiences. They’re the ones that attendees talk about when their colleagues ask how the experience was. Memorable and creative, event wow factors are usually created by – you guessed it – event technology.
And because today’s event goers need something a little extra special to make the whole event really pop, it’s no wonder why these event trends are so popular right now. Here are the ones you really need to know (and consider using) for your next event:
4. Digital Kiosks
Digital kiosks are both event branding and live demonstrations of apps, videos, and more. They can also be used to engage audiences, conduct guest surveys, display product models, and collect newsletter sign ups. Basically anything you’d want to do or share at your event can be completed with the help of digital kiosks, which is why this highly versatile product is so in demand for event rentals this year.
5. LED Video Walls
Video walls are an impressive addition to any trade show or conference booth. They catch the eye, prompting guests to stop and watch what’s on the screen. You can display advertisements, product or service demos, customer testimonials and more. Even if you don’t have a large event coming up soon you can easily rent LED video walls for your next presentation or training seminar.
6. Touch Screen & Smart TV Monitors
Whether you need a 90” TV monitor display for your next conference appearance or a 5’ x 4’ touch screen wall, these elegant presentation tools will enhance thousands of event booths, seminars, and VIP experience lounges throughout the year. Rent a monitor for your next event to see the difference.
7. Digital Signage
Kiosk displays are far more interesting than traditional booth signage and give you plenty of marketing options to boot. They’re easy to set up, fit well into most standard booth dimensions, and allow you to feature videos or images not otherwise displayed at the event. They also have a small footprint and are very portable, so it’s an easy transition to make should you want to start using them.
The Millennial & Gen Z Difference
Millennials now make up the majority of the corporate workforce. As a result, they’re changing the face of B2B marketing. And Gen Z is set to take over the majority of the market by the end of the year. Which means you’ll need to adapt your event strategy to include these demographics if you haven’t already.
Looking at the known values these two generations hold, it’s no surprise why the following trends are here to stay:
8. Sustainability Tools
Efficient use or management of food, beverages, water, energy, and waste are all the rage with the younger set these days. When thinking about event design, your plan should include at least two significant sustainability initiatives. Regardless of your event budget, there are plenty of ways to incorporate these practices.
9. Augmented Reality
AR can be used at your trade show booth to educate and entertain your audience all at the same. Whether it’s a product tutorial, a clever optical illusion, or a memorable piece of branded content, AR opens up a lot of opportunity for creative marketing. Basically anything you can do with VR, you can do with AR, it all just depends on your goals.
10. Apple Products
iPads and iPhones are near and dear to the hearts of Millennials. In fact, Fortune named it the number one brand the people of this generation are most emotionally attached to. So in addition to be highly convenient, easy to use, and impressive to customers, using iPads at your next event might score you brown points with the Millennials because they love Apple so darn much.
Having covered these main trends worth buying into for the year, here are some honorable mentions worth knowing about. They’re all interesting and practical additions to standard event practices that will probably become more popular as time goes on.
5 Bonus Event Trends: 2019 & Beyond
You might already start seeing these tools and trends before the year is over, if you haven’t already.
1. Facial Recognition
Increased security has become a priority for any gathering space in the U.S. Facial recognition technology can be used to streamline the check-in process and keep the guestlist tidy. Zenus Biometrics is one of the many companies who now specialize in this type of software, most of which is specifically created for events and event venues. To use the technology, guests just have to walk up to a kiosk, smile when prompted, and confirm that their photo matches the name that comes up on the screen.
2. Improved Language Translators
If your business wants to grow B2B sales online and in person, you need to have a language solution available. Thankfully, however, when it comes to communicating across language barriers, brands and event planners have a lot of options these days. Live, in-person translators, mobile apps, and handheld devices are all viable solutions at a multilingual event, you just have to pick one that fits your budget. The good news is that recent developments in the language tech world have yielded some incredibly cost effective results, which you can search for on sites like G2Crowd, where real users have rated, ranked, and weighed in on each solution’s pros and cons.
3. RFID Tech
RFID (which stands for radio-frequency identification) are said to improve event guests’ experience – all they have to do is scan their badge, card, or wristband and they’re all checked in. Many events (like the ones on this list) are already using the technology and seeing positive results. Besides convenience, RFID technology also helps provide real-time guest data insights, allows guests to go cashless, and can be used as engagement tools for games or contests through your sponsors.
4. VR Venue Walkthroughs
Event venue trends in 2019 have changed the way guests experience events but they have also transformed how planners organize them. The traditional event planning process involves a thorough walkthrough several months or up to a year in advance of the event to make sure all the structural and procedural needs of the event will be met. They often require event planners to travel and can be tricky to schedule.
But because the event venue is a huge factor in the gathering’s success, it simply must be done, regardless of how expensive or time consuming it is. Nowadays, however, some venues are giving event planners the option to do a virtual walkthrough thanks to VR technology and the power of 360 degree video. This revolutionary event planning practice is just one of the many ways the craft will evolve in the upcoming decade.
5. Gaming Laptops
Gaming laptops have gained popularity with gaming enthusiast and are particularly in great demand at events for networked games. These are very high end laptops with special graphics and very high resolution screens. Event Technology rentals specializes in custom laptops for gaming. Laptops for games are juiced up with additional memory to support multiple players. To rent gaming laptops, contact dedicated sales team at companies specializing in events.
Main Takeaways: Event Technology Trends
Regardless of which trends you plan to adopt, there are certain key ideas you can take away for all your corporate event ideas moving forward. Whether you’re hosting a conference or renting a booth at a trade show, keep these trending practices in mind:
- Don’t be afraid to try new gadgets. Most event budgets have room for at least one of the above suggested event tech solutions. Commit your brand to trying out one new tool per event and you’ll always be ahead of the curve. Making it a habit ensures that you and your team will continue to educate yourself on these topics while also keeping an eye out for the products that best serve your target audience.
- Think outside the box to achieve event goals. A lot of these trends are brand new and there’s still plenty of room for discovery with each one. Creatively problem solve with the above technology and you’ll be considered a true innovator.
- Always include the interests of your key demographics when planning your events. Forward thinking event planners and marketers recognize that, even if Millennials and Gen Z aren’t their current target, there might be generations that come after them that will love their products. Lay the groundwork now by adapting to these trends if you want to maintain the test of time.
At the end of the day, event trends only matter if you use them. For more on what types of event technology rentals are available, check out everything RentiPads has to offer.
Acknowledgement: This blog is contributed by Maria Waida and edited by Jim Jain