The world of business is changing at a rapid pace. The world of meetings and events is no different. Event professionals and marketers have more tools, technologies, and platforms at their disposal to facilitate event organization and attendee engagement. Meanwhile, attendees have come to expect more than ever from their time and investment in events.
Event professionals and marketers must keep their eyes on the road ahead or risk falling out of favor with attendees, sponsors, and stakeholders. Here we highlight 5 big trends that we expect to shape the event management landscape in 2013.
Over the next few weeks we will write about each trend in greater detail. (Check back here for links to the full blog posts as they are published.)
1. It’s All About Me (the attendee, that is)
A personalized event experience is the new requirement for events as participants endeavor to consume “event content” in ways that are more meaningful to them. Attendees striving for inclusion, convenience, and value will be drawn to events that allow them to tailor an agenda to their ideals, access meaningful content, and engage with others who share similar interests. “It’s not any agenda, it’s my agenda.” This will be the mantra of attendees in the year ahead. Read original blog trend here.
2. I’m Here to Tell You…
We all now have the ability to discover, spin up, and share content. In today’s connected world, attendees aren’t just consuming the content that organizers dish out; they’re creating their own content in real-time and in their own voice. This paradigm forms the essence of an event where two-way engagement channels—Twitter, social, mobile, virtual, and real-time pulse, to name a few—help attendees feel included and in control. “We hear you. We respect you. You decide.” Event owners must embrace this language and formulate event experiences that bring the attendees’ voices and ideas to life.
3. It’s Really All About Us! (fellow attendees, that is)
Event owners tend to think of events first in terms of their own goals—selling their products, services, or ideas. In the end, however, it really boils down to attendees and their ideas of value, which are often defined by how effectively an event can bring sellers and buyers together, face-to-face. Attendees are ready to get to work, get it done, here and now. There’s no reason to wait anymore as real business value is created through face-to-face engagement at events. Today, intelligence-based appointment matching of attendees who share common business, professional, and social interests defines performance-driven events.
4. One One = Three
A significant transformation is allowing event professionals to shift focus away from a traditional emphasis on operational excellence, logistics, and expense management toward the true value of events as sales and marketing enablers. Integrated event planning and marketing automation technology will deepen and fully align event and marketing professionals as a united front to deliver profits and ROI.
5. Count Me In
In an era of big data, events generate a lot of it. Insights gained during the registration process alone deliver significant intelligence from which better decisions can be made. Add to this data collected through social media, mobile, website interactions, and more, and event owners quickly find themselves with a wealth of actionable intelligence. Analysis of brand awareness, lead generation, and advanced sales cycles will be grounded in event intelligence as the integration between marketing automation and event management deepens. As a result, the CMO Dashboard will truly light up with clear evidence of how events deliver ROI.
As 2013 gets underway, are you sure of how you will address these event management trends? What solutions will you call upon to help you? At Certain, we offer a comprehensive event management solution that enables organizations to easily plan, promote, manage, and track events—while fully engaging attendees—through an integrated, cloud-based platform.