In the information era, technology is all around us. It’s optimizing our everyday processes and changing how we live our lives. Like any other industry, event planning is going through its own technological evolution. While there are countless examples, I’ve gathered five ways technology is changing event planning below.
Before a guest gets to an event, they have an itinerary giving them all that they need to know about the event, this might look like a pamphlet, or more recently a webpage. However, event planners are rapidly switching to the latest technology to showcase what’s in store for the guest. By adopting augmented and virtual reality, event planners can virtually place guests onto the event floor, giving them a clear vision of what the event will showcase and where points of interest will be located. AR and VR tech is advancing as we speak, and it’s only a matter of time before guests will be able to attend events remotely.
Another routine part of any event is the check-in. An event check-in five years ago might’ve required a guest list and obnoxious paperwork, luckily they’ve become a thing of the past. Guests can now check-in to an event with nothing more than a QR code from their smartphone. Or even more futuristic, an event might utilize facial recognition to get guests through the door. Both facial recognition and QR code scanners are much quicker than old methods of check-in, meaning guests get into events quicker and have more patience for what comes next.
Having event staff is essential for guest clarity and for smooth operation, however often event staff is temporary and =is given little to no training. Sometimes guests have questions that event staff is unable to answer. This is why events are now coming equipped with artificial intelligence chatbots to greet guests and offer valuable information. While it might seem impersonal to replace a live person with AI, it has been found that people will ask more from a chatbot, than they would to people.
The typical way of conducting a Q&A in an event is characterized by awkwardly passing around a wired microphone to a select few guests, usually those who are self-promoting or representing an organization and don’t even have a question to ask. This issue has been, in part, alleviated by a couple of technological breakthroughs. Now event Q&As utilize throwable microphones, these are perfect for waking up a bored audience and giving them a fun platform to ask questions. Alternatively, event Q&A’s will take advantage of a polling smartphone app to quickly and easily get feedback from the room.
The world is shrinking, and we’re seeing more international businesses take place than ever before, which is why live interpreters are a normal part of most events. A live interpreter has always been necessary; however, it has never been beneficial. Now events have taken advantage of smartphone innovations to translate smarter. With this method, people can use a smartphone application and directly stream a translated version of the event speech into numerous languages.
Time waits for no one, luckily technology will keep advancing, and event planning will continue to optimize. The way people organize events will never be the same, and that’s a good thing! We’re happy that people and businesses will continue to connect like never before, making the unthinkable, practical.