With so many developments in our global industry, IBTM insights brings you the stories that hit closest to home and have a lasting impact. Read on for our take on some of the event industry’s hottest news.
LinkedIn endorses face to face with new event app
Leading social networking website, LinkedIn, is expanding its services by trialing a new ‘real world’ events feature, after expressing the importance of face-to-face meetings to its members on its website.
“One of the things we hear from LinkedIn members is how important face-to-face meetings are to build relationships with their peers, colleagues, mentors, and other people they work with. In fact, our data shows that nearly 80% of LinkedIn members consider professional networking to be important to new opportunities and success.”
The LinkedIn Events feature is being trialed in New York and San Francisco before a global roll out. The aim is to make it easier for LinkedIn members to build their professional relationships in-person.
Though the bods behind LinkedIn Events claim there is more to come in the future, initially, the platform will enable users to create events and provide all details; join events; promote events and invite people from their network; manage events and allow attendees to talk between themselves and share photos and videos before, during and after the event. Attendees can also see the guest list, search to see who is going to an event and learn more about them.
The Event Industry has a New Voice
If you want to know what technologies will be integrating with events in the future, you can do worse than look at what the big tech companies in Silicon Valley are doing for the home now, and it seems Amazon is hedging its bets on voice enabled connected technology.
At a special event at its headquarters last month, the leading tech-giant unveiled a slew of new gadgets and services, many of which were centered around the idea of enabling people to talk to connected devices. For example, along with bigger, better, more capable and more integrated versions of its Echo smart speaker, such as the Echo Wall Clock, powered by Amazon’s Alexa virtual assistant, Alexa is also integrated into a connected microwave oven that obeys voice commands and places food orders.
Now, if you’re wondering what all this has to do with the business of events, bear in mind that Amazon also launched software that better enables developers to build Alexa into devices of all kinds. One company in the US, Shepard, has already got in on the voice-enabled act by launching eventVOICE, an artificial intelligence platform that acts as a voice-based, personalised assistant to event organisers and delegates. Through eventVOICE, delegates have access to voice-demand customer service, allowing them to personalise their event and engage with the tool for a variety of reasons, including printing badges, creating agendas, finding exhibitors and attendees, and answering routine questions.
With Amazon leading the way by embedding voice-enabled and connected technology into every day devices, you can expect ‘voice’ to be integrated throughout events, with delegates registering by talking to a device, passing security with voice recognition and finding their way to exhibits and attractions with help from a digital personal assistant answering their questions and giving them directions. It’s also likely that we will soon see exhibitors integrate voice devices into the exhibition stand experience.
Is this the future of review sites?
In a drive that could be used to further monetise its platform, while adding value to its customer-base, TripAdvisor is opening its platform to include recommendations from brands. The site has unveiled social-assisted travel, which will enable members to get recommendations and inspiration by following friends and travel experts as well as brands, publishers, and social media influencers, such as well-known restaurateurs and travel bloggers.
The travel review pioneer’s new beta site has more than 500 launch partners, including National Geographic, Condé Nast Traveler, Travel Channel and Business Insider. Members will also be able to follow leading social-media influencers.
VP of community products and growth, National Geographic, said in a statement: “We’re excited to be among the first publishers to join the new TripAdvisor, further expanding our travel footprint. As a global media company, we’re always seeking new opportunities to share our awe-inspiring articles, photos and video content, and a partnership with TripAdvisor allows us to do just that.”
Many event venues, along with hotels, restaurants and attractions are already reviewed by users on TripAdvisor, they now have the opportunity to be recommended by famous personalities and leading brands and this could have a profound effect on their ability to attract new business. For example, if National Geographic, Coca-Cola or Ford Motor Cars use your venue and post on TripAdvisor about their experience, it could hold a lot of sway with future prospects.
77,651 business opportunities in 3 days
The 31st installment of IBTM World took place this week, which once again saw the global meetings and events industry come together for 3 days of meetings, networking, and inspiration.
This year was a particularly busy year with a record number of pre-arranged meetings – a total of 77,651… and those don’t even include the ones that are arranged during the event!
Commenting on the news, David Thompson, Exhibition Director, said: “We’re absolutely thrilled to announce such strong results for our customers. Not only does it point to this year’s event being another highly successful opportunity for exhibitors in terms of the volume of quality opportunities to do business with completely new contacts, but it’s also a real boost for our team who continue to work incredibly hard as we enter the final stages of preparation for next week’s event.”
Though fantastic news for the event, this is not just an achievement for IBTM World – it is also a reflection of the state of the industry, and should prove that face-to-face is still thriving.
You can find the full story here: https://www.ibtmworld.com/en/media/Press-Releases/ibtm-world-breaks-record/