App-ropriate technology Expert OpinionFeatures

Choosing technologies for your exhibitions is not easy, with organisers unsure what’s been tried and tested. Event Tech Lab’s James Morgan gives his app tips

What is Event Tech Lab?

Event Tech Lab is a partnership community of event tech start-ups from around the world. The lab helps new technology providers get noticed and used by exhibition organisers and other event professionals. Some of the technologies are suited to consumer exhibitions and trade shows. The lab has had these applications tested for reliability. This round-up of newer technologies is looked at through three different perspectives – the organiser, the exhibitor and the attendee.

Organiser Apps

Exhibition organisers will be using a variety of technologies to manage production and logistics, marketing and management of an exhibition. Often these technologies are never seen front of house. However, in some instances certain technologies can enhance an exhibition experience as well as provide an extra revenue stream for organisers.

Boomset event entry platform is used to manage a high volume of attendees at exhibitions or large events. Check in people on a guest list with a smile and personal touch or exhibition organisers can take advantage of the high volume, efficient check in system that uses bar code readers linked to badge printers.

Giant iTab can be used to provide an interactive display of information e.g. the event app, floor plans/maps or even allow photos to be taken and uploaded to social media. The giant interactive screens can also be rented to exhibitors to increase the interactivity and ‘stickiness’ of their exhibition booths. They can use the photo function on the interactive screens to post attendee pics to social media sights. For the organiser a new revenue stream is possible.

SharedXP allows organisers to engage with attendee’s pre-event – before the marketing of the programme takes place – to crowd source get on all types of content wanted by potential and returning attendees. Organisers can use the platform to source ideas for keynotes, panels, all sorts of topic, demonstrations and more including social events and entertainment. Organiser networks are invited to suggest ideas which can be shared and voted on by other invitees.

Symposia allows exhibition and trade show micro sites to be easily built. As you build the microsite, the app automatically builds an event app. If you change something in the microsite the app is automatically updated. Exhibition organisers creating multiple events can use the dashboard to control their multi-event.

Zenus is a facial recognition software that is used to create seamless check in whilst providing secure entry to exhibitions and trade shows. The technology in its infancy, is one of the most exciting developments in the event technology space today. The Zenus API seamlessly integrates into ticketing platforms. Attendees add their image on registration. The recognition software works on tablets and smart phones at the entry point to an event.

Exhibitor Apps

Enhancing your exhibitors experience by proving technology that allows more efficient use of their time and value for money is paramount. Exhibitors want good leads as well as imaginative ways to deliver content to attendees. These apps can help them do that, as well as provide organisers with new revenue streams.

Akkroo can be sold by the organisers to exhibitors as a lead retrieval system, that seamless adds the data to an exhibitors CRM systems – such as Hub Spot, Marketo and Salesforce – in real time. Exhibitors can manage multiple events on a cloud based dashboard and collect data via forms, badge scans or business card scans from tablets or smart phones.  The days of exhibition organisers having to provide scanning devices is over.

Wi-5 can be sold by organisers to exhibitors to deliver content at exhibition stands to the attendees. A small Wi-5 box allows exhibitors to add content on to the hard drive which its on an exhibition booth. As attendees walk by and look at their Wi-Fi settings the name of the exhibitor will pop up. Attendees simply pick that exhibitors network and then access all sorts of content – apps, PDF’s, video and more – or else respond to surveys or fill out forms. The platform all provides data analytics on what content pieces were accessed by visitors to the booth.

Attendee Apps

Providing a great experience for attendees is what gives a show it’s positive reputation. Whether organisers are wanting to provide great networking opportunities or enhance learning outcomes in content theatres, attendees can use these technologies to enhance their experience.

Evotion is a robotics rental company. They provide novel ways for attendees to engage with content and entertainment on the show floor. The company can write all sorts of code to get the autonomous robots to function in specific ways.

Glisser is a PowerPoint slide sharing technology that is used in keynote and education sessions at exhibitions. Imagine if a presenter can load up their slides to an app that then generates a unique weblink for that presentation. Attendees simply go to the unique link and can view the presenter’s slides. They can make notes on the slides and even send questions to the presenter. The presenter can also create polls and quizzes for the attendees to interact with. The organiser will enhance the depth of knowledge and interactivity that attendees can achieve at the content sessions provided.

Grip can be used as an attendee application to meet the right people. It can be embedded into an organisers event app (API) or used via native app. The industry first that makes use of AI (artificial intelligence) relies on an algorithm that is able to provide the best matches of people based on LinkedIn profiles. The app gives a percentage rating to people signed up on the system and makes sure that the right people meet. This process takes seconds. Organisers will benefit from making sure that they add value to the attendee experience through efficient and valuable networking.

Tap To Speak is a tool that is used at conference or in education sessions at exhibitions. The app allows peoples’ mobiles to become microphones. Shy people who have questions are now empowered. The application also allows polls and quizzes through web-based mobile interface. Organisers using this tool will see the returns in the amount of interaction that takes place during their education content sessions.

Tom Hall

Tom Hall

Editor, Exhibition World

Tom Hall

Editor, Exhibition World