Embracing the Edge: Looking to the Future of the Events Industry


Posted on July 5, 2023



Event Management

As we head into the new financial year, we find ourselves at the forefront of another transformative year, driven by evolving customer expectations and rapid technological advancement. The reality is that AI has rapidly gone from being a "one-day" tool over the past six months to reshaping every industry, including events. Similarly, virtual reality and similar platforms are no longer the realm of science fiction films. Let's look at some of the ways emerging technologies are transforming how we conceive, plan, and execute events.

1. Hyper-personalisation is driving deeper connections

A one size fits all approach no longer works – if it ever has. We now live in an age of personalised experiences, meaning event organisers need to understand attendees on a deeper level to create more relevant and immersive experiences. A recent survey of Meeting Planners and Venues by The International Association of Conference Centres (IACC) emphasises the importance of personalised experiences and interactions. Using technology and AI algorithms in every interaction, from registration to post-event follow-up, can help provide a deeper understanding of attendees' individual interests and preferences. This means event organisers can adapt event planning, from speaker selection to catering options, to better ensure a lasting impact.

2. Tech-enabled intelligent venues to enhance the event environment

Imagine a venue that anticipates and adapts to the needs of each event seamlessly. Lighting, temperature, and audio-visual setups can dynamically adjust based on preferences while reducing environmental impact by managing electricity usage. For example, programming lighting to adapt to the time of day and the available natural light. There is also growing demand for events and venues that meet ESG requirements and offer post-event ESG reporting. AI-powered tools can both monitor real-time usage and streamline reporting requirements.

3. Using AI as an assistant to streamline planning and execution

Planning and executing events require meticulous coordination and attention to detail, which can translate to large teams of event co-coordinators and escalating costs in a price-sensitive, time-poor market. AI-powered tools can simplify and streamline many tasks, for example, chat bots to answer routine enquiries, writing and grammar tools for drafting or editing communications, and scheduling and resource allocation tools. When everyone is increasingly being asked to do more with less, AI can help save time and your sanity. You’ve probably already used Siri or Alexa, now is the time to experiment with new platforms like intelligent scheduling assistants, Chat GPT and Dalle. Even something as simple as when you are stumped on how to write that Excel formula or where to find instructions to set up your new wifi network, AI can help. Using AI for these micro-tasks can free up your team's time to focus on the creative and strategic aspects that will elevate your event to higher levels.

4. Immersive technologies are creating new event possibilities

Virtual reality (VR) and augmented reality (AR) increasingly allow event organisers to imagine and create new experiences for attendees, like lifelike 3D visualisations, interactive product demonstrations, and walk through immersive interactive environments. As well as facilitating new possibilities on-site at your event, there's a rapidly growing capacity for virtual conferences, exhibition halls and networking spaces that transcend geographical limitations.

5. AI-assisted networking

Networking has long been the cornerstone of a successful event, and AI is revolutionising how we connect. AI-driven matchmaking algorithms can analyse attendee profiles and then provide attendees with suggested people they should connect with, and location-enabled devices can also help to facilitate connections based on proximity. As well as introducing yourself to someone at the coffee cart (still a winning strategy), attendees can now use event platforms to chat and schedule system suggested meetings in advance before deepening that connection on the day of the event. Maybe by arranging to meet in person at the coffee cart… This pace of change will only continue to accelerate. Embracing the future and using AI as a practical tool to 'get stuff done' will continue to create opportunities for the events industry. So, stay inspired and curious, experiment today and explore how these tools can help you be creative and strategic and make real human connections.

About Cliftons
Event Solutions

If you’re ready to start bringing your event plans to life, talk to our
team to discuss your goals.

Start with a no-obligation chat about what you want to achieve, and our team can guide you through the services we offer.