Last week, I spoke at an ISES Calgary chapter event about Social Media. One of the comments that an audience member made on why he was wary about using this media for his business was, “The moment I post something on my blog or Facebook page, my idea will be copied by my competitors.”
There’s no doubt that ideas are spread and adopted at record speeds. One only needs to look at the popularity of moustaches on a stick (an über popular trend for weddings I simply can’t wrap my mind around) to see this phenomenon in action. It takes but one person to plant an idea and only a few more to share it and ignite a trend that influences thousands.
Rather than see this as a negative, I hope to convince you that this is, in fact, a positive:
So, what do you think? Should ideas be shared? Should they be held back?
In case you missed the free Event Marketing 2.0 webinar last week, MeetingsNet has posted the archive here. (Please note that if you were not previously registered, you will need to register before you can launch the webinar.) I encourage anyone interested in using social media for your event marketing to listen.
It was truly a fantastic session. Lots of great questions and my co-presenters: Kate Slonaker of Cvent and Julius Solaris of The Event Manager Blog were fab to work with. You can also view the conversation around the webinar or by track it yourself using the #event2pt0 hashtag.
Enjoy! And, if you have any questions, I welcome you to email me.
PS – For further reading, check out Meetings Blog‘s recap of the webinar.
Are you one of the many event planners who wonders what life was like before you iPad? I can’t tell you how many event planning conferences I go to and observe planners clutching their ipads as they hustle from session to session or use it to voraciously type their notes or communicate with their online friends. I am one of you.
The Event Planning Tools Megalist I posted last month was a big hit. So, I thought I’d share a handful of iPad apps that no event planner should live without. Here goes:
CUSTOMER SERVICE & ENGAGEMENT
READING / WATCHING
What tools can’t you live without?
Thank you to Carolyn Ray for inspiring this post.
I speak all of the time about the importance of telling stories in business and in events. Stories help to create intangible value, they break down complex ideas and most of what we store in our brains are attached to a story. We’re hardwired to not only tell stories, but to learn from them and retain them.
Event Planners are fantastic at creating a story at the live event…providing experiences that create lasting memories. But the story shouldn’t begin and end face to face.
Storify is a tool that lets event organizers collect tweets, Facebook updates, Flickr photos, Youtube videos, RSS feeds pre- during and post-event to build a lasting narrative around an event. Just take a look at this Storify page for HIMSS (Healthcare Information & Management Systems Society). In one story they included speaker presentations, event photos, attendee comments, behind the scenes videos, etc.
Take a look at this mini-story I pulled together from Event Solutions Idea Factory tweets and video:
For more information, read Storify’s How to get the most out of your story.
How might you use Storify for your business / events?
For the past few years, Augmented Reality has been gaining a lot of buzz…and for good reason. According to Wikipedia:
Augmented reality (also referred to as AR) is a term for a live direct or indirect view of a physical, real-world environment whose elements are augmented by computer-generated sensory input, such as sound or graphics.
The idea of holding up your smart phone to something you see and your phone providing a rich source of information about the subject seems like something worthy of a sci-fi plot. But we’re seeing great apps doing this right now…and if you use your imagination, the possibilities for Event Planners are seemingly endless.
Take TAT for example. Simply hold up your smart phone to someone and the face-recognition software will provide you with icons linking you to the individual’s social profiles.
Or, there’s Word Lens, an app that will let you hold up your phone to a sign and translate the sign from English to Spanish or vice versa.
Check out Yelp’s lesser known augmented reality function:
We are in the very early days of Augmented Reality. In fact, most apps have yet to work out all of the kinks. But it’s not hard to imagine a day very soon when you can hold up your phone in front of a city street and be told about events and friends nearby. Or use your phone at a conference to scan other attendees, share notes, send information or access contact information. Or attend a trade show and hold up your phone to find the booths you want to see on the floor. And once you find a booth, hold you phone over an item to access purchase details like price, availability, matching items, etc. Sounds exciting, right?
I do believe we’re going to be hearing a lot about Augmented Reality in the coming year.
So, if you could create an AR app, what would it do?
Last year’s What’s Next In Events eBook was focused on how Social Media would impact the Events Industry. And did it ever! There’s no doubt that social media provided organizers with new ways to connect with and engage attendees, created new revenue streams and at the same time put strains on already tapped-out budgets and resources, spawned new formats of meetings, conferences and education, and enabled planners to hear what people really thought about their events.
As planners become more entrenched in the tools and the strategies behind using them, many are recognizing a need to take an inward look at their organizations and events to deliver extraordinary experiences.
This year we have organized an incredible panel of 9 experts in their respective fields:
Since you were a child, you’ve been playing games. From cops and robbers to snakes and ladders…games are entrenched in our growth and our culture. Ever ask yourself how people can spend hours and hours in front of their television lost in a video game? Developers have learned that the key to a successful game is the ability to have fun coupled with a system for incentives or rewards.
Gamification is defined as “the use of game play mechanics for non-game consumer technology applications, particularly consumer-oriented web and mobile sites, in order to encourage people to adopt the applications”. According to Bunchball, “People have fundamental needs and desires – for reward, status, achievement, self-expression, competition, and altruism among others. These needs are universal, and cross generations, demographics, cultures and genders.”. Educators have long since recognized the power of games in helping us learn and marketers are rapidly understanding the power of games in capturing consumer attention and interest. Here are just a few examples…
Nike held an event called Grid in London on October 22, 2010. Participants were invited to run (not walk or take public transit) across London, find the Grid phone boxes, punch in their unique game code. The more running they did, the more points and badges they earned. The person with the most points in each area claimed the crown of that postcode. Badges were also awarded for speed, stamina and insider knowledge of the streets.
Gamify.com is a business focused on bringing gamification and engagement to web clients. Their site is under construction. Now, instead of simply having an Under Construction site, they created a game – try it yourself. I was compelled to engage with their website simply because there was a game.
In 2007, Mint.com took a revolutionary approach to personal finance. They turned it into a game by making managing your money fun. Say, for example, you were saving up for a trip to Hawaii. You could choose this option from a menu, and as you save more funds towards towards your goal, your gauge fills up. You also get a financial score that encourages responsible actions (like avoiding high banking fees, etc). To date, the site claims to have more than 1.5 million active users.
As with any other externally-driven initiative your business takes the key is to determine if it will add value to your customers and whether its benefits aligned with your goals. If so, build gamification around your priorities – do you want consumers to remember you, tell a friend, engage with your product? Build incentives that will promote your priorities.