The Top 5 Audience Engagement Technologies For 2014
In order to attract attendees to your upcoming corporate event and keep them enthralled while they’re there, you must incorporate the right technologies. Engagement tools and practices have evolved substantially over the years. In order to remain a strong presence in today’s marketplace, it’s important to create connected digital experiences from start to finish. Social networking, event app analytics, Smartphones, Gamification, and video opportunities can add the pizzazz that gets the party started and keeps it going throughout the event. By implementing 2014’s five top audience engagement technologies, conference hosts and hostesses can get the word out about their event ahead of time. Once the conference is in full swing, these technologies can help to keep tabs on participants’ moods, and then keep the buzz going long after attendees have gone home.
If you want to really get your audience members to buy in, use social media before, during, and after your meeting. This technological tool is perfect for connecting your participants and allowing them to form tight bonds for future networking. You can use blogs, Facebook, Twitter, or Linked In.
- Before: Once you’ve sent out the invitations to the people who you want to attend your event, connect them with social media. This can allow them to communicate with each other upfront, make connections with others they already know, and share the information with potential guests. You can also put out online polls to learn about their needs and expectations, in order to hone your presentations to meet the desires of the group.
- During: After the attendees have arrived, whether to the main event or to one of the workshop presentations, they can still connect with each other via the site. That’s a perfect way for them to share ideas, meet up for coffee and conversation, and reflect on what they’re learning. Also, contests can be held for “Most Tweets” or to vote on trending topics.
- After: When the last attendee has flown back to his or her hometown, having the social media connection with your event gives each person a way to stay in touch with the others. Having a link to each other post-convention can allow the connections to continue.
Event App Analytics
Another way to use technology to engage your audience is with event apps. These analytics tools are mobile and can give you insight into how your get-together is being received by your participants in real-time. By having this valuable look at the impressions your event is having on attendees, you can alter and adjust when necessary to have the most powerful outcome possible.
- Learning is easier when apps are incorporated. Let’s face it; a top reason attendees go to events is to come away with new knowledge, and apps help them do that. Plus, it cuts down on printing costs and saves the lives of a few trees, to boot.
- Conversations can be started with less awkwardness, because event apps allow attendees to message each other. They can say a quick hi, get acquainted, and plan to meet in person when the time is right.
- The mobile apps give those attending the workshop the ability to keep track of their schedules, save documents, and download their favorite talks and sessions.
Everyone has a Smartphone, right? Well, why not harness the power of the electronic gadget in every attendee’s pocket by utilizing interactive technologies? You can have them play games to reinforce what they’re learning in their seminars, such as races, polls, tug-a-wars, and Q & A sessions. If you want participants to become engaged, and to remember what they heard during the meetings, let them have some hands-on participation. Participating kinesthetically is a way attendees absorb information and remember it long after the session has ended.
If you want your audience to truly be engaged in the content of your workshop, inject some fun and games into the mix. Gamification involves applying basic principles for playing games into activities not typically associated with merrymaking. Turning problem-solving into cooperative or competitive play can definitely impact knowledge retention, not to mention lengthening attention spans. What do you think you would be more engaging and memorable, learning by playing a rousing game with teammates or watching a power point on a screen? Fun trumps tedium every time. Gamification can allow participants to generate camaraderie as they work together in teams on certain games. It can also reward those who like to compete and excel, plus give feedback to those interested in how they’re doing when stacked up against the others.
Don’t overlook the power of video in engaging your audience. You can incorporate a variety of film clips in your conference to entertain and educate your viewers. With the clips, you can build up excitement before everyone gathers by posting them on your social network, and then keep it going throughout the event. Videoing options are plentiful and affordable.
- Live-Streaming: By live-streaming your event, you can bring viewers from around the world into your convention.
- YouTube: You can make film clips during your event, and then post them on You Tube. Little videos are great vehicles for enhancing the impression you’ve made.
- Video Presentations: You can also film engaging presentations in ways that will entertain and titillate your audience. Using humor, music, and eye-catching imagery will allow your attend to remember the videos long after they go home.
Along with using all the modern techno devices and tools that are available in 2014 to engage audiences, planners can also include some age-old tricks. For example, hosts and hostesses should pay attention to making sure everyone is comfortable, well fed, and enjoying themselves. Participants can be encouraged to share personal stories about where they’re from, photos, and goals in attending the workshop. It’s important to make sure everyone has adequate lodging, knows what the city has to offer in terms of regional flavor, and how to get around town via rental cars and/or public transportation. By paying attention to these details, as well as engaging the audience via technological tools, a memorable time can be held by all.