For many years, event management technology was about doing it all – starting with online registration and branching out to accommodation, travel, speakers, exhibitors, reporting and more.
That was the only option and the choice was finding a platform with the right combination of functionality and performance to take care of our increasingly complex event and meeting requirements.
Then, with the advent of the iPhone and the revolution of the app store, things changed, quite rapidly in fact.
The rise of the cloud, apps and newer technology ushered in the specific use app.
Mobile attendee apps were the start. That opened the floodgate of new innovation and technology for the meetings industry, including new tools and solutions for social networking, exhibitor services and much more.
It’s a social world for meeting planners, that’s for sure!
More and more meetings are deploying attendee apps to encourage social interaction on many levels. It’s a great way to engage attendees and encourage interaction throughout your event.
We’ve also seen how meeting organizers utilize Twitter, Facebook and other platforms to encourage additional interaction for attendees and to share the excitement and buzz of an event with an outside audience.
It’s great to share your event hashtag and encourage attendees to post comments and images from your event.
But, it’s not always suitable or appropriate, especially for events with privacy and security considerations. Also, some attendees may not feel comfortable sharing their presence and comments to the outside world.
What’s your solution?
Event Management is a lot of work. No big surprise there.
Getting your entire team on the same page can be a challenge and depending on your technology, it can be a really big headache.
Fortunately, there are many ways to have your team connect with each other and keep everyone on task and coordinated.
The term for this, of course is collaboration.
Whether you want to track status and deliverables, or simply want to share documents and spreadsheets with multiple members of your team, there are many fantastic solutions out there. Many are free, which is a nice bonus!
However, experienced meeting planners know there are several crucial aspects to team collaboration:
- Document Sharing
- Task Management and Scheduling
Each of these items is crucial on its own, but combined, can cause you a lot of stress if you don’t have a structured approach to each element. For the technically minded event manager, much of this can be done for virtually no cost at all, if you are willing to put in some work to keep everything organized and on track.
From the very beginning, Event Management software was an all-in-one solution. Meeting managers faced dozens, if not hundreds of tasks, so event management technology focused on the big picture, not just one part of it.
Registration, name badges, itineraries, housing, functions, email communications, and later online registration forms were all integrated in one complete solution.
And with that comprehensive approach came a high cost of acquisition.
Even today, many event management solutions are based on this old model of comprehensive solutions that come at a high price, typically driven by the model of per-person registration fees.
For example, if you were a professional conference organizer managing a dozen meetings a year with an estimated registration count of 10,000 registrations, it is not uncommon to see yearly technology fees in the $40,000 to $60,000 range.
However, with the advent of mobile apps, the event management software industry has experienced a major paradigm shift in how technology is deployed and priced.
Almost overnight, the comprehensive meetings platform because old news and dozens of new solutions entered the marketplace as stand-alone apps.
Centium Software today announced that EventsAIR® was recognized by the Australian Information Industry Association (AIIA) by winning the Queensland 2017 iAward for Business Services Markets. EventsAIR was also recognized as a Merit Recipient for Queensland Infrastructure & Platforms Innovations of the Year.
The Australian Information Industry Association (AIIA) is Australia’s peak representative body and advocacy group for those in the digital ecosystem. Since 1978 AIIA has pursued activities to stimulate and grow the digital ecosystem, to create a favorable business environment for members and to contribute to Australia’s economic prosperity.
In receiving the award, Centium CEO Trevor Gardiner acknowledged the significant and positive contribution by the entire Centium team.
“From the very beginning, we knew we wanted to make EventsAIR the most powerful solution for the meetings industry,” Mr. Gardiner said. “Our team has focused on providing extraordinary value to our clients and to include collection of apps and services that redefine what a meeting management platform is all about. I am very proud of what our team has created.”
“Everyone here at Centium Software thanks the AIIA for this prestigious award,” Mr. Gardiner continued. “We are honored to receive the AIIA Queensland iAward for Business Services Markets for EventsAIR, and are thrilled to be recognized as a Merit Recipient for Queensland Innovation of the Year as well.”
Event planners already know that in general, they are overworked and have a stressful career. Countless studies and articles written in the past few years talk about this as if it is something new, something we have not already learned.
Every month there are articles detailing how meeting planners need to be more organized, learn how to multi-task (or learn how to avoid multi-tasking), to create efficient routines, to get enough sleep and exercise as well as how to effectively delegate and much more.
Much of what you read is common sense. Multi-tasking, handled poorly, will make you less efficient and create more work. Poor delegation of tasks will just make more work for yourself. Not getting enough sleep, not getting enough exercise…well you know where we are going with that.
But, what if your event technology is getting in the way?
What if your technology is making more work for you?
Many platforms in use today rely on technology dating back to 2005 or earlier. We all know about technology that makes you open up one attendee record at a time, close one event before you can open another, and if you are running a couple of reports, well, you might as well go out for a cup of coffee.
If that describes your work day, then it’s no wonder you are just a little bit stressed out!
The challenge of getting attendees to sign up for your events has always been a part of the meetings business. Nothing new there.
It used to be fine to send out postcards. But then, the Internet happened.
Then, it became standard to send out email invitations and build an event website.
But then, Social Media happened.
Today, meeting planners are faced with either jumping into the world of social media or risk getting left behind.
Today’s meeting and event attendees are more and more inclined to be connected on many different social media platforms. Even attendees who didn’t grow up in the social media revolution have adapted.
According to Facebook, out of its 1,590 million users (as of April 2016), more than 60% of adults ages 50-64 use Facebook on a regular basis.
Younger generations? Usage approaches up to 85%.
So, let’s burst that myth that only Millennials and Gen Xers use Facebook, Twitter and all those other social media platforms.
That’s really good news for today’s meeting planners.