A lot of changes and new trends are on their way for the events industry in 2020. Meetings will evolve and change with new methods being used to determine the ideal formula. There are no constants in the events industry of the future. Success will be based on flexibility, dynamics and the desires of the attendees. Looking at future trends is the best way to offer exceptional event management.
Event Industry Trends
1. The Importance of Data
Data is at the heart of event planning for 2020. Data is important for personalising the experiences of the guests. Larger events are overwhelming due to the networking events, hundreds of required sessions and keynotes. One solution is using event apps to offer suggestions based on data. This includes using the networks and profiles of the attendees through the use of algorithms.
The event app can be used to make suggestions directly pertaining to the specific event. This is beneficial for planners and guests. The planners will know the event will be engaging. Guests will be delighted because they will believe the event was catered specifically for their needs.
2. The Decrease in Face-To-Face Time
Events will become a marketing channel in 2020. A recent survey showed 52 percent of all participants believed business is driven more by event marketing than any other source. This is due to the extended periods spent in front of a screen. As people spend more time looking at a screen, the time spent face-to-face will decrease. This makes this time incredibly valuable for 2020.
3. Focusing on Sustainability
Sustainability is an important part of the future. This involves a lot more than reducing the use of plastics. Attendees are interested in events using energy efficiently, LEED certifications and local food initiatives. Only innovative solutions will be able to minimise the carbon footprint of the events industry.
4. Increased Event Security
Unfortunately, one of the most prominent trends is the need to increase security at events. This is a serious issue for the event industry. There have been new reasons for additional security every year. Security concerns are also on the rise. There are not always solutions to ensure safety and security. More than half of all event planners do not have emergency security plans. The focus of 2020 is finding solutions for numerous issues.
This includes onsite security improvements, cybersecurity and crisis communication. Every event planner is responsible for ensuring the attendees remain safe. Crisis communication is believed to be the most important aspect according to 47 percent of the planners. This will be one of the biggest trends for 2020. There is always a possibility a crisis will occur before, after or during an event. Communication with the stakeholders and attendees at these times is crucial.
If a crisis is handled incorrectly, the event planner may not be able to secure another job in the future. This can effectively end their careers. Proper crisis communication needs to include everyone at the event. Each individual should have their own role. A good plan for crisis communication must be prepared and created to ensure everyone knows what to do in the event of a crisis.
5. Event Cybersecurity
Of all the event planners surveyed, only 5.26 percent believed one of the main priorities for events should be cybersecurity. This is a critical misconception. Hackers will go after the information found in management software and registration platforms. The professionals planning events are responsible for the protection of the personal data of the attendees. Event planners take responsibility for a staggering amount of information.
This includes the names of executives, email addresses, cell phone numbers, titles, office and home phone numbers, hotel reservations and travel itineraries. This information represents a pot of gold for hackers because all they require are one or two pieces of valid information. If the event security lapses, a little bit of phishing will provide hackers with all of the information they need to successfully hack all of the event attendees.
Cybersecurity is finally beginning to receive the notice necessary to protect attendees. Companies and governments across the globe have started implementing specific measures to ensure protecting data is a priority. This is incredibly important for the entertainment sector. Several bills have already been passed in Europe and the United States to ensure tech companies follow minimum standards for cybersecurity and privacy.
Tech companies breaching these standards will receive a fine. The expectations for 2020 are when a senior executive decides to lie about privacy standards, it will be considered a crime. Regulations could then be enforced by the state through the use of attorney services. In addition to the role of the government, the event industry must take the measures necessary for preventing cybersecurity attacks with disastrous results.
Event planners need to make certain all of the data for the event is encrypted, logins require a 2-factor authentication and a password manager is in use. The passwords for event registration must be kept safe to prevent them from falling into the wrong hands.
6. Improvements for Onsite Security
The top priority for every event planner should be doing everything possible to ensure the safety of the attendees at the event. Conversations regarding security should include the staff and everyone present at the venue. This includes providing the details for crisis and emergency plans and proper crowd control for large events. One of the most powerful tools for onsite security is technology.
The trend is using apps so attendees can report any suspicious activity or possible threats to security quickly and efficiently. Maps should be distributed with information regarding where attendees should go if an evacuation is necessary with all fire exits clearly marked.
7. Innovative Seating
Event planners are now considering the experience of the attendees prior to deciding on the meeting environment. This trend will result in exciting and new concepts for meeting layouts. The tone and mood of every event are impacted by the arrangement of the attendees and the type of seating. These factors must be considered by professional event planners when planning for brainstorming, teamwork, layouts, networking and creativity.
8. The Artistic Factor
One of the latest social media trends is visual platforms. This has led to partnerships between artistic venues and professionals to ensure excellent backdrops for social media. Creativity has become an important trend for everything from event venues to empty warehouses. Creativity is expected to be at the forefront of 2020.
9. Unique Venues
Of all event planners surveyed, 53 percent believe the biggest location trend for 2020 will be leaving hotel venues in the past and embracing more unique possibilities. Too many of the old venues have become boring for the attendees. Unique venues enable event planners to use their talents and creativity. This can provide attendees with a unique and scintillating experience. Event planners can access entirely new options by using unique venues such as museums, industrial lofts, farms and studios.
The location needs to match the overall mood of the event, the goals and the brand. The event planner will be facing new challenges due to this trend. They may need to arrange for power supplies, supply Wi-Fi or have staging built. This can customise the design of the event. This will require additional work for the event planner.
10. The Beauty of a Virtual World
Modern technology enables the event planner to collaborate with their staff much easier. Vendor and staff meetings can be held and daily communications handled through the use of technological tools. This means the event planner can share documents to remain current for everything pertaining to the event.
11. Visits to the Site
Pre-planning can be accomplished simply by visiting the venue sites. The majority of venues offer video, floorplans and basic details including catering options and the venue capacity directly from the site. Due to modern technology, the event planner can now go virtual. New technology such as virtual reality venue tours and video meetings enable the event planner to plan the entire event without the need to actually visit the site. This will save the event planner a lot of valuable time in addition to the added sustainability.
12. Optimising Gamification
Incorporating game elements into the venue has become one of the latest trends for 2020. Event planners can use this trend for the application of networking, learning and competition. This makes the venue feel like a community event while offering new and exciting elements. Gaming accents of the future will include personal touches for the engagement of the attendees. The attendees can win points, badges and prizes. Modern technology will allow attendees to keep track of where they stand on the leader board.
Attendees will enjoy personal gaming while interacting with the other attendees. Virtual reality (VR) was not possible for event budgets in the past. The accessibility of VR technology in current times has made VR more standard for the future. This offers more engagement for attendees during live events. The VR experience has become an important part of the future of event planning. Event planning professionals adore VR because it makes it possible to transform events into anything they desire.
VR is about fully interactive attendee surveys, enhanced gamification and offering an intriguing experience by engaging all of the senses of the attendees.
13. Providing Enhanced Engagement through Customised Learning
The expectations of the attendees for personalised experiences has become an important concept for 2020. Technical tools are being used by event planners to provide unique opportunities for learning to every attendee. The needs of every attendee can be analysed through technology. Attendees will be guided to the best educational material and information to make certain they remain engaged throughout the event.
14. Personalised Messages and Schedules
Data will be used by event planners for the identification of the career responsibilities, deficits in knowledge and interests of the attendees. This will enable the creation of an experience customised for the needs of professionals. A unique experience will be ensured through special meeting agendas, push notifications and targeted ads. The interaction between the event technology and attendees will ensure all of the information is engaging and relevant.
Event apps will show ads targeted for the speakers the attendee is interested in viewing. The creation of a meeting agenda will keep the needs of the attendees in mind. Advanced algorithms will target attendees requiring special training to offer all available options. Push notifications will be sent according to the location of the event to provide attendees with interests and experiences nearby. Educational opportunities will no longer be missed by attendees.
15. Inclusion and Diversity
Event planning in 2020 will focus on inclusion and diversity. This surpasses both ethnicity and race. Diversity is about age, physical ability, language, gender, religion and so much more. This trend is about the celebration of inclusion and diversity. This includes food options, the language used for signage, codes of conduct and better panel representation. All of this has become important for event planners. Future events will make a creator effort to include everyone.
16. Wi-Fi for Events
Nothing damages an event quite like poor Wi-Fi. There are numerous event planners with no idea how to fix this problem. Necessary improvements need to be made concerning the cost of WI-Fi. Speed and connectivity issues at events need to be fixed. According to 64 percent of event planners, the cost of Wi-Fi is higher than it should be. Numerous event planners have settled for poor hotel Wi-Fi. This is no longer necessary due to the other options available.
The secret to decreasing costs and improving Wi-Fi is understanding every event is different. There is no particular Wi-Fi available ideal for every event. This is due to all of the variables. The first step for event planners of 2020 is learning everything there is to know about event Wi-Fi. The event planner needs to have a basic understanding of the terminology currently being used. Research needs to be conducted to determine the bandwidth needs for the event. This will enable the event planner to procure the best and most effective Wi-Fi available.