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Technology can bring 'wow' but content is king, panel says


Technology may bring ‘wow factor’ to your event – but should add to the experience rather than purely ‘showing off’, according to the ‘Learning Lounge’ panel at Summer Eventia.

The session gave attendees a taste of the new technology available – plus the potential issues in their deployment. XL Events’ David Mulcahy showed examples of the high-tech capability of 3D mapping via a Toyota Prius campaign, plus gesture control and augmented reality.

However, he warned it was best to get tech teams involved earlier in the process as clients were often unaware of the complexity of the production and time involved to train presenters on how to showcase the technology. “We are usually involved a lot later in the process but it helps to be involved in the pitch stage or creative stage so later on we’re all singing from the same hymn sheet. The one thing that does tend to be forgotten is that content is still king. Is it actually adding anything or is it just showing off?”

Peter Donnelly of Active Network agreed that in the case of mobile apps for events “don’t build it just because you believe you need to have one,” adding that 25 per cent of all apps were deleted immediately after download for not being easy to use, engaging or meeting the user’s needs. It was important to have a strategy for the app, awareness of the platforms it would be used on, the connectivity of the venue and the audience demographic in its creation. 

“The first question to ask your client is what is your objective for this event, this activity? Then we can understand what technology will help deliver that.”

Laura Moody of Blondfish outlined the capabilities of RFID (radio frequency identification), outlining how a Smirnoff party reached an additional two million people on Facebook through party-goers using the technology to upload photos or pick their preferred Smirnoff cocktails.

“Used well, these technologies help with interactivity and also measurement. They can help shape the future of your event,” she added.

Pictured: 3D mapping brings a Toyota Prius to life

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