First up were Katie & Leonor. They showed how you can build conversation into your content, giving people stimulus to connect around. The added benefit of this approach being that we all retain more information when we’re actively involved rather than just passively listening.
Scavenger Hunts – Audiences work together to uncover content and make connections
Lego Challenge – Get people collaborating around a behavioural change exercise
Paired Discussion – Break up presented content with periods of chat
Wonder Walks – Pair people up, give them a topic and send them off on a walk and talk
Solution Room – Small groups discuss people’s challenges using the wisdom of the crowd to generate new ideas
Human Spectrogram – Voting with your feet. People move to different parts of a room to indicate their opinions
Reverse Q&A – Put audience questions back to the audience. Bounce the topic around before going to your on-stage experts.
Paul & Kat shared some tips for designing spaces that put people at ease and naturally help them network. These included:
Venues – be prepared to sacrifice practicality in order to have a space that sparks wonder and discussion
Bums on seats – think outside the box – stimulating, surprising and unconventional ways to seat your audience
Little things – sometimes it’s the tiny, quirky, left-field things that spark conversation
Big things – be bold, one big design statement is far more powerful than diluting ideas across many areas
Make it fun – the Sketch toilets are all we need to say on this point
Conor & Emily reminded us how far what used to ambitiously be called ‘networking areas’ have come. Conor started with four activations, sure to spark conversation:
Thought Bubbles – these floating orbs are not only great for branding, by asking people to write their own content onto them they become a fun way to share content
Stitch School – embroidery is back! Customised printed looms are a visually stimulating way to get people chatting around a brand message
Scratch Walls – a great conversation building idea, courtesy of Marriott
Luster – crowd sourced mosaic art piece, which sees delegates printing insta pictures using the event hashtag to add them to a giant mosaic board to reveal brand messaging
Emily reminded us that whilst all the above is great fun, what people really want is food! And, she showed that F&B can also be a spectacle that gets people talking.
Lick me I’m Delicious – these guys provide experiential food installations such as nitrogen ice cream, tipsy fountains and their wonderful new invention edible balloons. Their contraptions are visually striking and create natural conversation points
Thirsty Thoughts– have designed a robot that allows people to pour a pint of beer or even a mocktail, through mind control
Ooho – are a driving force of sustainability. Their sustainably packaged liquid shots let people hydrate without using plastic and are sure to spark conversation
Robot barman – people can digitally order a cocktail and watch robots make them right before their eyes. Again, a fantastic conversation starter!
Bompas and Parr – create perfectly detailed moulded jellies of everything from famous landmarks, to the human body. A wonderful example of how your catering can be the spark that gets people connecting.
We all know that event technology makes big promises about helping people connect. Harriette cut through the hype. She encouraged us to start with our audience type and shared not only the solutions we should be thinking about but the behavioural tips that will ensure they’re embraced by your attendees.
Her four audience types were:
Extroverts – to extend the number of conversations consider a digital speed networking tech. Mixalot offer just the thing
For more on this topic be sure to check out our latest Super Connectors report.
Finally, Jez tackled the million dollar question – can you demonstrate that creating Super Connectors actually generates real business value?
By building event technology into highly connecting experiences we can gain a detailed picture of audience behaviour. This data, on its own, only tells us about what happens within the event. In order to understand how the experience is moving clients or prospects through the consideration funnel or leading to sales we need integrate our event technology with our business’ wider CRM systems.
Jez drew on a recent study, the Event Marketing Evolution, to show how some of the world’s biggest brands are forensically demonstrating the ROI of their events.
If you’d like to chat about any these topics in more detail do drop us a line. And keep an eye out for our monthly That’s Interesting newsletter.