As someone who sees a wide array of event designs in the 30-40 events I attend annually, it is refreshing to see a number of innovative event designs in a single conference. This was the case with the recent EventTech conference in Las Vegas, produced by EventMarketer.com.
The two-and-a-half-day conference drew about 700 attendees and took place at the Paris Las Vegas Hotel & Casino. The entire program (the exhibition, five conference tracks and breakfast, lunch and receptions) was held in the 85,000-square-foot Paris Ballroom. With a single, centralized location, everything was easy to find and the exhibitors enjoyed a constant flow of attendees.
Here are some of the novel ideas showcased at the event that planners may consider incorporating.
1. IR headsets for presentation tracks: During the check-in process, attendees received a small receiver and headphone provided by Conference Rental to access the session content. The main theater (Lab 1) was located in the center of the hall and the four additional track locations were in each corner of the hall.
Lab 1 (the center location for the plenary sessions and one of the tracks) was set in comfortable writing desk chairs for about 225 people (with presentation slides and audio distributed to the corner lab locations for overflow). The sound for all of the sessions was distributed via headsets. Attendees could clearly receive the audio in each room while there was no sound bleed from the educational tracks into the exhibit hall or other sessions.
2. Guided exhibit tours with RF headsets: The first two nights of the three-day event had early evening receptions, leaving time for client dinners and exploring the many evening attractions of Las Vegas. Two exhibit tours were held during each reception. Each tour highlighted about 10 exhibitors (with different exhibitors for each tour). Interested attendees met near the center of the hall. Each received a separate wireless radio frequency listening device (with headphones) and were guided through the exhibit hall. Each exhibitor had a two-minute pitch about their product (a teaser to come back for more information). The audio receivers made it easy for attendees to hear the exhibitors’ comments throughout the noisy exhibit hall.
3. Digital signage: Although commonplace at many events these days, extensive digital signage with social links and polling were provided throughout the event by ETechEvents, guiding attendees with engaging, animated large LCD signage.
4. Silent disco: HUSHConcerts provided a novel and very entertaining option for reception entertainment held at the north end of the exhibit hall. Three DJs offered distinctly different music channels via high-quality wireless headsets. Each headset had a channel switch and glowed red, blue or green depending on the channel selected. This provided a range of music options for those interested while not bleeding sound into the exhibit hall or to those simply wanting to carry on conversations.
5. Networking and contact exchange: Klik provided wristbands that made contact exchange as easy at pushing the center of the wristband and putting it close to another activated wristband. A few days after the conference, each attendee received a spreadsheet with all of the leads collected.
It is expected that an event entitled EventTech would showcase a variety of technology options. This meeting did not disappoint in this regard. The innovations mentioned above are just a few of the options presented.