2023 saw a return of in-person gatherings, marking a pivotal moment in events. As we dive into the current year, we’re set to witness some exciting trends and innovations in event technology aimed at enhancing in-person experiences.
In this blog, we’ll provide a glimpse into the major strides made by vFairs in in-person tech solutions. We’ll talk about what’s on the horizon, promising event organizers even more tools to elevate their events.
The Rise of In-Person Events
Here’s what we’ll discuss:
- Increased demand for in-person event tech
- How can tech help organizers streamline pre-event processes?
- How can tech help make a great impression on-site?
- How can attendees stay connected through the app at all times?
- How can hosts track the performance of in-person events?
Increased Demand for In-Person Events Tech
vFairs has been helping customers with in-person events even before the pandemic. Since 2022, vFairs has seen a 12x increase in in-person events hosted. So, in-person events are back with a full-blown demand.
We have seen that event planners are leveraging in-person event technology to improve the attendee experience. Organizers using in-person event tech have a 35% higher retention rate than those who do not.
Event organizers are using the badge printing app solution even if they’re hosting a small internal company event. Getting a badge in 10 seconds or less at the event makes for a great first impression on the attendees and enhances their experience. The demand for onsite tech and check-in solutions shows that onsite event technology has become table stakes for organizations.
How Can Tech Help Organizers Streamline Pre-Event Processes
At vFairs, we’ve spent 2023 learning what gaps event tech can help address through key challenges our clients face. Streamlining pre-event processes through onsite technology is a key priority for many of our customers. Here are some updated and upcoming features in the vFairs platform that can help:
Accommodation and Management
vFairs has launched an accommodation management module so the organizers can manage the travel and accommodation logistics for their event. They can book hotels and reserve rooms for certain guests using the vFairs backend.
Seat Booking & Waitlists for Venues
You can allow your attendees to book seats in a hall. If the seats are already reserved, you can enable wait lists. Sometimes sessions run with multiple tracks and there can be limited seats for a webinar. In such situations, just like in cinemas, people can reserve their seats and will know exactly where to sit with the vFairs platform.
Future Roadmap: vFairs will allow you to create an entire interactive floor map so that exhibitors can come and choose their preferred booth, and attendees can easily find places of interest inside the venue.
How Can Tech Help Make a Great Impression Onsite
Gone are the days when people struggled to find their names in long alphabetical lists manually or had to wait hours in line to check in to an event. Now, event tech has changed that. Attendees can check in via a QR code scan in seconds, drastically improving their first impressions of the event.
Event organizers get all the stats of how many people have checked in and even get SMS alerts for VIPs to greet them at the gate. vFairs offers different types of badges including PVC badges, paper-card badges, eco-friendly badges, and more.
Future Roadmap: vFairs will also support all third-party registration QR codes. Facial recognition for badge printing is also on the roadmap. vFairs is planning to allow event hosts to print badges as someone enters the venue.
Tulare County Office of Education (TCOE) has hosted over 50 virtual and in-person events with vFairs to combat teacher shortages in California and fill classrooms with classified staff. They’ve partnered with 65 universities, 700 school districts, and 40 county offices of education.
They shared their experience with vFairs onsite event tech at vFairs’ user conference DiscoverNext. The attendees loved getting their badges printed along with the lanyards on the spot and started talking to representatives right away. The onsite event tech helped candidates navigate the location, check the floor maps, which districts are there to offer jobs and upload their resumes with just a scan.
There were 500 onsite booth interactions via mobile app QR scanning, 100+ attendees per event, and 1000+ attendees on online the platform.
How Can Hosts Keep Attendees Updated About Everything Happening Onsite
Event organizers can keep attendees in the loop by sending out notifications and alerts. There is a live event feed where people can post selfies, videos, and pictures as they check in within the mobile app. It’s like Facebook but for your events. It creates tons of engagement and activity in any in-person event.
The organizers can also send push notifications to attendees to keep them updated with whatever is happening at the event. These notifications can either be sent to all or a particular segment of the audience. Attendees can customize their calendars instead of seeing the whole event agenda through the in-person event tech.
How Can Hosts Track the Performance of In-person Events
Through reporting and analytics dashboards, organizers can track the performance of their events. Here are the vFairs onsite event reporting features:
- Collect data about check-ins to the event and sessions.
- See the real-time custom dashboard for data visualization through the app.
- The AI Reporting Chatbot answers questions related to event analytics.
- Access post-event reports and CSV exports.
- Dashboards with metrics across multiple events to compare the performance simultaneously.
- Improved check-in, badge printing & mobile app analytics dashboards.
Future Roadmap: vFairs will be offering not only QR codes but also RFID-based session scanning.
The Key Role of Event Mobile Apps in Driving Event Success
Mobile Apps are The Secret Weapon for Successful Onsite Events
Almost 91% of event organizers are using event apps and they see them as crucial for the success of an event. Mobile event apps help hosts, attendees & exhibitors extract untapped value from events. The app is making things more efficient and helping you better plan your time, schedule, and networking efforts onsite.
These mobile event apps help in engagement and networking before, during, and after events. They help capture and nurture high-quality leads to be used in the future. Creating specific apps dedicated to various onsite event needs offers a more streamlined experience for all users including hosts, exhibitors, and attendees.
Our mobile apps address these specific needs and challenges. You can use them in conjunction with each other through the all-in-one vFairs backend or separately, based on your needs. vFairs offers:
How Can Onsite Attendees Connect Pre, During & Post-Event
The vFairs mobile app helps attendees learn a bit more about the event once it’s announced. They can search and connect with profiles they want to network with before the event begins. Attendees can chat with each other and book meetings with individuals and groups in a round table.
Also, they can make notes about new contacts, conversations, and follow-up notes. This way the app allows the attendees to network with each other even after the event is over.
Another problem organizers face is unstable WiFi in a particular venue. To address this challenge, the vFairs app has announced a new offline mode that saves all the information including QR code, and agenda.
How Can Attendees Stay Connected Through the App at All Times
vFairs mobile app can scan all the attendees checking in, but we realized that for exhibitors and sponsors, the main goal is to capture leads and nurture them. To counter this problem, we launched a different vFairs Lead Capture App.
This app allows organizers to scan QR codes and business cards, and even create manual contacts. Exhibitors and sponsors can score those leads, make notes to add context, and mark them as favorites. Organizers can also access individual and team-based reports, leaderboards, and analytics.
Future Roadmap: Customers will be able to create custom lead-qualifying questions and will be able to enjoy additional CRM integrations.
How Can Hosts Drive More Value for Sponsors & Exhibitors
The vFairs app has ad slots for sponsors and exhibitors to promote their branding. It includes dedicated splash & banner ads, branded push notifications, live feed posts, and a sponsor hub. There are mobile app exhibit booths, product listings, and shopping carts to display their products and sell them. Not only that, you get detailed ROI reports and engagement metrics to measure the success of an event.
For the National Urban League annual conference, the vFairs white-labeled mobile app offered a branding space for sponsors with customized exhibit halls, booths, and lobbies. They managed to get 7,342+ attendees and 1,057+ job applications using the mobile app for their annual conference.
As we step into 2024, vFairs is committed to bringing innovation in its in-person technology with features like budget management, accommodation management, seat booking, and RFID-based session scanning.