Event Report: The Meetings Show 2015

PraxisUnico Events Manager, Lisa Newman reports on insights gained at The Meetings Show.

Now in its third year, The Meetings Show, is proving to be a must attend event for all event professionals. Offering a focused education programme, it provides a rare opportunity to hear first hand about the latest technology and best practice in the events sector.

With opportunities for networking, meeting with experts, as well as talking to exhibitors representing venues and suppliers from the UK and beyond, it's time well spent away from the office. The Tube strike unfortunately meant that attendee numbers were lower than usual on the final day, so there wasn't the same buzz as in previous years, however despite this it was still an extremely valuable day.

Anyone who has attended one of our courses, or the conference, in 2015 will know that PraxisUnico has produced a free events app. We've had some really helpful feedback from delegates about the app and are implementing some changes which will make it easier to access in the future and a 'how to use' guide is on the way. One of the 'meet the expert' sessions at the show, hosted by our app supplier CrowdCompass, provided lots of ideas about increasing engagement with mobile technology, in particular after an event has finished - an area we haven't yet fully explored.

Jo Egan, from Hotel Desk, presented a layman's guide to all aspects of event technology from apps to WiFi connections and AV specs to social media. This was a very helpful session that provided lots of hints and tips about techie things for non-techie people.

Much of the discussion was about event apps and the consensus appeared to be that until they can be easily accessed across all platforms, take up will remain relatively low. However apps, integrated with the likes of Beacon technology, can be harnessed to collect useful data onsite allowing organisers to make informed decisions and potentially change behaviours, making for better events.

While iBeacons, Google Glass (watch this space) virtual and augmented reality may not be things that will be appearing at PraxisUnico events anytime soon, they will increasingly be put to use in venues and at larger shows and exhibitions.
The discussion with other attendees revealed that we all have very similar problems and it highlighted a real need for more training on AV and technology so that event professionals know the right questions to ask in order to get the right results.