The last year has seen the Events industry bounce back faster than anyone expected. The face-to face (F2F) industry, be it exhibitions, conferences, peer-to-peer or experiential has seen a surge in growth with events participants having a renewed appreciation of the value of F2F engagement in driving sales, networking, learning and collaboration.
While the fundamental allure of in-person interactions remains unchanged, the rise of Artificial Intelligence (AI) is enabling a new era of enhanced experiences, efficient operations, and innovations within the industry.
The reasons that people attend events is unlikely to dramatically change due to AI advancements. AI technology is finding its stride in augmenting these connections, providing scope to deliver more innovative, cost effective, efficient, and tailored experiences.
Lead generation and qualification
A key part of AI’s potential impact on the events sector lies on its prowess in real-time crunching of huge amounts of data. The ability to aggregate and analyze diverse proprietary data sets (e.g. feedback, registrations, interactions, sales patterns) with third party unstructured data (e.g. social media activity and engagement) will allow rapid qualification, identification and prioritization of leads for exhibitors in advance and on the day to ultimately drive higher levels of engagement and conversion.
Efficiencies through automation
The challenges of event planning – from registration and ticketing to speaker management and content production – are now prime candidates for AI-powered automation. Chatbots are emerging as versatile assistants, addressing attendee inquiries, processing payments, and distributing tickets. This automation will not only accelerate tasks but could free up event staff to focus on value-added endeavors. Eventex, for example, has already incorporated ChatGPT into its event management platform. Behind the scenes, event logistics are becoming more streamlined by AI tools that manage speaker availability, venue capacities and attendee preferences – helping organizers be more efficient.
Innovative and tailored event experiences
AI can also create new, innovative event experiences. While Generative AI based chatbots can drive efficiencies, they can also act as virtual concierges at events, providing attendees with instant and tailored guidance. Social media monitoring becomes a powerful tool to gauge attendee sentiment in real time, which could enable rapid interventions and elevate the overall event atmosphere. Facial recognition technology is being deployed to read attendee emotions, providing a new source of real-time data that paints a vivid picture of overall feeling, albeit at the risk of invading the privacy of attendees. All of these and more can potentially be combined with data based on footfall, visitor flow, content engagement, conference attendance and more. All of this data can then be used to optimize event dynamics on the fly.
Similarly, the advent of virtual and augmented reality offers novel opportunities for hybrid events that engage both on-site and remote participants. Through real-time translation of speeches and transcripts, audiences can be extended worldwide while on the ground, participants can be engaged more actively and creatively.
AI in set design testing becomes an agile playground for organizers, who can experiment with various layouts and ideas in a low-cost, nimble fashion. This innovation will help to precisely curate F2F experiences that cater to attendees’ needs and preferences.
Utilizing cutting-edge data analytics, seamless automation, and new innovations, AI is reshaping the landscape of events, transcending them beyond conventional gatherings. Participants can take part in captivating and tailored experiences, while event organizers have an opportunity to benefit from enhanced efficiencies and the invaluable insights that support an ongoing process of improvement.
Despite the continued integration of AI, the bedrock of success for any event remains rooted in authentic human connections, rendering the industry more robust against AI disruption.
As event organizers continue to amass operational efficiencies and AI technologies enhance the value proposition for attendees, the sector remains an attractive area to explore from an investment perspective.
We look forward to continuing the conversation as the AI-story unfolds. If you have any queries or would like to have an in depth discussion on this topic or the broader market please Contact us. Our next AI article delves into the world of Software Development.