A simple, well designed registration process can have a huge impact on the success of an event. Small details can be critical so it is important to carefully plan this stage to decrease complications and promote higher attendance. Simplify your conference’s registration process with these 5 strategies to improve the experience for your attendees and ensure registrations are completed as quickly and efficiently as possible.

You are part of a company you believe in, tasked with managing conferences intended to generate participation, membership, and ultimately to increase sales. Yet it can be a challenge to define metrics and measure the return on investment.

For many people, the real value of a conference is in networking with existing colleagues and meeting new partners, clients, and friends. Some may not attend an event expressly to network, but almost everyone will agree that networking is valuable. Conference organizers acknowledge its importance, but how often do they take an active role in ensuring that networking opportunities are designed to be easy, comfortable, and effective? Why aren’t more events building networking-focused activities into their events? What tools can event organizers employ to promote quality networking? I’ve compiled a list of 5 ways that you can facilitate networking at your next event.

Chances are if you’ve been paying attention you’ve heard the term iBeacon. Some of the world’s largest events have begun using iBeacons to engage their attendees and provide an interactive experience that has the industry buzzing. If you haven’t heard the term it’s time you caught up with this exciting new technology. iBeacons are low-powered transmitters developed by Apple that can sense the proximity of nearby iOS devices and send and receive notifications using Bluetooth LE (Low Energy). That might not sound like a revolutionary technology but it could have some powerful implications for how we use our mobile devices at events. iBeacons are currently deployed in a number of applications. They have been used in select retail stores to display customized shopping experiences based on the user’s habits and preferences. In this case, the beacons can offer on-demand product information and allow for mobile transactions at the till. They have also been adopted by MLB who uses the technology to engage with fans at their stadiums across the US. While this type of technology has shown some promise, it is also at the centre of a heated debate. The potential for misuse in the form of unwanted push-notifications or ads has many people wary. It’s easy to imagine a scenario where consumers are mercilessly targeted by advertisers who simply see iBeacons as a new channel for spam. If the early adopters are conscientious, however, and use the technology to promote relevant content and interaction, it could become an effective way for brands to interact and connect with their customers. While widespread use of iBeacons is far from imminent, they are becoming increasingly popular with the event management industry. iBeacons were used at some of the highest profile events in 2014 where the technology generated a considerable amount of attention. This year’s SXSW festival in Austin, Texas debuted their mobile event app with iBeacon functionality for select sessions and on-site registration. For instance, an attendee within proximity of the registration area would receive a registration code and a welcome notification. SXSW installed beacons around the Austin Convention Centre and in select venues around the festival. At a Pepsi sponsored music event at SXSW, iBeacons were used to power Lightwave wristbands, a new form of wearable technology. The wristbands provide real-time data on audience movement, temperature, and sound levels. Using an accelerometer embedded in the Lightwave, Pepsi measured audience movement to judge a dance competition and ranked audience members on a leaderboard. While using beacons and wearable tech to judge a dance competition sounds pretty cool, it may not be the sort of application that will have an impact on the event industry. So let’s take a look at a few ways iBeacons could help us manage events and improve the attendee experience.

Does your event really need a mobile app?

You own a smartphone, yet if you’ve been to a conference lately there’s a good chance you didn’t get a functional, well designed app to personalize and streamline your event experience. Why is that?

Making Event Management Beautiful

Modest beginnings

When Patrick, Mike and I were laid off from the company we worked for in 2000, we didn’t quite know what lay ahead for us as software engineers. But, even with the gummy mess of the post dot-com bubble all around us, we actually didn’t seem too concerned at all. We were young, naive and frugal… and, more importantly, we had our Macs, an internet connection and an Airport to share between us :). Our unemployed spirits were generally high over the coming months as we casually convened to geek out and code in each other’s living rooms. I think that we knew in our gut of guts that reality would eventually get the better of us and we’d need to get back to work!

INTRODUCTION: IIn 2014 many sectors of the event industry experienced a significant shift in how they use event-focused technologies. Thanks to increased adoption of mobile based technologies, further inroads into advanced reporting and analytics, and new approaches to increase attendee participation, many conferences are benefiting from next-generation thinking and tools. These trends will continue in 2015 and likely define how we will see it a year from now. Here’s a look at 5 technologies that will make events stand out as industry leaders in 2015.