As far as I can remember there was no such thing as ‘event startups’ when we called them that the first time. We take much pride in having supported and fuelled the #eventtech revolution.
Over 55,000 users tuned into our annual presentation and report about the trends in event planning and event technology. We highlighted 30 innovative platforms, products and venues to follow this year.
We have collected over 1,000 event startups in our Pinterest board and we receive daily submissions in our dedicated event startup portal.
This is to say we are quite serious about promoting the use of technology in the industry and making sure you are up to date with the latest tools available to help you run better events.
Here is a collection – in no particular order – of 10 new products we believe you should check out this month.
10 Startup Apps
Social Playground is a breath of branding freshness together with an interesting product offer. They offer a very good looking Instagram printer to make the online world of Instagram real. Together with that they feature a live Instagram wall where attendees can see live pictures.
Instagram is becoming an integral part of the savvy event planner’s content plan. Social Playground helps you capture those pictures and touch them in real life.
NetworkTables is the latest entrant in the social seating marketplace. Seating attendees socially was one of the main trends for 2014 and still going strong in 2015.
Leaving seating to chance is plain stupid in some types of events. NetworkTables helps to seat attendees wisely without wasting serendipity and networking opportunities.
The idea behind Snapifeye is quite simple: branding photos to increase awareness over social media. The focus of this platform is very valid as it empowers the event team on the field to increase the value of their photo snapping exercise.
Too many times there is no way to distinguish official event pictures. Snapifeye gives you the ability to quickly brand them with your or your sponsor logo. In the latter case that mean extra revenue and boy, do we like extra revenue?!
For the first time ever we include a venue in our roundup. As we strive to create a #drench experience in 2015, we realise that venues are an integral part of our event technology plan. Hence why giving space to new, tech focussed venues is part our mission going forward.
Flow-space is a cool new space in the funky NYC’s Meatpacking District. Things like Airplay connectivity, untethered Skype video conferencing, LED mood lighting are becoming necessary aspects to deliver immersive experiences. Flow-space is one to watch for meetings and product launches.
I am quite excited about Phototap. The concept is very simple, NFC powered picture sharing. You register your social networks and email upon checking into the event then whenever someone from the event takes a picture of you just swipe your bracelet and the picture is sent to your Facebook, Twitter or email account.
If you’ve ever been to Disneyworld you will be familiar with the concept of the Magicband which is becoming the guest remote control to pay, collect pictures and check into attractions. Photomap is bringing these photo sharing elements to an event near you.
Slidebox is a new player in the fast growing slidesharing and live interaction market. One of the most problematic aspects of this technology is integration and support. Slidebox powers a software as a service platform that works on Mac or PC.
They emphasize the presence at the event being there to assist and help, making sure that no problem arises. Think of them as an AV team on steroids.
Micebook is an early beta of what looks like an interesting concept. The marketplace, matchmaking arena is becoming very crowded. Micebook’s angle is towards all the stakeholders involved in the MICE industry: DMCs, Tourism Bureaus, Hotels, Airlines and Representation Companies.
The emphasis is on quality and exchanging a reputable supplier database that could help corporate and association planners discover and save vendors.
One of the problems with current event technology is fragmentation and lack of integration. As an event professional or conference CTO, you could end up with several tech silos that work seamlessly but do not talk to each other.
Limelight is training to offer a one stop management and promotion platform offering tools that span from guest list management to RSVP collection, survey, contests and email marketing. It is a interesting hybrid registration/management/promotion tool appealing to an ever growing number of small to medium sized events.
Interesting, quirky concept by this platform that aims to connect brands with events. It is a sponsorship/exhibition matchmaking service, very popular lately. 10by10 focuses on offering brands reviews, stats and data about potential events and matches for exhibition space or sponsorship.
The service helps events discover and manage new sponsorship opportunities. Although the explanation on the site about what exactly the platform offers needs refining, the concept is surely worth following.
Edit: Link no longer exists
By no mean least, the cleverly named Eventopedia. ‘Another venue finding site!’ – you may think. Not quite. You can tell Eventopedia has been put together by a team that knows the meetings and events industry.
Supercool features that make it worth investigating are the Virtual Site Inspection (Available as an upgrade), an iPad app to display the venue and manage the sales funnel, a Job Finder for those looking for a position and an electronic RFP tool. All in one!
The successful event professional is curious enough to experiment and try new things. While we will never ask you to revolutionise the way you plan your event, it doesn’t hurt to bring value to your attendees by trying a little new technology.
So time to go and try out one of these cool startup tools!
As always, I ask you to share this round-up with your colleagues and network, these young guns creating technology for the event industry will be incredibly grateful!