Event Tech Lab Expands Partnerships with Event Technology Start-Ups
International virtual marketing and communications incubator, Event Tech Lab, is continuing to do its part to mentor and develop the next generation of event technology companies by growing its start-up partnerships.
“There is a global remit to work with start-ups worldwide that specialize in production and logistics technology, marketing and management technology and attendee engagement technology – three areas that cover almost all event technology types,” explained James Morgan, who founded UK-based Event Tech Lab in January of 2015 as a partnership community for event tech providers and users.
He added, “These companies often do not have the contacts, communications expertise or wherewithal to communicate their products, so we help here.”
Event Tech Lab’s most recent partnership is with Rabbit, a connected lead retrieval device that enables custom branding.
Rabbit’s “Internet of Things” data-driven lead generation platform unveils visitor product preferences and movement data to event planners, data that can be used to acquire visitor lead information via the tap of a card on a reader.
Both the organizer and exhibitors as well as sponsors can set points of interest to gather leads that will automatically be synchronized with CRM systems. The technology also monitors visitor’s activity and reports back on visitor content preferences. In addition, Rabbit can work without wifi or a power supply.
“Using Rabbit, we could analyze what type of content participants were interested in at our event which is key for real success,” said Gabriella Szanto, communications director of HUNGEXPO. “Exhibitors, in turn, could follow up on their leads the same day when they collected them.”
In addition to Rabbit, Event Tech Lab’s event tech start-up partners include:
Zenus Biometrics: Helps streamline the event check-in process through facial recognition. The solution – an API that can be integrated into any registration or ticketing platform – recognizes an attendee’s facial features, checks them in and prints out the badge, facilitating individual event entry in seven seconds.
Boomset: Automation software solutions that provide event registration and facilitates fast entry with efficient onsite flows via self-service kiosks with on-demand printing. It also features in-show NFC tracking, area access control and session management/scheduling. Organizers can offer Boomset’s lead retrieval app, using an exhibitor’s personal devices, to scan and prioritize leads, take notes and download reports directly from the app to an email inbox for post-event follow up.
“(It was) so speedy, smooth and simple that there was never a line at ONUG 2017, never a hesitation, wait or hiccup for check in!” according to Paige Buck, partner at Kennedy Events.
MIO Technologies: Mio is a sociable and helpful robot that cruises busy shows to assist attendees. The robot can deliver merchandise, provide a sampling platform or sell items. Mio also entertains and can engage attendees in games such as Tic Tac Toe or can be used as a feedback mechanism in real-time.
EventBots: Sciensio makes AI Chatbots such as Betty that allow attendees to get information about an event and venue anytime, anywhere, across multiple messaging platforms, without the need to download a new app. The solution is low-friction, delivers exceptional customer support and experience, all while saving exhibition organizers time and money by having staff available to answer basic questions.
Nvytes: An easy-to-use event marketing platform that allows show organizers and exhibitors to send customizable digital invitations through email, social media and other digital marketing options. Each project can be custom-designed to match the event’s branding, while the platform is built to serve any size show.
Giant iTab: A large format touch screen tablet solution that mirrors the standard smartphone, these solutions are often used in exhibition booths as a familiar and interactive way to display content and apps. From wayfinding to displays of event apps, floor plans or exhibitor web-based technology, Giant iTabs are the same as a smartphone, just a lot bigger.
“When it comes to showcasing apps in front of large crowds, sometimes big is beautiful,” said Judy Elvey, senior marketing manager, Europe for Cvent.
She continued, “At Cvent, we create great event technology products and we want to show them off. For this we need more than a second screen display, we want high-quality hardware that replicates the experience of a smartphone or tablet. For this, Giant iTab is perfect and we use them for all our showcase events – they support both our products and our people perfectly.”
Grip: An AI-powered event networking solution that empowers professionals to facilitate quality interactions. At its core, the proprietary technology drives intelligent business recommendations through Grip’s self-learning artificial intelligence matchmaking engine. The software uses natural language processing, advanced algorithms and deep neural networks to constantly learn about the professional goals and the interests of visitors, exhibitors and sponsors.
To join the lab, start-ups can apply or be invited, although Event Tech Lab looks for new technologies that haven’t been used or developed before, Morgan explained.
“Companies approach us for advice way before they launch,” Morgan said. “For example, Zenus Biometrics chatted to us quite often before the launch of the facial recognition technology as they were not event specialists, so we advised on the development and market proposition before they joined the lab.”
The group also works with exhibition organizers to provide start-up pavilions, such as at International Confex and ibtm World; works with event teams at agencies and companies to help them adopt new technology, and creates a supportive community where start-ups can exchange knowledge, contacts and experiences.
Recently, Event Tech Lab extended its reach into start-up education via a partnership with UBM, GES EMEA and Easyfairs to launch the Start Up Clinic, a vehicle to mentor and help develop the next generation of event technology companies.
Start-up companies from countries across the globe, including Australia, Egypt, South Africa, Finland and Singapore applied for the program, with 15 finalists chosen and then whittled down to four winners: UK-based Event Pro Finder; U.S.-based Nvytes; Russian-based Radario and Canadian-based Snöball.
This “Class of 2018” will be mentored by experts within the sponsoring companies on their product proposition and development in an effort to point these fledgling companies in the right direction to succeed.
Meanwhile, mentors will be collaborating with each company and building customized mentoring programs, meeting with the start-ups on a bi-monthly basis and potentially take these technologies for a spin at live events.
To learn more about Event Tech Lab, go HERE.