Why Big Data offers giant benefits for the event industry
Meetings and events have the inherent ability to deliver truly personal experiences built upon the platform of direct interaction. Experts in the event industry appreciate that producing a dynamic and exciting experience does not come easy.
Significant among the challenges are the relative complexities of event execution and the difficulty assessing an event’s value. Thankfully that is changing for the better – at least for those who harness the power of Big Data.
Big Data is rapidly transforming the way stakeholders plan events within the meetings and events industry and event managers should carefully consider the impact and implications of these data-driven business trends.
The event ecosystem is becoming smarter and more robust. Marketing automation, event management software and customer relationship management platforms continue to mature and help us profile, segment, and interact with specific communities of interest. The outcomes of our digital outreach campaigns provide us with additional opportunities to better understand our customers and markets.
Event technology has enabled us to monitor and capture the activity that occurs during our events. Wearables, iBeacons, Radio-Frequency IDentification (a small electronic device that consists of a small chip, an antenna, and is capable of carrying 2,000 bytes of data or less) and event mobile apps act as sensors at a scale and level of precision we could not possibly achieve otherwise.
The combined result is an enormous treasury of data that encapsulates valuable insights: the session topics that are drawing the most attention, the promotional exercises that delivered the highest on-site conversion, the keynotes that best justified their speaking fees, the attendees who visited competitors’ booths over yours, the common characteristics of the most and least engaged attendees. Such insights can have a tremendous impact on your next event.
Clients often review and compare performance metrics while allocating budgets for events. Accessing those metrics is simple for digital channels such as email, web, online advertising and social media. However, for live meetings and events, providing such metrics is a challenge which is gradually changing due to the event technology ecosystem.
Many clients are regularly acting upon insights gained from benchmarking their event’s key activity performance metrics that can be compared over the past several years. So while these clients continue to conduct post-event surveys they increasingly benefit from utilising their event data in real-time.
The decision to work more closely with your event data can be exciting although it can also generate some apprehension.
To choose wisely, one or two key metrics you need to improve the organisation of your event, is not an easy task. Data can often be intimidating; not all data is easily created or comprehended and employable. Being new to the world of Big Data can be much like stepping into the water for your maiden swim. But once you find your rhythm, it is a smooth glide.