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2019 TRENDS FOR CONFERENCE EVENTS

Everything is changing, everything is being improved and we all have to adapt to the occasion. Marketers know very well that the industry (no matter which one) is always buzzing and there are more and more trends that could seriously influence everyone’s business. Event planners are the ones who probably need to always keep an eye out for the new trends.  Hosting out of date events is something that not many attendees will tolerate. Therefore, if you don’t want to lose your valuable guests, take a look at some of the upcoming conference events trends that will change the game considerably.

Taking advantage of technology

It is certain that marketers and event planners will rely more and more on technology. Attendees (and we all) are glued to the phones most of the time. Even when attending a conference event. That’s why some companies come up with apps designed specifically for the event. Visitors can find important pieces of information through those apps, they can find boots, dates and times of certain sessions, main speakers and some even go so far and gamify those apps to improve the engagement. Hence, it is inevitable that we’ll see more and more of these apps pop up in 2019.

Mental and physical health awareness at the conferences

This may sound odd but attendees nowadays expect top notch catering services at conferences. To be more precise, we’re living in the age of health conscious dining and that calls for better and more expensive food services. Considering this global trend, there is no doubt that new, modern conferences will have focus put on organic and sustainable, handmade dishes. Also, attendees like to eat at their leisure throughout the day so we can all say goodbye to structured meal times. Another peculiar thing that has to be mentioned is the tendency of incorporating mental health sessions into the itinerary. Marketers will bring in business psychologists to discuss work life balance or health professionals that are there to consult guests.

Emphasis on venues

More and more companies dedicate lots of time to the selection of the perfect venue. Everyone wants their conference event to be unique, everyone wants people to remember their events and come back again. Hence, there is a need for unique venues. For example, ‘secret bars’ in London are becoming quite popular. These are ‘off the grid’ venues that offer space for a cool and sophisticated conference event. They are exclusive and they have that speakeasy vibe. Considering that there are more and more venues that offer special benefits if you want to organize your even there, many marketers opt for renting a venue away from the office or company building. Expect to see new quirky venues for new events in 2019.

Themes, themes, themes

Hosts are doing everything they can to create immersive atmospheres at their events. They are embracing the dramatics of theming and that doesn’t only involve the venue, it involves catering, lighting and other details. Conferences will be transformed completely to suit the company’s chosen theme. Even if there is no specific theme, you can rest assured that a certain style or vibe will be present. Rock and roll, carnival or roaring 20s, you can expect it all in 2019.

Conferences tailored to your preferences

The actual presentation, the gist of the event is oftentimes what’s not the top priority to most attendees. That’s why many companies and marketers turn to incentive activities and packages for their guests. Attendees expect these functions to reflect their personal needs and preferences. Inviting guests to pre-select their choice of incentive activity or providing restaurant recommendations in order that guests can maximize their downtimes makes a big difference. That’s how attendees get the impression that they are valued and respected. If you still haven’t considered doing this for your events, you need to start doing it. It’s a new trend and it’s here to stay.

Conclusion

Times are changing and so are people. Every industry is changing and so are the trends. Event planning isn’t easy and marketing is a field that is prone to change. Marketers and business that are unprepared for these changes end up suffering in the end. That’s why it would be good to revise these upcoming trends and take what you can to your advantage. 2019 is around the corner, be prepared.

This is  a guest blog post by Dan McCarthy.

Dan McCarthy is an Event Manager at Ultimate Experience and Mask, event companies part of Concerto Group, based in the UK. Dan has 5 years of event project management under his belt. He has worked on many successful events, and currently he shares his knowledge by writing on the company blog. Follow him on Twitter @DanCarthy2