The Future of Meetings & Events

For the last five or six years, the two biggest trends in meeting-design strategy have revolved around the rise of event technology and the emergence of Millennials. The meetings industry seems to be moving on, however, because event tech and Gen Y psychographics have now blended permanently into the mainstream.

Can we all just stop saying “hybrid meetings,” just like we did “new media” a couple of years ago?

For 2017, everything gets super multidisciplinary. There’s going to be more emphasis on convergence to connect more people from different industries; a continued rise in the festivalization in meetings, and a growing awareness that events should be leveraged as omni-channel, experiential brand-marketing platforms to help attendees plug into messaging in more ways at more times in more places.

Read about the three big 2017 meetings trends here.

— Greg Oates, Senior Editor

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Social Quote of the Day

“.@meetingsmeanbiz recaps a year of achievements. Watch the year-end video here: ow.ly/471t307n5ZL

@USTravel

Next Generation Meeting UX

The 3 Primary Trends Disrupting the Meetings and Events Industry in 2017: The meetings industry is evolving beyond its preoccupation with event technology and the impact of Millennials over the last five years. The new focus for 2017 revolves around developing more multidisciplinary business events, integrating education and entertainment, to engage attendees in new ways on different levels. Read more at Skift

How This App Uses Augmented Reality to Drive Traffic for Events: A new Pokemon Go-like mobile app uses location-based augmented reality to create a treasure hunt with real prizes. Say what you will about the Pokemon craze but the underlying AR tech is revolutionary in its ability to move people around a destination. Read more at BizBash

Paddy Cosgrave, Network Effect and 360 Degrees Of Guesses: An interview with Web Summit CEO Paddy Cosgrave discusses how the event uses Facebook-like algorithms to match attendees with like-minded interests, for both onsite meetings and after-hours pub crawls. Start at the 20:00-minute mark. Listen at Venture Beat

Machine Learning: The Big Draw at a Big Beijing Event: The organizers of the one-day International Summit on Machine Learning in Beijing hoped to attract 400 registrants but they ended up with 28,000. Content ranged from emotional robotics to AI-powered urban planning. Read more at IBM

2017 Preview: Emerging Event Tech You Should Know About: Various twists on reality— augmented, virtual, and mixed — are driving the biggest buzz around new technology products and strategies that will influence face-to-face experiences this year. Read more at BizBash

Evenium ConnexMe: Taking Event Engagement to the Next Level [Review]: Evenium ConnexMe added new features for engagement, brainstorming, and collaboration to their event app. Read more at Event Manager Blog

Tech & Business Conferences

Robotics, VR Content Take Center Stage at CES, but Where Is Cannabiz? At the gargantuan tech conference in Las Vegas this week, two of the most exciting tech markets this year will be robotics and virtual reality content. However, another fast-growing tech market, that of cannabis startups, will be noticeably absent. Read more at Inc

CES Isn’t About the Gadgets: Wired writer asks: “Do people want smart doorbells? Lights? Toasters? Waffle irons? Cars? Washing machines? Sex toys? You could make a case for any of them, but the market so far seems to favor none. So these companies keep pushing.” Read more at Wired

The Top 30 Conferences for Entrepreneurs in 2017: For diehard tech and business conference junkies, welcome to your nerd nirvana. Read more at Inc

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The Skift Meetings Innovation Report is curated by Skift Senior Editor Greg Oates [[email protected]]. The newsletter is emailed every Wednesday.

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Photo Credit: CES 2017 kicks off in Las Vegas this week with a big focus on virtual reality, artificial intelligence, robotics, and driverless transportation. Mercedes-Benz