Skift Take

Cameras may be the best all-in-one tool for events that currently exists. Beyond facial recognition and reading emotions, they can also provide extremely accurate real-time images of how attendees are moving around a venue.

The explosion of tech into the meetings and events space has gotten a lot of companies excited, with many looking to invest in emerging technologies such as artificial intelligence and virtual reality. For the most part, though, event management companies are focusing on very basic improvements to data capturing, such as scanning attendee badges before they enter panels. The industry was a black box for so long that even the most simple methods of tracking attendees are a big improvement on the past.

Still, the industry is very much in an experimental stage when it comes to measuring and tracking meetings. It remains difficult to get comprehensive data about attendee movement and behavior, even as the industry funnels more money into tech research and development.

With that said, cameras are emerging as one of the simplest and most effective ways to track events. More than other common tracking methods, such as Wi-Fi and radio frequency, cameras give a highly accurate view of where attendees are at any given time. Still, privacy regulations and public misperceptions about how they’re used is holding the technology back.

Nick Rosier, content and digital director at 2heads, talked to Skift about why the company has begun to invest more heavily in visual tracking methods, and how meeting planners can use them to get the most out of their events.

Check out this story, and many more, below.

If you have any feedback about the newsletter or news tips, feel free to reach out via email at or tweet @ikcarey.

Isaac Carey, Travel Reporter

The Future of Events and Meetings

Less-Invasive Cameras May Be the Future of Event Tracking: Cameras don’t always have to make people uncomfortable, especially if they’re not being used for facial recognition. Deployed as a way to monitor the flow of attendees, they are a big improvement on common tracking methods, such as wristbands embedded with Wi-Fi devices.

Niche Luxury Travel Boom Creates Demand for Exclusive Trade Shows: Luxury travel during the past decade has taken off exponentially, driven by growing wealth around the world. It’s a natural progression that niche trade shows are popping up to cater to the demand.

Hotels Experiment With Reducing Food Waste: Will All-You-Can-Eat Buffets Be History? Hotels are known for wanting to please their guests, and feeding them is one way of doing it. But food waste deteriorates the environment. Hotels are making an effort to cut down on it. So they are earning praise for trying, but they have a long way to go.

Around the Industry

How IHG’s Latest Regional Revamp Is Rankling Asia Hotel Owners: InterContinental Hotels Group isn’t afraid to change how the traditional hotel chain is organized and structured. Its latest move is making sub-regional heads directly accountable for development — even if that risks having owners think it prioritizes its own pipeline over their hotels’ performance. Some in Asia already do.

How Global Hotel Chains Differ in Approach to Asia-Pacific’s Huge Opportunity: Who has the best setup in Asia? No one-size-fits-all approaches there. But as competition increases amid a softer market, expect strategies and structures to evolve.

Battling Executive Burnout in the 24/7 Travel Business: Burnout is everywhere in our precarious global economy, but it’s especially pronounced in the travel and hospitality industry. Knowing the reasons why can help prevent it from taking over.

The Best Of EventMB

The Best of EventMB is our newest section, giving you a look into the most important and interesting content from EventMB, whether it be reports, articles, or resources for planners. EventMB joined the Skift family in September and is the largest online media resource for trends, technology, innovation, and education in the events industry.

Event Sponsorship: 117 Ideas for 2020: How do you attract sponsors to invest in your event? How do you persuade brands that you have the perfect event sponsorship opportunity for them?


Travel Reporter Isaac Carey [] curates the Skift Meetings Innovation Report. Skift emails the newsletter every Wednesday.

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Tags: meetings, meetingsiq

Photo credit: The trade show floor at the National Electrical Contractors Association's 2015 conference in San Francisco. National Electrical Contractors Association / Flickr

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