images from multiple events and the text "2019 event trends"

2019 Event Trends. What to keep an eye out for

Based on my personal experience and the know-how of our event planning partners, I’ve put together a list on what we at Oveit expect to be the 2019 event trends.  This is far from being exhaustive, but I hope it will help you prepare for the year that lays ahead. Let’s have a meaningful and successful 2019.

Authenticity

In order to emotionally connect with attendees, authenticity needs to be one of the most important assets of your events. Line-ups, activities, brand activations and displays, everything will need to be in harmony with your stated values.

Event authenticity is mostly about being faithful to your stated values and loyal to your attendees. Trends will come and go, but your identity (based on your beliefs) cannot change from one year to another. Authenticity determines the trust in your brand, but it’s also the second most important factor for millennials to decide if they support a brand or not (the first being loyalty discounts).

authenticity as event trends for 2019. arrow showing that for 90% of millennials brand authenticity is important

Authenticity means being faithful to your stated values and loyal to your guests. It means that you are not afraid to show who you are and that you are not afraid to stand for what you believe in. Not everybody will be on the same page with you, but it is impossible to please everyone. And not everybody should be your guest, partner or sponsor – as your sets of values should apply to them as well.

For example: if you host your events outdoor and plead for ecology, having a company known for polluting the environment as a sponsor will make you look untrue (to be gentle).

Stay true to yourself and stay true to your attendees. In the long run, it will really make a difference.

Families with small children – one of the 2019 Event Trends

When it comes to events in general (and music festivals in particular), in the last 4 years families with small children saw the highest increase when it comes to attending rate. A study conducted by Starcom shows that more than 25% of the questioned young parents consider concert/festivals as a proper experience for children. And this should be of no surprise as millennials, members of the generation that chooses experiences over goods, have reached the parenthood age.

This change brings new challenges for the event organizers, but new opportunities as well. Child activities are becoming “a thing” at events, but are also a good way for brands to use them as new marketing channels. New sponsors can be interested in your events. You can now open new revenue streams by offering dedicated services for families with children.

Obviously, if your event is not child-friendly (for reasons that are beyond your power) you should mention it from the beginning. Don’t try to attract this category for events where kids will not feel welcome or where it is not safe for them. As I have mentioned before, it’s important that you create an authentic experience and this may mean that your event is not crafted for everyone.

Personalized experiences. Based on the relevant information

I’ve always been a huge fan of personalized experiences. I strongly believe that this is a great way of showing your guests they truly matter to you, that they are not just another sold ticket.

However – to offer personalized experiences you will first need to know what your attendees like. You will need to collect data about their favorite artist/speaker, along with their demographics, in order to create some cohort reports that will get you one step closer to creating a memorable experience.

This is why we have developed our NFC-based engagement features. We opted for NFC because it’s fast and secure. And believe me, attendees treasure their time. Nobody will be happy to repeat the same process over and over again each time they want to engage an exhibitor or join a gamification feature. The times when attendees were forced to manually enter all their information are over. Or so it should. Our software allows them to communicate with just a simple tap of the hand.

The same process is available to check their purchasing habits. Data is paired to your attendees’ information in order to use them for your current and future events.

Use a registration form to collect attendee data. Allow them to engage your exhibitors with a simple tap. GDPR compliant, of course.

photo showing 2 people and a device used for attendee engagement

Tablet and NFC reader used for attendee engagement. Source: Pioneers ’18

Connect attendee data to your cashless payment system information. See what attendees like and what they dislike. See which are the areas they like to spent their time in or which sessions/artist they find attractive.

Offer a customized experience without being too intrusive. Your attendees want a customized experience. But they don’t want to make an effort each time you need their data.

Contact us for more info on the “tap and engage” feature.

Social responsibility. More than a 2019 event trend

With generation Z reaching the “wow, I love events” age, social responsibility should get an important place on your agenda. Why? Because soon Gen Z and millennials will represent the most important age segment of your guests. And they take social responsibility extremely seriously.

Yes, by creating communities, events are changing the world, making it a better place. But this may not be enough.

Useful ideas:

  • Have Non-profits as exhibitors at your events; this way you will help them engage attendees and make their causes know.
  • Redirect a percentage from your tickets income to a social cause.
  • Support an existing cause by offering them exposure in your marketing campaigns.
  • If you host outdoor events you can re-energize an area with a damaged environment and host your event there.

But your efforts need to be for something you believe in. Don’t do it just for the publicity. People can tell.

As mentioned in a previous article, 80% of Gen Z feels that social responsibility is mandatory for brands. It’s not a trend, not just an option, it’s something that we all must support. It’s our duty.

Event marketing trends for 2019. Micro-influencers

Forbes recently published the  “11 trends that will shape marketing in 2019” article, pointing out 11 marketing trends that we all should focus on this year. But one really caught my attention: the growth of micro-influencers. I admit I have a personal affinity toward influencer marketing. I have written an article on how to use influencer marketing to promote your events, so I will not plead for it again. But I will mention one of the most important reasons for which influencer marketing is on the rise (besides banner blindness and the likes):

  • influencer marketing is closer to  word of mouth marketing than it is to traditional marketing

And this is BIG. We trust other humans’ feedback over a brand more than we trust its marketing messages. It’s reasonable. People follow social media influencers for the content they create, but also because they like them as humans. They trust them. This is why Influencer Marketing is so powerful.

Micro-influencers, a 2019 (event marketing) trend, are social influencers that have a smaller group of followers, but also the strongest engagement with their audience. Their connection is genuine. Their content is not created for everyone but suited for a niche. And that.

Would you rather work with a celebrity? That’s fine, but remember that 70% of the millennials prefer a brand that is endorsed by a non-celebrity influencer.

1 on 1 meetings

There’s nothing new here: conferences and business events are gold when it comes to meeting new people. If you are hosting such events I am sure you have noticed that the networking element is something your attendees really appreciate. In fact, this is so important that a google search for “networking at events” gives us over 350M results.  And this is why it made it to my 2019 event trends list.

print screen from google search of "networking tat events"

source: google.com

There are tons of articles that are trying to teach people how to become better and better are networking. And people are reading them. I’ve heard it from hundreds of attendees. The interest is real.

What can you do to help attendees network?

Start with a designated area. Pioneers ’18 had a designated area for one on one meetings and people loved it.

Have a 1:1 meeting feature in your event app.

Use a designated 1:1 meeting app: using our open API it’s easier than ever to send collected data (through registration forms) to third-party apps.

Help people connect and your event will quickly become the “go to” for professionals from multiple industries.

Although the year has just begun and surprises may occur, these are 6 of the 2019 event trends that I will keep an eye for. Hope my article helps you prepare for this great year that lays ahead.

7 reasons why you should use a cashless payments solution for events

I am a huge fan of the cashless payments solution, there’s no secret here. Today I would like to list 7 of the most important benefits of using one for your events.

picture showing Oveit's cashless payment solution used at an event
1. The cashless payments solution increases your revenue

As the cash habit fades away, customers tend to increase their spending limit. Reports show that attendees tend to spend up to 30% more at events where a cashless payment system is in place. They love to buy, but they just don’t like the long queues that make them lose all the fun. Which takes us to reason #2.

2. It speeds up transactions


The tap and pay system is, by far, the fastest way to process transactions. According to American Express, cashless payments are 63% faster than cash transactions and 53% faster than classic debit/credit card transactions. Each transaction can be processed in under 5 seconds, a mid-sized cashless payment set-up allowing you to process over 20 transactions/second.

3.Detailed live reports

The cashless payment system gives you live access to real-time data. It’s 100% transparent, allowing you and your partners to see live how much money attendees are spending (and how). It also allows you to create “cohort reports” and segment your attendees based on their spending habits (and combine those reports to any demographic data you have collected).

4. Fraud and losses become a thing of the past

With a cashless payment system in place, fraud becomes almost impossible. Not handling cash or tokens will make it impossible for someone to steal the vendor’s income or the attendees’ money. Human errors may still appear, but with an easy to use cashless payment system, they are highly unlikely and easy to correct.

5.Multiple revenue streams

Using smart NFC tags for payments allows you to also use them for attendee engagement and experiential marketing. The event ticket is paired to the tag (that can be stored into the event wristband, card, or badge) and allows attendees to interact by a simple tap of the hand. It can also be used for smart screens and gamification, converting your event into one fun ecosystem. And sponsors are always attracted to new ideas for attendee engagement.

6. Less staff needed for access control

The event wristband can also store your attendees’ access credentials. Permissions can be checked by a simple tap to an NFC receiver, allowing you to delegate your team members to more important tasks. It’s also faster than traditional scanning, allowing attendees to move to different sections of your festival without having to wait in endless queues.

7. Increased overall attendee experience

I have saved it for last but in my opinion, this is the most important benefit of using a cashless payment system. The speed and safety that it adds to your event will make the whole experience unforgettable. Not having to carry your wallet, being able to purchase a beer without having to wait for ages, allowing you to use your wristband to claim perks, those are all benefits that we all crave for.

Why use our cashless payments solution?

What differentiates us? With Oveit you can set up a cashless payment solution without the need for expensive hardware. We have developed a mobile app that transforms your mobile phone into a powerful and easy to use POS. No need for special scanners or NFC devices; add credit and record purchases using just day to day mobile phones.
Another reason why you should definitely use or solution is that it works both online and offline. And because it does not require a special set-up it can be used in any location you wish. Like a remote island or the top of a mountain.

Contact us for more info.

Creative ways to use our event management software

From day one we wanted to develop Oveit into more than just a ticketing app, to develop it into a complete event management software. We always knew that technology can help you offer unforgettable experiences to your guests. Time passed, we developed new features, and clients started using our software for complex situations. Today I will tell you how our partners use Oveit’s features in ways that may surprise you. Maybe you are looking for an event management software that you can use in an “unconventional” way (yes, we now that you are looking for more than a ticketing software), so go ahead and find some inspiration below.

 

Great way to collect shout-outs 

I am found of all creative ideas, but I will start with the idea one of our partners had not too long ago.  They were using Oveit to sell tickets for a high-school musical show. Also wanted to give parents a way to support their children by allowing them to buy some “shout outs” in the event programme. They had a dedicated email address for parents to contact them but found it difficult to offer a straightforward payment solution. It was also pretty difficult to make sure that all the shout outs are collected in one place and none is lost “on the way” (things can be difficult when you are part of a small team).

He had the ingenious idea to use Oveit for it; created a new event that allowed parents to instantly register the message by using our registration forms. Set up a limited number of tickets (each ticket was a shout out) and money went straight into their account through our direct payment feature. After the registration period was over they simply downloaded the list and printed the shout-outs in the Event Programme. An easy way to solve a complicated situation.

Print screen from Oveit - event management system

 

Rewarding loyal customers through our event management software

Loyalty is something each brand looks for from its customers. Loyal customers are hard to find, so when you do let them know that they are truly appreciated. One of our partners (a Sports Organization) uses our NFC technology for both payments and access control at the VIP lounge. They wanted to do more for the fans that rarely miss from a home game, so they have created a special rewarding program. Depending on the number of consecutive games the fans attend they receive a gift from the organizer. Because the fans use their cards to pay or access designated areas our partner can easily keep track of those that qualify for the loyalty program.

Loyalty programs are very appreciated by customers and 76% consider that personalized offers based on their purchase history are crucial.

Art that speaks to its admirers

Our NFC capabilities can be used to engage attendees within your events. We developed it thinking it would be a great way for attendees and sponsors/exhibitors to connect.

However, I know someone that took this feature one step further. Visiting a museum is always fun, but it’s much funnier when art talks to you. Yes, our NFC features are used in museums, and visitors can find more about a particular piece, an artist or an art movement. Online searching for information is very common among museum-goers. Art that follows up is not something that you see on a daily basis and it’s a great way to create a buzz while helping visitors find more about what they love.

follow up email sent using Oveit's attendee engagement feature

photo/text source: wikipedia.org Example of personalized follow-up email sent using Oveit’s engagement feature

 

 

 

 

 

 























Using the “badge” option as a gift coupon for your services

Discount coupons are a great way to attract new business. According to a study conducted by Firstdata, 11% of coupons are used by new users, meaning they are a great way for new customers to test your products or services. A quality interaction will convince them to become regular users, and adding gift coupons can increase your client base. To estimate what this could mean take a look at how small improvements can increase your business

Oveit can be used to create gift coupons that will be sent directly to the beneficiary through a 100% personalized coupon while all the financial data goes to the person that places the order.

 

Our cashless payment system for day to day activities

Our main focus is on cashless payments, there’s no secret here. We are happy to see that more and more event planners use our software for this feature, increasing their revenue. Our “light” setup was adopted not only by event planners but also by an elementary school that was delighted that can use it in its cafeteria. Parents credit the pupils’ accounts (they use colorful NFC wristbands that scholars love to wear) and using our software they are sure that the kids use the lunch money…for lunch.

colorful NFC wristband

 

 

 

 

 

The same system is used by a large corporation as a way to partially support lunch for its employees. Each month the company adds an amount to each employee account as they use their personalized NFC cards to pay at the cafeteria. If they run out of credit employees can add extra credit.

We are happy to see that more and more employers opt to use our cashless payments solution in order to create a closed-loop ecosystem to manage lunch benefits.

 

NFC-based ecosystems for tourist complex

The idea of ecosystems has always been on our minds, this is why we have developed Oveit into more than a ticketing software. And starting from the event ecosystem we looked further, making it easy to use in more complex environments.  With their help, we managed to develop our software so that it can manage a touristic complex, the NFC room key becoming a powerful tool that is used to:

Attendees can use it to:

-open rooms

-pay at bars, restaurants, gift shops (in the ecosystem)

-access different areas on site (access to different facilities is connected to the room guests have booked, so permissions come as “benefits” added to the account)

-guests that stay at this resort have access to a nearby Contemporary Art Museum and in order to see if they really visit it the entry is added as a “perk” and checked in individually (using the same “room key” which, of course, it’s an NFC card).

 

A new way to manage treasure hunt games

Our NFC capabilities were not once used for implementing treasure hunt games, but a particular occasion stuck to my mind. One of our partners used Oveit for a company retreat and the NFC wristbands to capture data on what activities its employees prefer. For the treasure hunt game, they used our software to create checkpoints and check if each team has covered the whole track. Each time a team reached a milestone the team leader tapped the wristband to the NFC device. Our event management software sent an email containing clues on how to reach the next checkpoint and also marked that they have covered that point of the track. Easy implementation for maximum fun.

 

Hope this article helped you discover new techniques to satisfy your customers. If you have a question for which you haven’t got an answer please let us know. We can’t promise Oveit will be the perfect solution for you but we promise we will look into it.

 

Using social media to promote your events. Cheat Sheet for visual content.

Visual content is very appreciated and the mix between it and social media is irresistible, but not all event planners have the time to deal with the numerous social platforms that are available today. To help you I have created this cheat sheet for the main social media platforms and the photo dimensions that you should use on each of them. Visual content has the ability to instantly share emotions that your attendees felt while partying at your events and the purpose of this article is to help you better use social platforms when promoting your event(s).

As I’ve always said what works for one event planner doesn’t work for all and surely not all platforms will have the same impact when trying to engage your fans. Not all social media platforms will help you as much when promoting your event, or at least not in the same way. But to understand where attendees like to engage you we strongly recommend to use at least the following:

 

Photo dimensions for Facebook

With over 1.3 billion daily active users, Facebook is by far the most popular social media platform. We have talked about it before, in a dedicated article, about how to use it to promote your events. Today, before showing the right dimensions that you should set your FB picture, I just want to give you one more reason you should use it: over 60% of the marketers still consider it the most important social media platform¹.

cheatsheet with photo dimensions for facebook

 

Visual content on LinkedIn

The business-oriented social media platform may not be the best place to engage your attendees, but for sure is the best one to be seen by your future sponsors and partners. With over 550 million users (half of which are monthly active) LinkedIn is the best social platform for Business2Business marketing. Over 90% of B2B marketers use it, 72% of them seeing it as a good source for qualified leads².

visual content on LinkedIn

 

Photo dimensions for Twitter

Twitter is all about the momentum and a great way to share live insights from your event. There are 336 Million Monthly Active Users, 80% of which are affluent millennials³.

photo dimensions for twitter

Tip:

Video content is very powerful on every social platform, but its growth on Twitter is impressive. Remember that the length of a video on Twitter cannot exceed 140 seconds or a 1900 X 1200 px. resolution and that you cannot tag your attendees in Twitter videos.

 

How to use Pinterest to promote your events

Pinterest is great for those that are looking for fresh ideas and it’s the social media platform that really puts infographics to work. Creativity is at its best on Pinterest, so I dare you to show us the Top 10 reasons attendees love your festival or 7 ways to recycle during a festival. But it’s also great if you are looking for inventive ideas for your future events, so don’t neglect it when searching for some inspiration.

upload dimensions for Pinterest

 

Photo dimensions on Instagram

It’s not the first time we write about Instagram either. We have even posted a 2018 update on best features that you can use, so today I just want to focus on photo dimensions.

photo dimensions for Instagram

Tip:

A great way to use Instagram option for multiple uploads is to edit a landscape photo 2160 X 1080 and to cut it into 2 separate 1080X1080 photos. Using the multiple upload option you can upload the 2 photos and Instagram will unite them into your original picture for a fresh experience. This is how the final result will look like:

Let me know how you like to use social media to promote your events.

 

¹source: Wordstream

²source: Omnicoreagency

³source: Twitter

photo dimension on social media infographic

 

Oveit is one of the first to join new Stripe partner program

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Most people today don’t know that only three percent of GDP is online. That’s why we’re excited to join the Stripe Partner Program to increase internet commerce and help companies start, run, and scale their businesses.

By joining the program, our mutual customers will now benefit from the combination of Oveit’s embeddable ticketing and event registration technology with Stripe’s seamless payments platform.

Oveit aims to provide event planners and venue managers with the best tools to help them sell tickets, register visitors and setup cashless payments. Our app provides an easy to use cloud solution that can be embedded in virtually any website, thus allowing a better customer experience and improved conversion rates.

We’ve built our tools around some of the pain points we noticed for event ticketing. Oveit makes it easy to set up and start selling tickets instantly. Payments are transferred directly into the event planners account through our Stripe integration, thus improving cash flow.

Oveit can be easily implemented by just copying and pasting a short code on the event’s website. Integration with Stripe is done by simply clicking a button. We support all of Stripe’s currencies so users all across the world can use Oveit to sell in their local currency.

From concerts to theme parks, from festivals to business conferences, we provide the most relevant tools our users will need to create the experiences they have envisioned, without complicated software interfaces or integrations.

Our vision is to help event planners and venue managers connect with their visitors before and after tickets are purchased. That is why we have set up a streamlined ticketing, registration and payment process but also the tools to interact with visitors after they have arrived. By using Oveit event managers can set up activation campaigns within the venue, lead collections for sponsors and partners as well as cashless payments systems using NFC tags.

We believe that removing barriers to online commerce helps more new businesses get started, levels the playing field, and increases economic output and trade around the world. Together with Stripe, our mission is to bring more commerce online and increase the GDP of the internet.

Read more about the Stripe Partner Program here.