IMEX is one of the most significant events for the events industry, not just in the States but globally. And after a long few years, a massive return to in-person events in 2022, and a looming recession, the IMEX America 2022 event has been long awaited.
Despite how gloomy current events might feel, Will and Brandt have some inspiring things to share. In this Event Tech episode, they’ll continue discussing the trends they noticed from the previous IMEX Frankfurt event, cool new logic utilizations, and…booze? Let’s get to it!
We Were Right: Specialization is Here
We covered the IMEX Frankfurt 2022 event back in July. One trend Brandt noticed at that event was that companies were more likely to identify their target audience than in the last decade. This trend of owning a niche and clearly defining it continued at IMEX America.
“We’re seeing people actually admitting their niches,” says Brandt. “Frankfurt was the first time I remember where people started saying, ‘We’re going to market toward the associate market.’ Or, ‘We’re going to market toward medical meetings.’ Now people are coming out loud and proud.”
“I’m no economist, and I’m not talking about every single one of these companies every day, but I’m curious to see if niche applications will change if there’s a downturn in the economy,” says Will. “This whole market was changing because so much money was being put into it. Now, I bet not as much money is being spent.”
Will thinks specialization may dwindle as marketers get hungrier for leads. “If I had to make a prediction, I’d say there’s probably going to be some hungry hippos coming soon, as in, let’s follow up with everybody, put them on a drip campaign, and get some requests for proposals in here.”
Translation and Transcription are (Still) Growing
Translation and transcription applications have continued to trend and grow from IMEX Frankfurt to IMEX America. “Once again, there were more interpretation apps,” says Brandt. “Every other booth was another interpretation app, and they’re all a little different.”
“It’s great to see,” adds Will. “It just shows how global the entire event market has become. It used to be so localized, but now there’s a really exciting opportunity to reach more people.”
“It’s so easy and relatively inexpensive compared to some of the things we spend money on at events. Even just having English transcription services is useful from an accessibility standpoint,” explains Brandt. He adds that one of the men at the event referred to it as ‘language inclusion.’ “I liked that phrase because it shows the potential of the global market.”
Will emphasizes Brandt’s point about inclusivity. “I was in Mexico doing an event. I was talking to an event industry person. We talked about how they learned English early on in their life. They talked about how many business people go further because they know English. It just shows you that there are a lot of language barriers to an inclusive event,” concludes Will.
Logic is Hard but Valuable
Next, in the recap of the IMEX America event, Will wants to hear about any companies that stood out to Brandt. “I know you had a chance to talk to some specific companies, some of whom rebranded, some are new companies, and some are older but have cool stuff going on. Where do you want to start in terms of cool things we need?” asks Will.
Brandt wants to shout out a company that demonstrated complex but exceptional use of conditional logic in its platform. “We can’t name everybody, but Erbium stood out to me. Erbium is a registration platform that you can use to create a basic website and fill out registration forms for your event.”
Brandt continues: “What stood out to me was the insane amount of logic. You can apply logic to the types of tickets available. By that, I mean if they answer a question this way, it opens up a whole different chain of questioning. Let’s say you have a guest ticket, VIP ticket, presenter/speaker ticket, and sponsor ticket. Then, based on what type of ticket someone has, it’ll show different agenda and add-on options.”
“That’s a big technological change. That’s hard to do,” says Will. “I think this is important for everyone to be aware of for two reasons. One, it gives you the option to upsell people. Two, other than getting data passively, registration is one time you have someone so focused that they will give you so much data. Data can help you better understand your attendees. Creating excellent logic questions will help you better understand your attendees so you can better design your events.”
Out with the Clutter, In with the Booze?
Before the tech duo wraps up this episode, Brandt has one last trend to mention. “It felt like people decided not to spend money on tchotchkes; instead, they spent their money on booze. There was way more booze on the show floor this year than in previous years.”
“Frankfurt felt like they had scaled back a little bit,” continues Brandt. “There were fewer happy hours. At IMEX America, there were bars open at noon. In the past, it was the kind of thing to start at four o’clock,” continues Brandt. “Mimosas were flowing in the morning. I don’t know if it means anything, but it’ll be something to pay attention to.”
Let Us Know What We Missed
“I know there was so much stuff to cover, but we don’t have unlimited time to talk,” says Will. “In the future, if you ever want us to cover your technology, don’t hesitate to come and grab us on the show floor. We want to talk about what we find interesting. We love seeing new and shiny brands.”
As Will wraps up this Event Tech episode, he gives a special shout-out to some listeners. “So many of you came to us saying things like, ‘I love your podcast!’ Thank you to everyone who comes and sees us. That helps motivate us to continue pushing forward with this podcast and make the content as awesome as possible for you. Thank you.”
We hope you enjoyed our recap of IMEX America 2022! What was something you saw that was awesome? What did we miss? If you have any questions, we’d love to hear from you. Email us!
This post was composed by Andrew Baldino on behalf of Endless Events.