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So many event spaces are still living in the past when it comes to media and technology. And when you consider the blistering pace at which the internet moves, the past might be as recent as a couple of years ago. Companies are looking for new and exciting experiences in their event spaces, or at the very least modern amenities that meld seamlessly with their own technical standards.
Modernizing your event space doesn’t have to be a daunting undertaking. At the end of the day crafting a digital-friendly events space follows all the basic rules of venue hosting: put the customer first, and plan, plan, plan. With that attitude in mind, here are some more specific tips that can help you bring your event space into the modern digital workplace.
Get the basics right
If your event space is going to stay on top of its game with regard to the experience it offers its users, there are a couple of basic things you need to get right.
First of all, WiFi is not a bonus, it’s expected. It should go without saying; it’s 2020 now, and the internet is hardly a new thing when it comes to technological developments. And yet, there are still event venues that advertise WiFi as one of their USPs. Marketing your event space as somewhere which has WiFi is like bragging about the fact that you have a color TV: why would any of your customers expect otherwise? In fact, WiFi is so standard that it might be replaced by 5G within a few years. “If you want to be taken seriously as a modern event place, ensure you have a fast, reliable WiFi connection. WiFi is like hot water: you only notice it when it’s not working” says Kes Grokis, team manager at Rated Writing and Big Assignments.
Much like WiFi, using social media has become standard practice for event venues. If your event venue is not using social media to advertise you are giving up on an opportunity to reach thousands of potential customers for free. Whether it’s glossy pictures on Instagram, testimonial blogs on LinkedIn, or a guided tour on Snapchat, get to know the different social media platforms and figure out which is the best match for the tone and market of your venue.
Innovate Before Renovation
Once you have a connected digital space, giving your venue that little extra edge doesn’t need to break the bank. Innovating in event hiring isn’t a matter of tearing up the building plan and starting from scratch. If anything, with the pace of technological development, your new plan will likely look outdated in a few years’ time. “Instead, take advantage of new trends that can enhance the user experience of your venue without changing the fundamentals of your space. Technology does not equal innovation. You can’t buy innovation, you have to live it” explains Dennis Uggman, a business writer at Writemyaustralia and Academadvisor.
One great way is by embracing what Forbes’ Dan Newman calls The Age of Experience. Focussing on giving users a unique experience centered on them can be as simple as changing your vocabulary. Abandon the corporate jargon that has haunted HR workshops for so long, instead speak from the heart, and try to connect to your users’ feelings. Don’t be afraid to be open, honest, and personal. In an age increasingly dominated by AI and bots, knowing there’s a human behind your brand will be compelling to any potential visitor.
Think Outside The Cubicle
If you’re hungry for a more significant commitment to digital event space, it might be time to broaden your concept of what event venues are for. As workplaces become more virtual, companies become smaller and rents get higher, the landscape of event hiring is increasingly inundated with requests that don’t fit the traditional mold.
As a forward-thinking event venue, seeking to satisfy these requests will mark you out as an attractive and innovative space for a variety of companies. Consider options like co-working spaces like WeWork, for freelancers or smaller companies that can’t afford full office rent, or investing in live-streaming and digital conferencing technology so that global virtual companies can use your space to get together. Get stuck in a traditional mindset and your event venue will be stuck in the past.