Spotlight on Meetings and Conventions

The latest social and gaming trends: What event profs need to know

The media has been inundated with news on the incredible success of Pokémon Go as well as the latest features from Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Snapchat in their battle for social media glory. For busy event and meeting professionals, it can be somewhat daunting to weed out the marketing hype from the true value these rollouts actually bring to the table. 

Stories, Live Stories or Moments?

Event photos instagram trends Zoom

With this week’s announcements from Twitter (opening up Moments to everyone) and Instagram (its latest Stories launch) as well as more and more articles on how Snapchat can help event planners engage with attendees, there are more opportunities than ever before to develop compelling narratives for conventions or tradeshows.

With all three platforms (Twitter, Instagram and Snapchat), you can share images, videos and snapshots from your event’s setup, behind-the-scenes details, teasers and highlights. Attendees can share the entire journey throughout the event. In addition, sponsors can more actively build more meaningful brand awareness around the event.

But which one to choose? Here’s the lowdown to help you figure out which one you should opt for your next event.

If you’re looking to add storytelling to your next event, don’t dive in right off the bat. Take the time to open and explore your accounts.

Should you invite Pikachu to your event?


Yes, many of us are probably already hungover from hearing about Pokémon Go and its “crazed” fan base. However, as event professionals, there are some key learning points we can glean from the game’s skyrocketing success. In one word: engagement. Pokémon Go has surpassed Twitter in terms of daily users and has more engagement than Facebook.

It stands to reason that the last thing event planners want is their delegates spending all of their time trying to catch the next Pokémon or battling it out with attendees. One of the main ways organizers have used Pokémon Go for an event is deceptively simple: it can be a fun way for attendees to discover your event’s host city—after hours.

The link between Pokémon Go and your next tradeshow or convention is more on how you can learn from the game’s engagement tactics and leverage them for your next event’s mobile app or website.

One of the main ways organizers have used Pokémon Go for an event is deceptively simple: it can be a fun way for attendees to discover your event’s host city—after hours.

For example, build hype around your website or app way before the event is to take place. The goal is to generate a buzz to increase adoption rates. Encourage registered and potential attendees to use your app with incentives, such virtual prizes or real promotions, and other principles of gamification. Also, reward them for getting their peers onboard. As with Pokémon Go, you want your website or app to be as fun as possible, to get people talking about it and sharing their experiences.

During your event, use the principle of Pokéstops, or specific locations with an influx of Pokémon to catch, to lure attendees to areas of your tradeshow or venue, or to help promote particular aspects of your program, sponsors or vendors. You need not add dancing monsters to do so. Those dancing monsters are something like a cartoon version of a push notification. In your app or on your website, you can use push notifications, pop-ups, etc. to “micro-drive” and “micro-engage” attendees.

Whether you’re looking to create stories on social media or applying gamification techniques to promote your event assets, your overarching objective is to bring people together around common interests and topics. And that’s the secret recipe to attendee engagement.

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