Crossing Over into the Technological Divide
While it has been highly touted and written about that the next generation of meeting attendees (Gen Y) are running the show on meeting demands, Futurist Mike Walsh disagrees.
He stated in his presentation before PCMA, it is the smartphone generation that is going to shape our meetings and events and I whole-heartedly agree. For example, my 76-year-old mother and my 13-year old nephew are equally active on Facebook and both have smartphones, while my 52-year-old brother has no social accounts — let alone an email address – and is perfectly happy with his flip phone.
Let’s take a closer look at what these technology-dependent attendees really seek in a meeting, event or trade show.
What Smartphoners Want
- Content that captures and holds their attention
It doesn’t matter if the attendee has an iPad rental or Galaxy Note in front of them, they will pay attention to the presenter if he or she has something captivating to say. The moment the attendee is bored, ignored or isolated is the moment they turn to technology to fill in the time gap. Keep them interested and engaged for short periods of time and you will see an engaged audience.
- Comfortable, chic seating
“People don’t want to be in a room that is set up theater-style anymore,” stated Joe Martin, Partner & Director of Conferences at
Work toward creative setups with overstuffed chairs, whiteboards, and small tables grouped together in configurations that will seat 4-8 individuals comfortably.
- To be outside and still be Wi-Fi connected
It is important to plan various sessions and activities outside. Whether it is sitting through a keynote address, doing a CSR project or taking a hike around the venue grounds, attendees want to be constantly connected to the Wi-Fi.A Wi-Fi network array might be the ticket to help bolster the bandwidth. Be sure to take the time to fully understand the Internet capabilities on your site visit and all the venue has to offer in the great outdoors. Make sure the Internet is fast, secure and robust.
- A Regiception
Rather than having individuals stand in long registration lines to check-into your conference, make things much more relaxed by combining your registration process with the opening reception. As a general rule, receptions are much more welcoming and lend themselves naturally to more networking.While it is important to adequately identify your attendees from potential event pirates, focusing their attention to the self-serve kiosk rentals and asking them to take 2 minutes to check-in during the 2-hour reception, should not be a problem.
- Recharging Lounges
Believe it or not, the number one thing travelers leave at home or in their hotel room is a smartphone charger. That means they need to buy a charger in the airport or schlep back to their hotel room toward the end of the day, possibly cutting short valuable content or networking opportunities.Why not create an environment where the attendee can sit down, relax and network all while their smartphone is connected to the charging kiosk? This is possible by renting charging stations and creating a relaxation lounge where attendees can sit comfortably and talk to others for at least 10 minutes while their mobile device is being brought back to life.
- To go all Green
Rather than having paper, smartphoners want everything on their mobile device. This initiative allows for a totally paperless program – where presentations can be viewed on mobile devices, notes can be taken on tablets and presentations are accessible anytime on the cloud.
SmartSource Rentals is Ready to Help Smartphoners
Choose SmartSource Rentals as your technology equipment provider because we are committed to on-time delivery, guaranteed quality assurance, correctly configured, name-brand equipment and 24/7 technical support. Give us a call today at 800.888.8686 to learn more about ways we can support your technically savvy attendees.