We put some questions to Carina Bauer ahead of the next edition of IMEX Europe 2015.
What will a visitor to the show feel after they have left? What emotional experience will they have gone through?
CB: We aim for visitors (or buyers) to leave IMEX on an emotional high. Many people talk about the ‘buzz’ of IMEX and I firmly believe that this is created by the positive emotions that are generated by industry colleagues from across the world coming together at a specific moment in time. There is a great sense of excitement and anticipation about seeing familiar faces, as well as anticipation at the business and learning which is being done on the show floor.
The high is, of course, also created by buyers being able to get back to office having achieved an incredible amount in a short space of time – often telling us that they are ‘a month ahead of schedule’ as a result of attending the show.
Of course, buyers are also likely to be pretty tired, so this year, we’ve made it easier for attendees to stay healthy and relaxed during their busy days in Frankfurt with our new wellbeing initiative – ‘Be Well at IMEX’. The Inspiration Hub, our education platform at the show, has a dedicated Health and Wellbeing track with sessions on mindfulness in events, the importance of good posture and staying healthy while travelling with exercise and supplements as thai kratom powder. Plus, a new Meditation Room will be offering classes such as yoga, relaxation and guided mediation to help attendees re-energise between appointments.
What is new in the world of event technology?
CB: We’re witnessing the rise and rise of Apps. Our 2014 global survey with QuickMobile reported that 63% of all respondents had used a mobile App for at least one of their events in the past two years – and 92% of corporate event marketers had done so. Additionally seven of the 10 finalists in IMEX America’s Tech Start-up competition were Apps, clearly demonstrating that this is fertile ground for fast innovation and added value.
We have an education track dedicated to technology and social media at IMEX in Frankfurt with many sessions focusing on the power of Apps. These include Event App Gamification Best Practices for Meetings and Incentives by Quick Mobile and a session from MPI : Get ‘Appy: Trends, Best Practices and the Future of Event Apps. There are also some eye opening sessions on future technology trends and their impact on events, such as the use of beacons, drones and algorithms.
Further to this, we believe that iBeacon technology – often incorporated within Apps – will become increasingly important in events, as it allows organisers to deliver specific content in specific locations to attendees – really delivering a more personalised experience. We will be testing this technology for the first time at IMEX America this year.
What is new in Education/Knowledge for this edition of IMEX?
CB: There are several engaging new strands to our well established educational programme. The Inspiration Hub is set to host around 170 education sessions, 30 of these will be in German. Following on from the success of the Business Skills track last year, there will be new early morning sessions on Business Networking and Building Confidence. Two new session formats will be geared specifically towards particular groups; Young Professionals – for anyone relatively new to the industry – and Senior Professionals.
Also new this year is Creative Thursday which will host some fun, hands-on sessions from ISES (International Special Events Society) on ‘Co-creating Partnerships’ covering how to form effective partnerships with suppliers, and ‘The Design Cube’ offering advice on event design from concept through to delivery. A ‘Comfort, Stretch, Panic’ workshop helps participants to identify ways in which they can challenge themselves to do things differently to help them grow and develop.
Alongside experts from across the world delivering some insightful education sessions, we’re also set to welcome one of the world’s foremost business leaders, Bill McDermott, CEO of SAP, the world’s largest business software company. He will deliver the keynote speech at the Opening Ceremony; having attended IMEX America 2014 by satellite link. Bill believes passionately in the value and effectiveness of meetings with the help pf an inventory system as a means to drive business growth and profit and is an important industry advocate within the global corporate community. Learn more about our different systems here http://www.eturns.com/solutions-overview/service-truck-inventory-management.