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News

  • The November/December 2018 Issue of Corbin's TechTalk News Now Available +

      

    The November/December 2018 issue of Corbin's TechTalk Newsletter  is out providing the latest in technology to nearly 9,000 events, tradeshows and hospitality professionals in over 70 countries. This issue is packed with articles, links, videos and ideas on how you can use technology to improve the business process for events and tradeshows. 

    In this issue:

    • NEW ARTICLE: Event Tech
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  • Corbin Inducted into the EIC Hall of Leaders +

    Corbin Ball, together with Henry Givray, Edward Liu, and Deborah Sexton was inducted into the Event Industry Council's Hall of Leaders for 2018, the most prestigious honor in the meetings, conventions, exhibitions and events industry.  The awards celebration occured on October 16, 2018 in Las Vegas during IMEX America. 
         Personal note: I feel tremendously honored and thrilled to
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  • IBTM World announces 2018 Tech Watch Award shortlist +

    29 October 2018

    IBTM World has announced a shortlist of nine finalists for its prestigious IBTM World Tech Watch Award. The winner will be announced on 28 November at IBTM World 2018, which takes place at Fira Barcelona from 27-29 November.

    In addition, this year sees the introduction of the Tech Watch People’s Choice Award’ , which gives the MICE industry

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  • Corbin to Chair IBTM's Technology and Innovation Watch Award for the 15th Year. +

    This award is the longest running and one of the event industry's most significant award recognizing technology innovation - the "Academy Awards" of events technology. I am very pleased to I have been asked again to chair the judging committee. This award is a great opportunity for technology companies to show their new stuff and get a free booth at IBTM
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  • Corbin Ball & Co. Marks Its 21st Anniversary +

    In April of 1997, I left my career as Head of Conference Operations for a high-tech association (SPIE) to form my own speaking, consulting and writing firm focusing exclusively on technology for events, exhibitions and meeting venues. I was the first person to do this full-time -- the 'OG' of event tech! Today, I am happy to say there are many Read More

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    Latest Articles

    • 1 Event Technology Innovation Trends Highlighted with IBTM World’s 2018 Technology Watch
    • 2 6 Tips to Maximize your Tradeshow Booth
    • 3 Virtual Vs. Augmented/Mixed Reality for Events: The Pros and Cons for Each Medium and the Likelihood of Adoption
    • 4 Retrospect Article: The Revolution - The Future of Mobile Technology for Events
    • 5 Tips to Come Up with More Effective Promo Videos for Events
    • 6 As Technology Changes Events, These Five Elements Will Likely Stay the Same
    • 7 Five Trends That Will Revolutionize Trade Show Marketing in 2019
    • 8 Facial Recognition – The Next Step to Streamline Events
    • 9 Three Steps to Cope with Technology Change
    • 10 50 Ideas Using Video to Market and Improve Expos and Events
    • 11 Leveraging Social Influencers to Build Meeting Involvement and Attendance
    • 12 Event Chatbot 101 - Essential Questions Answered
    • 13 7 Event Design Ideas from EventTech Las Vegas
    • 14 Blockchain and Ethereum -- How Can They Be Used for Events?
    • 15 Overcoming SMM Technology Challenges
    • Event Technology Innovation Trends Highlighted with IBTM World’s 2018 Technology Watch

      ©2018 Corbin Ball, Chair of the IBTM Technology Watch Judging Committee Established in 2000, The IBTM World Technology & Innovation Watch is the longest running and regarded by many as the most significant technology award for the meetings industry. The goals are to recognize technology innovation and to highlight significant
      Read More
    • 6 Tips to Maximize your Tradeshow Booth

      ©2018 Guest post from Shem Szot Everyone knows that tradeshows are an excellent chance to spread the word about your business. A physical presence and personal engagement can often leave deeper impressions than online interaction alone. And joining a tradeshow means you don’t have to worry about bringing in the
      Read More
    • Virtual Vs. Augmented/Mixed Reality for Events: The Pros and Cons for Each Medium and the Likelihood of Adoption

      © 2018 Corbin Ball The twisting of reality is becoming common practices in the meeting, tradeshow, event and exhibition world. By using an ever-evolving array of technology such as virtual reality, augmented reality and mixed reality, users can enter worlds created from scratch to entertain, provide demonstrations and eventually sell a
      Read More
    • Retrospect Article: The Revolution - The Future of Mobile Technology for Events

      Editor's note: As part of the 20th anniversary issue of TechTalk, I thought I would include an article I wrote in 1999 -- at the turn of the new millennium (back in the time of 1G phones when even flip phones had not yet been invented). In this article, I predict
      Read More
    • Tips to Come Up with More Effective Promo Videos for Events

      ©2018 Arthur Retman, Movavi As a medium there are many ways to utilize videos for events – but one of the most popular is definitely promo videos. A promo video is basically any video that is used to promote or market the event, and boost its visibility, entice prospects, or directly
      Read More
    • As Technology Changes Events, These Five Elements Will Likely Stay the Same

      We are living in a time of unprecedented technology change. How will these changes affect meetings and tradeshows? Will they remain a central form of education, networking and marketing? Will virtual meetings and other communication technologies replace the need for face-to-face events and exhibitions? Although there will likely be very
      Read More
    • Five Trends That Will Revolutionize Trade Show Marketing in 2019

      ©2018 - Guest Post by  Ryan Gould, Elevation Marketing If you’re a business owner or marketer who’s serious about maximizing ROI, then you need to have a presence at industry trade shows. It’s all in the statistics—when it comes to efficiency, 85% of B2B marketers and salespeople say that trade shows
      Read More
    • Facial Recognition – The Next Step to Streamline Events

      Facial recognition (FR) is rapidly becoming part of our everyday lives. iPhone X users open their phone using FR as their passwords. Airlines and TSA are starting to use FR as a faster and more secure way of check-in and boarding flights. Apple, Facebook, Google and Snapchat have made recent
      Read More
    • Three Steps to Cope with Technology Change

      When laptops computers first appeared in the early 1990s, manufactures called them “freedom machines” with ads showing smiling users inputting at the poolside and the beach. We don’t see these ads anymore. People are aware that technology isn’t increasing our leisure time -- we seem to be working harder than ever!
      Read More
    • 50 Ideas Using Video to Market and Improve Expos and Events

      ©2018 By Corbin Ball, CMP, CSP, DES Video marketing is king! The State of Video Marketing in 2018 report from Wyzowl details numerous survey statistics about the growth and increasing power of using video for marketing products and services. This applies to events. The creative use of video can help
      Read More
    • Leveraging Social Influencers to Build Meeting Involvement and Attendance

      ©2018, Corbin Ball, CMP, CSP, DES Celebrity endorsements have been around since the start of advertising. The athletes on the Wheaties box, the movie star promoting to the TV cameras, the Nike Swoosh on sports star’s clothing all are part of advertising. Psychologists have long realized that buyers are more likely
      Read More
    • Event Chatbot 101 - Essential Questions Answered

      ©2018 Guest post by Mark Kao, COS Rental Chatbots aren’t new. Joseph Weizenbaum created a prototype in 1966 and named it ELIZA. But the idea didn’t catch on until 50 years later. Today, chatbots are the talk of the event planning and marketing town. If you’ve wanted to know more
      Read More
    • 7 Event Design Ideas from EventTech Las Vegas

      Corbin Ball, CMP, CSP, DES As someone who sees a wide array of event designs in the 30-40 events I attend annually, it is refreshing to see a number of innovative event designs in a single conference. This was the case with the recent EventTech conference in Las Vegas produced
      Read More
    • Blockchain and Ethereum -- How Can They Be Used for Events?

      ©2018 Corbin Ball, CMP, CSP, DES, MS What is blockchain? According to Don & Alex Tapscott, authors Blockchain Revolution (2016),“blockchain is an incorruptible digital ledger of economic transactions that can be programmed to record not just financial transactions but virtually everything of value.” Blockchain is a means of managing electronic
      Read More
    • Overcoming SMM Technology Challenges

      ©2018 Robert Walters, Meeting Evolution Recent articles have indicated that many organizations attempting to deploy a Strategic Meetings Management (SMM) technology solution have not experienced the savings and improvement they expected.  In many instances, the reason has nothing to do with the technology selected – but the internal procedures and processes
      Read More

    Event Planners: How Event Tech Might Just Save Your Job

    ©2016 Michael Piddock

    Okay, okay… so that’s a pretty incendiary headline; deliberately so to encourage you to click J – but please hear me out…

    Here’s my logic:

    Events – and by that I include ‘meetings, incentives, conferences and events’ – the full ‘MICE’ suite, represent (on average) the largest item of expenditure in business-to-business marketing budgets. The data backing this up is here, and my own experience of running B2B marketing teams concurs.

    Why’s that? Because face-to-face meetings simply work, particularly in B2B, where Company A might be selling to Company B, but really it’s a human-being in Company A selling to another human being (or beings) in Company B.

    Relationships matter, and relationships are formed, nourished and cemented face-to-face. Direct meetings help, but events of all types remain a great way to get a lot of key people in one place at one time and get the deals done.

    Event budget cuts – what happens next?

    So businesses spend a lot running their own events or attending industry conferences, and supporting this with dinners, hospitality, sponsorship, etc. and the costs rack up, and they’re correctly attributed to the ‘events’ line in the marketing budget.

    So what happens if (or when) we hit a recession, slowdown, or ‘bump in the road’ caused by something like a Brexit, Trump becoming US president or simply another banking downturn? If history is anything to go by, our finance directors and procurement teams will start looking at marketing budgets. Where will they look first? Probably at the top of the list – the big expenditure items – like the 25% of the budget spent on events.

    And as I said – this is what happened in the last downturn. Marketing budgets were slashed more or less across the board, but events took the lion’s share of the cuts in the B2B space, and were slower to recover when the economy got going again.

    But one area of the marketing budget seemed to escape the FD’s wrath – and it’s no surprise that it was that spent on digital marketing.

    How did digital marketing escape?

    While it’s fair to say that digital marketing has grown astronomically since 2008, I think it’s also fair to say that back then most of the people making the budget cuts didn’t really get that. What they did see, however, is that every pound, dollar or euro spent on digital marketing could be measured and its effectiveness tracked. Adwords led to website visits, which led to conversions which led to clients.

    When it came to fighting for budget, our friends in digital marketing had a war-chest of useful data that could be used to prove that what they were doing worked, and cutting back was a false economy.

    Meanwhile, in the events space, ROI wasn’t so clear cut. Back then, the data wasn’t great, and it wasn’t easy to quantify the success of X Conference versus Y Seminar. The measure of the success of particular events might have come from the more influential salespeople, and with the axe swinging their primary focus would have been saving their heads, rather than sticking up for an expensive line item in the marketing budget.

    And so meetings, incentives, conferences and events budgets got cut, and unfortunately, many excellent and hard-working events planners got cut with them.

    Event technology means the world has changed

    Fortunately, now things are VERY different…

    This time round, event planners have access to data. They have efficient marketing, ticketing and registration platforms to acquire attendees and ‘digitise’ them easily. They have social media networks and related tools to build valuable communities on and offline so that events are a key element of a broader marketing strategy, rather than just isolated activities. And event planners have access to a huge amount of technology to engage audiences at events, understand their needs, measure their interests and preferences, and convert them into loyal customers.

    Event technology – including event apps, interactive presentation software, audience response systems and feedback tools – is capturing data. This is the data that, used well, will give event planners the arsenal of information they need when the accountants start running the rule over the marketing budget.

    We’re seeing loads of event planners really starting to understand this and realising just how powerful technology can be – not just to engage audiences with participation or interactive Q&A – but also to simply gather data. Yet there are so many events still being run without a reliable means of measuring their success or impact.

    So back to that headline…

    Event technology might not save you your job. Your events might be smashing it and your job might not be at risk at all. However, event technology does provide you with a great way of really proving the value of what you do. Fight fire with fire – or rather, fight finance people with the sort of data they understand and can’t argue with…

    So… if you’re not already, futureproof your budget by using event tech and data capture....


    Mike Piddock is the founder and CEO of Glisser - an interactive presentation software solution that live-shares slides to audience devices, and integrates audience Q&A and polling to gather data at live events, big and small. Previously Mike ran marketing and events teams for global corporations and fast-growth companies, across the telecoms, IT and financial services industries.

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    What The Audience Is Saying

    • Your session blew me away. I could easily listen to your information all day. This was incredibly informative.
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      Information Experts
    • "Way beyond the best I could have imagined!"
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      Environmental Protection Agency
    • Fantastic seminar! Very exciting advances to come. Your enthusiasm is contagious.
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      Northlands
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