A Look Back at 2018

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As we complete another trip around the sun, we took some time to look back at the past year and do some thinking about what's to come in 2019. Market Connections helped with this reflection when they released their 2018 Federal Media and Marketing Study with a focus on confidence in news sources. Federal news media and associations were among the most trusted sources of content for federal buyers both in terms of written information and events. Additionally, the study found that participation in events and webinars has remained very steady over the past several years. This finding was echoed in our own survey conducted late last year. Events have proven to be a staple for marketers and attendees alike.

2018 saw us celebrating our own place as a staple in the events community. We celebrated eight years of providing an online, one-stop-shop for the public sector and supporting industry. Users are able to find the events that aid in their professional development, their organization's mission, and their business goals. Continue reading

So, You’ve Got an App for That. Now What?

A mobile app launches in the App Store, but no one downloads it. Does it make an impact? Unlike the philosophical exercise of the "if a tree falls in the forest" question, this similarly worded one has a definite answer -- if no one is using your mobile app, the work and resources you've put into it are wasted.

The ubiquity of mobile devices, the comfort with apps, and the options for no-code development all have made apps a real option for all types and sizes of events. With app adoption, event organizers can reduce paper, create more interactivity with the audience, and gather data on their experience before, during, and after the event. Today, we want to focus on making sure people are using event apps so that these benefits can be realized. Continue reading

We’re Virtually There: Virtual Reality Gets Real for Government

Virtual Reality (VR) and Augmented Reality (AR) technologies are becoming more mainstream in consumer life as well as in the business of government. While the military has long used virtual reality simulations for training, the Pokemon Go! phenomenon brought AR to the masses and opened the door for the use of virtual worlds in many more situations.

First, some quick differentiators-

  • Virtual Reality - A user is completely immersed in a simulated world. Usually achieved by wearing a headset or entering a simulation chamber. Virtual reality experiences tend to be solitary endeavors.
  • Augmented Reality - A user can move around in the real world while interacting with the virtual world via a device, typically a smart phone.

Government organizations are using both AR and VR in a variety of ways to improve workforce productivity as well as citizen service. The American Museum of Natural History is enhancing the experience visitors can have with dinosaur exhibits with the "Dinosaurs Among Us" app that is similar to Pokémon Go. For government teams, virtual reality glasses are being used to replicate physical spaces so that someone at the office can see exactly what someone in the field is seeing. Continue reading

Update Your Event Through Sponsorship

Virtual Reality, Streaming Video, Mobile Apps, Fitness/Health sessions - these are all hot trends at events and can make one event stand out among the rest. But how do you integrate them into an event that is working on a tight budget and even tighter resources. The answer? Sponsorship.

We've written about the changing expectations of sponsors. No longer is a logo on a sign enough incentive for companies to support your show. They want interaction with attendees, they want a deeper connection. Creating a whole new sponsor program to accommodate this need can feel like another item on the to-do list, but if you combine these opportunities with your desire to update your event you end up killing two birds with one stone.[Tweet "Combine the updates to your event with updates to your sponsor opportunities. #GovEventsBlog"] Continue reading

High Tech, Low Budget: Tech-ing Up Your Event

The vast majority of events listed on GovEvents are technology related. However, the events themselves tend to be manual and paper-based. This reliance on the "old-school" way of doing things is often driven by time and money (or lack thereof).

Events as marketing tools are an expense so keeping spending in check is critical to producing a return on the investment. Often, these events are organized by a small staff with other job responsibilities beyond planning the event. Knowing this, it's understandable to default to the "way we've always done it." This "status quo" thinking might keep the expenses low but ROI will continue to fall as less people attend a show they see as stuck in the past.

We've pulled together some ideas on how to affordably add tech to your events to increase your relevance without increasing bottom line spending.[Tweet "Ideas on how to affordably add tech to your events. #GovEventsBlog #EventTech"] Continue reading