In this episode of Backstage Pass, Ali McMahan, Marketing & Communications Manager, and Dave Pooser, Director of Product Innovation, both from Alford Media, joined host Daniel Litwin, the Voice of B2B, to discuss the recent XLIVE Conference & Expo held in Las Vegas held Nov 17-19, 2019.

McMahan and Pooser both attended the annual Live Events & Entertainment trade show. Tech with a purpose and audience immersion emerged as two themes that loomed large over the three-day conference. McMahan summed the technology part up as a shift from trying to chase the coolest and best technology to outdo the last event to ‘how does that technology enhance the attendee experience?’

“When people pay money to come out to a conference, a convention, an event of any kind,” McMahan added, “They want to go have an experience.”

Pooser pointed out, in the B2B conference and event space, an attendee may be there because of a company mandate. But that doesn’t mean she or he is interested. It is the job of the company planning the event to immerse that attendee in the experience and get them engaged.

Some of the industry trends McMahan noted from XLIVE were Bluetooth and RFID Tracking. McMahan said these methods, which are popular in the B2C space, are gaining a foothold in B2B as well. McMahan also mentioned the uptick of AR in mixed/merged reality as something with growth potential in the corporate market.

Pooser’s most significant takeaway from the conference was the message of not relying on ‘technology itself’ to do the wowing of event attendees, but to use the right technology to create an amazing experience for the attendee.

“Do that,” Pooser said, “and the social media follow-through from attendees will come.”

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