Event Tech Live London 2022 – Digital Day Done

In, and about, the business since 2014 Event Tech Live (ETL) has taken more massive steps over the last 30 months – not least going virtual, going hybrid and, this year, going to Excel. 

Celebrating all these things, ETL 2022 opened online with a stirring 20-minute set from practiced virtualist Detroit’s own DJ Graffiti ahead of the first panel session.

Hosted by marketer/corporate comms guru Paul Richardson, ‘Embrace the new norm for data – ignore it at your peril’ saw entrepreneur/innovator/founder of Meshh, Caroline McGuckian, Greg Morris, who is research director at Neilson Sports UK, and award-winning market researcher and insight manager at SailGP, Jake Prysiak, tackling the enormous subject in 45-minutes. 

A perfect balance of tech nous and brand experience between them, the panel looked at benefits to customers of sharing data in light of a survey showing that 40 per cent have trust at the top of the ‘must have’ list in terms of ticking the box for companies to check their commercial trails. 

Trust was the word of the session – whether it’s practiced brands establishing that relationship with their customers over time, accepting/admitting mistakes as they happen and highlighting subsequent solutions, or younger people having more faith/fewer qualms in terms of leaving their digital mark. The latter suggests, in 10 to 15 years, a population in step with data capture and how to benefit from it.

The session went on to look at GDPR, how it’s not a sexy topic and typically suffers from a negative context, how the pandemic and the ensuing Downing Street podium pitches made everybody more data aware, whether the tech industry has a duty of care; a responsibility to communicate with its own audiences, and much more. 

Digital day one finished with the self-explanatory ‘Calculating event emissions to take sustainable action’, which saw Jenny Morgan, market development manager at Tradewater, in the chair. 

On both sides of the Pond, her panellists Candice Tulsieram, co-founder at the Sustainable Events Forum, Kirsten Love, who’s also at Tradewater, as director of market development, and Martine Kurth, head of delivery and sustainability at Curve, quickly combated the slight sound delay between the continents to dig into: Understanding emissions from events; How data leads to innovation and engagement; Calculate, offset, reduce, repeat; Sustainable event best practice and benefits.

Having highlighted, or underlined, travel/transport as the principal ‘emitter’ for any in-person event, the key takeaway was just how much more efficient virtual shows are – with brute statistics depicted. Four presenters and 200 attendees at a one hour virtual event generate 0.011 metric tons of CO2e (carbon dioxide equivalent) compared to exactly the same participation in-person producing 20.04 metric tons by way of example.

Despite it all, the panel accepted the value of in-person events, with a few caveats – choose a venue with its own proven sustainability policy that is close to public transport, partner with the right vendors and suppliers, start your comms campaign early, encourage visitors to their own water bottles, reusable coffee cups, notepads, pens etc and stop the swag! Find out what you can do. Make a plan. And do it.

Topically, Wednesday 16th November is the first day of Event Tech Live in-person. At ExCeL London for the first time, key sessions include ‘How Slack uses Slack to organise its own events to build community’; ‘How the Science Museum utilised cutting edge LiDAR laser scanning and digital twin technology to elevate its events offering’; ‘The age of Smart Events: Creating better event experiences with data’ and ‘What is Web5 and why you should care?’

See you there.