6 Terms to Familiarize with Before 2018

The New Year is just around the corner. And keeping up with the latest trends should definitely be on your resolution list. In an ever-changing industry, corporate planners are expected to always be at the cutting edge—whether its tech, design, F&B or marketing.  Here are some terms to learn before the ball drops.

1. Crowd-shaping

Crowdshaping is the ability to collect real-time data about attendees, and then adjust an event accordingly. For instance, say the crowd isn’t feeling the music. Crowdshaping would relay this information to your smartphone, on which you could change the music. Data is consolidated through social media accounts collected via check-in apps. Other elements such as temperature, volume, lighting, special accommodations and safety precautions could all be optimized.

2. Micro-moments

We have this experience daily. You’re having a conversation or working on a project and another topic comes to mind, often an arbitrary question like what year did Die Hard come out. Our handy-dandy smartphone is accessed for an answer. This situation is a “micro-moment”.

What does this mean for planners? Practically every brand is striving to be an information resource—it’s a main route to success in the digital age. Therefore, those with the most reliable, straight-forward and current information will surpass the others for the most traffic.

The phenomenon is already present. Google found that one in four people now use a smartphone only for search during the day as they seek to meet an immediate need. So if your website isn’t 100 percent mobile- and user-friendly, you’re overdue for a redesign. Plus, the transition from landing on your page to easily accessing services ought to be lightening-speed.

3. Failure as a Service (FaaS)

The past few years have presented a variety of as-a-Service markets. Content, software, infrastructure—the list is long. But how is failure useful? In the fast-paced world of technology failure is inevitable and abundant. Failure-as-a-Service (FaaS) will offer fast methods that rapidly yield a yay or nay (failure). It could revolutionize cloud service performance and allow companies to more intelligently strategize.

4. Social Listening

OK, so your social media accounts are flawless. You upload beautiful images, post daily, exceed your following goal and interact with your audience. That’s all good and well but 2018 is going to take it to the next level.

Precious data is out there waiting be uncovered. Social listening is a sophisticated version of social monitoring. With social listening, you surpass observing and actually analyze and apply the information in the context of a bigger picture.

Here’s an example. Let’s say you own a coffee shop and someone complains that their latte tastes sour one Friday. They’re refunded and you move on. The next week, you hear another complaint on Friday and so on for the next month. With social monitoring you notice a problem with Friday and buy new milk for that day. However, social listening would involve questioning other factors to get to the root. Perhaps it’s time for a colder fridge.

When practicing social listening, look for topics popular amongst your audience, timing trends and pain points, things which people are complaining about frequently. Notice the language, style and types of interactions occurring amongst your audience. All of this should be used to draw several conclusions and apply that information to better cater to your audience.

5. Smart Content

Writing stories targeting your general readership is pretty simple nowadays. Brands are making the move to Smart Content, which is content that’s been personalized for your specific audience. Using cookies, searches, location, interests and other information about a particular user, are personalized in call-to-actions. For instance, if you’re a returning visitor a site might say “welcome back” rather than just “welcome.”

It might seem invasive but it works, very well. In a HubSpot study of more than 93,000 calls to action over a 12-month period, they discovered that the ones which were targeted performed 42 percent better than the generic ones.

6. Service Automation

Human interaction is out, self-service is in. For event processes such as checking in, registering, submitting feedback and selecting a meal preference, attendees would rather click a few buttons than communicate.

Don’t let this get you down, planners, remember that this will also yield faster processes, giving you more time to manage other elements of the event. Not to mention, it’s a seamless way to collect data that can be used in the future. The transition is already widely-seen in the travel and hospitality industries, it only makes sense that events are going to get their hands on these tools.