Another year has gone by, 2018 trends are beginning to emerge. We’re always looking for new activities ahead and how we can make the most out of the year.
Innovation and technology was a clear trend the past year for the events industry, with technological trends merging the realm of the real and the virtual. Mixed reality is quickly becoming a standard at events, with the presence of new devices and technologies becoming increasingly prevalent for running events.
Despite all this, these trends might be taking the backseat this year, with something different in the spotlight. Innovation and technology will definitely still play a major role in the running of events however, what the public seems to desire now is a more personable and experiential touch to their event going experience. Let’s take a look at what 2018 event trends have in store for us.
1. Mental wellbeing will be the focus
The wholeness and wellness craze began in 2015 and is not going anywhere. Many people’s personal lives have a focus on wellness and wholeness – Yoga, Spin classes, Poke bowls, liquid diets, marathons, the list goes on.
These personal choices are also being reflected in the events they attend. Unlike the early 2010s, becoming healthier is no longer what people are looking for. Now, they are interested in fun and exciting novel workouts and health regimes that allow them to achieve their fitness goals.
CR: adelaide now
Besides the obvious fitness-centric events, this group is also looking for activities that will allow them to unplug and rest . Downtime lets people de-stress and process what they have learned during the event. Korea has even started a Space Out Competition, where contestants stare off into space the longest without losing focus or dozing off.
2. Plastic and paper disposables will disappear
The concept of sustainability and social responsibility is hastily beginning to influence the entire economy, especially since the negative effects of our non-sustainability habits have emerged more profoundly. From everyday consumer goods to production and sponsors, their degree of sustainability and their mantra on social responsibility is being watched like a Hawk by the public.
The more common solutions to foster sustainable events is the go paperless with digital substitutes and to reduce the use of disposable plastics with the refreshments served. If these solutions are too drastic, simply using recyclable, recycled or reusable materials is a way to start.
However, social responsibility doesn’t stop here. Being eco-friendly is just the basis of fostering a sustainable event. Other activities that have and will continue to emerge are – supporting local produce/work, integrating charitable activities and encouraging the public to stop using plastics.
3. Events will be more experiential (multi-sensorial events)
Most events engage 3 t0 4 senses (sight, sound, touch and the occasional smell). However as mentioned by Ian Edwards, Chief Executive of Celtic Manor Resort and International Convention Centre Wales 2019,“the most noticeable trend in 2017 was a massive move towards more experientially-led events”.
The public is no longer satisfied with sitting at conferences or eating at markets. They want to be challenged. 2018 will be the year of pushing the boundaries – events that deliver a holistic and immersive experience by engaging all the five senses or compartmentalising each sense so that people are able to experience something outside the norm.
Refreshments will have to be more engaging. As said by Richard Maxted, Director, Mix & Muddle “Organisers will need to be more and more creative with how they form an identity for their event. Whether that’s in entertainment, unique catering options, or new technology.”
The public wants something to engage with – be it a drink or a person. 2018 will definitely be the year where new and exciting sensorial innovations begin the take shape.
4. Venues provide more than just a space
Long gone are the days when venues just provide a space for the event. Four walls is no longer enough for your upcoming event if you want your participants to be engaged at all times.
Venues and event agencies are collaborating at a higher level than ever before, they are integral in creating the overall personalised experience for the participants, as well as reflecting the values and creating statements for the event.
As laid out by Louise Goalen, Head of Venues, Top Banana and Chair, Hotel Booking Agents Association (HBAA) “Events have become very much about the environment that is created and event agencies and venues need to work together in order to achieve this.”
Basically, the venue is a statement and the first impression the event makes for its participants.
There you have it, these are the event trends of 2018. They will push the boundaries of event agencies and force creators to think outside the four walls. Doing something just because it is trendy is never trendy, ensure that everything is done with a purpose and create an impact in such a way that participants will be talking about it in 2088.