Artificial Intelligence tools are gaining power, flexibility, and scalability in today’s technology-driven world. AI’s continued growth and accessibility have led to its use in a wide range of industries.
AI is increasingly used in events to enhance the attendee experience, streamline event management, and gain insights into attendee behavior. AI can help event planners to make more informed decisions by analyzing data from past events, such as attendance rates, engagement levels, and feedback. This can help event planners identify improvement areas and make changes to future events accordingly.
AI-powered chatbots can also provide attendees with real-time information about the event schedule, venue, and other essential details. In addition, AI can also be used to analyze data from attendees, such as their feedback, preferences, and social media interactions, to optimize future events.
In this events industry expert series, 10times asked Olivia Preston-Lee to define the use of artificial intelligence (AI) in marketing and events. She also shared some tips that event planners can use to enhance customer experiences while using AI at events.
Olivia Preston-Lee is an entrepreneur and freelance events professional. With over 7 years of experience, Olivia has developed a deep understanding of how to plan and execute successful events that drive growth and engagement. Throughout her studies, Olivia has developed a keen interest in the ethical implications of artificial intelligence in marketing and events. Olivia has published articles on the subject in several prominent industry publications.
– How do you define the use of artificial intelligence (AI) in the context of marketing and events?
In simple terms, artificial intelligence is the capability of a machine to mimic the intelligence of human minds and behaviours by gathering data to provide real time outputs and predictions of future behaviours. Applying this capability in the context of marketing and events provides an opportunity for organisations to leverage their operations.
For example, attendee data gathered at events can be utilised by Artificial Intelligence to assist with event marketing strategies. Applying Artificial Intelligence generates stronger predictions and rationalisations through identifying data patterns that employees may overlook. Combining AI’s capabilities with employee creativity increases productivity by allowing AI to complete time-consuming analytical tasks whilst employees exercise their creativity. The data processed by Artificial Intelligence can be used to tailor event marketing material to individuals, producing a more effective event marketing strategy.
The above is just one example of how AI could be used, additionally, promoting the use of AI within event marketing material could place an event organisation as a leader in tech innovation within the events industry.
– What ethical considerations should be taken into account when developing AI-powered marketing and events strategies?
There are many potential ethical issues to consider. For example, a system designed to check that passport photographs met the criteria required resulted in unintentional bias due to underrepresentation in the Artificial Intelligence training data – the system often rejected photographs of individuals of Asian descent, stating that the individual’s eyes were closed. This is an example of the need to understand the process of “cause to causation”:
The cause: Underrepresentation of Asian individuals in the AI training data.
The causation: Discriminatory negative bias towards Asian individuals.
Marketing and event professionals need to be proactive rather than reactive in the development of AI by establishing a ‘red team’ (Red teaming uses a range of critical thinking techniques to aid decision-making, overcome biases and is a valuable problem-solving tool for operational commanders at all levels. New Red Teaming Handbook published – GOV.UK (www.gov.uk).
Organisations should ‘red team’ AI-powered marketing and events strategies before implementation, with a focus on causation – the cause can then be tackled through collaboration with AI programmers before reaching the consumer.
– How do you address concerns around the use of AI in marketing and events, particularly with regard to privacy and data protection?
Communicating about the use of AI is essential to building trust with attendees. Event organisations should talk openly and be free from jargon so that attendees can make informed choices about the status of their consent to AI using their data.
Implementing an approved list of Artificial Intelligence programmers which have been vetted through an internal mitigation process, including checks of the programmers’ compliance with the Data Protection Act 2018 and the Human Rights Act 1998, will demonstrate the event organisation’s understanding of privacy and data protection concerns. Event organisations should work collaboratively to share insights concerning the use of AI within marketing and events, seeking evidence of the robustness of Artificial Intelligence and its programmers to contend with hackers, demonstrating intent to mitigate threats against attendees’ personal data.
Event organisations need to acknowledge that the technology of Artificial Intelligence comes under the umbrella of corporate social responsibility. There is a need to adopt new roles which are intrinsic to the event organisation’s functionality. The roles should cover legal, ethical, and reputational aspects of utilising AI within the events organisation to form a ‘red team’. Incorporating a dedicated ‘red team’ who can dissect the risks that AI poses will enable a better chance of success, whilst reassuring attendees that potential risks will be investigated.
– Would you like to share some tips with events planners on how they can use AI to enhance customer experiences at events?
Events planners can use AI to learn from and enhance customer experiences at events by analysing event related discussions on social media platforms. Artificial Intelligence can provide insights into attendees’ satisfaction levels with an event and with competitor events. Using AI in this way can assist with an event organisation debrief and future strategies by highlighting aspects that attendees most enjoyed as well as their needs and wants that may not have been met.
Wearable event devices paired with the capabilities of Artificial Intelligence, such as smart wristbands, afford the management of many aspects of the event, such as: crowd flow insights and vendor engagement. This real time data reporting can be used to communicate with attendees about aspects of the event such as vendor stock levels or average queue times in different areas of an event, enabling attendees to make informed choices. Using AI in this way will enhance the customer experience; attendee satisfaction levels are greater when additional information is communicated.
For more in the Events Industry Experts series, check out our interview with Patric Weiler, Shameka Jennings, Janice Cardinale, Courtney Stanley, Helen Moon, Danica Tormohlen, Ashley Brown, Jason Allan Scott, Brandt Krueger, Corbin Ball, Will Curran, and Stephan Murtagh today!
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