At last March’s, South by Southwest conference, interactive event technology was all the rage. From virtual reality to 3D printing, marketers were showing their offerings to the 150,000+ attendees. While BizBash highlighted many of the innovative offerings, I am going to focus on five of them and include trade show technology rentals that you can use today to help your products stand out from all the rest. 


Spotify, an app that allows you to stream millions of songs, offered touch screen social tables where visitors could create personalized mosaics using album covers. Attendees could post on Instagram their findings and thoughts using hashtag #SPOTIFYHOUSE. 

Touch screen monitors are available now to interface and show social channels and apps to attendees whether they are at a trade show booth or attending a meeting. By integrating video, photos and music the meeting participant has full use of most of their senses; thus making the interaction more memorable to them.


3M encouraged attendees to use the Twitter hashtag #3MIdeaExchange to share ideas for a better world; in which they gave away a total of $10K – $500 at a time. Here is a brief video explaining how the giveaway and idea exchange occurred:

By renting iPads for your attendees, you can make certain they can participate in hashtag contests at your meeting. Renting a video wall is another way attendees can gather around and view the Twitter stream on a big screen, view Instagram photos and/or see the live streaming in the general session.


Oreo vending machines used Twitter trends to create Oreo cookies with a three-dimensional printing system. The 3D-printed Oreos—which were edible—were assembled within two minutes by the machines. The flavors offered were dependant on which ones were trending on #eatthetweet. 

This on-demand cookie system can be used in meetings and events as well. By creating and monitoring an event hashtag, you can change up your conference on a real-time basis based on trending data. The ability to change so quickly was impossible before; but now with social media channels such as Twitter – it is as easy as a tweet. 


This on-demand, video streaming site promoted their new series, Deadbeat at SXSW through holographic ghosts and invited attendees to text questions about the show to an interactive Ouija board where a staffer behind the board would spell out the answers. 

While holographic technology has a long way to go, the use of texting and 4K Ultra HD or HD Displays is not. Creating ways for attendees to engage with the content on the screen is key to any learning and/or branding process.


This promotion was built using Oculus Rift, a virtual-reality headset,that provides a 360-degree field of vision which allows wearers to view, and react to, their surroundings in a realistic manner.

While I don’t imagine virtual reality will be coming to an event anytime soon, I do think gamification is alive and well. Consider looking into this method of garnering your attendee’s attention – especially if you are renting iPads or allowing BYOD.

Call SmartSource Rentals today at 800.888.8686. They have the experience and knowledge to manage your total technology needs!