At InfluencerCon 2012, a yearly conference that supports artists, entrepreneurs and innovators, the event planning staff wanted to connect attendees across the globe, as well as, attendees seated near each other. Given that 2,000 individuals were in five cities around the world, the task of building an online community seemed difficult, if not impossible to achieve.

InfluencerCon Founder Philip McKenzie found a solution with Topi, a free/fee app that runs on mobile devices, including iPad rentals. Topi allows for:

  • Real-time broadcasting of changes to the meeting schedule
  • Polling attendees about the event
  • Holding private or public chat rooms with fellow meeting participants and
  • Sending audience questions to speakers and sponsors

In addition, Topi offers geofencing, which has already caught on in the retail environment, but has a lot of potential with events. Let me explain. 

What is Geofencing?

Geofencing is a location-based service, much like GPS, that sends messages to mobile users who enter a defined geographic area. Some companies send promotions to said users when they enter their space.

For a trade show exhibitor this can a great way to get attendees to the booth by letting them know about a special giveaway, product demonstration or even give weary attendees the ability to relax and use a mobile charging station.

What Other Benefits are There to Topi?

Topi uses an algorithm called PeopleRank which gives attendees recommendations of people they should meet,  based on each of their LinkedIn profiles.Topi developers believe the use of PeopleRank will allow participants to break the ice more easily and start making connections because they have things in common, such as they attended the same university.An additional benefit is it can send automatic LinkedIn invitations to attendees within the geofence.

This app supports 66 languages and can allow the recipient of the message to have it translated into their prefered language. This is great for international meetings or a stateside meeting that brings in a lot of international attendees.

This app allows for automatic electronic registration once the attendee reaches the geofence. It will also allow for automatic access of the event materials at that point.

What is the Future of Geofencing Applications?

Whether you like it or not, geofencing apps are here to stay. It can seem a bit like “Big Brother” but the reality is with the prevalence of Big Data tools it is only a matter of time before all apps move in this direction. For events, this means more targeted attendees at your exhibitors’ booths, the ability to keep data to a predefined area for privacy reasons and the ability for even the most introverted attendee to find common connections at large, unwieldy events.

How SmartSource Rentals Can Help

Whether it be trade show technology rentals, PowerPoint presentation equipment, iPads or anything in between, SmartSource Rentals is your total technology supplier! When renting iPads, SmartSource can preconfigure the apps on the devices. You can be assured that the operating system and security software are always up-to-date!

Sources: Topi, PCMA Convene Magazine and Tech Crunch