Brandt Krueger’s Improvement Strategy for Big Session Visual Displays
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December Influencer | Mr. Brandt Krueger
Bizzabo listed Brandt Krueger as #20 of their TOP 60 Most Influential Events Professionals to Follow. His specialty is main stage technology. When he’s not producing fabulous main stage productions he’s speaking about them. He’s been published in many industry magazines and websites, and he teaches classes on event technology, so we felt he was uniquely qualified to share with our readers.
We asked Brandt some of the challenges he’s seeing out on the events circuit these days. Following are some of his thoughts.
Technology Pain Points
There’s a growing exhaustion among Planners with technology. Over the course of the next year Planners are going to be saying, “Enough! Can’t I just hire someone to do this?”
Standards and expectations have risen so high, it’s becoming increasingly difficult for one person to keep up with it all. Realistically, you just can’t.
One planner shared with him recently, “I can learn any of this stuff but I just don’t want to. I have sponsors to deal with. I have my CEO to deal with. I don’t have time for ‘my PowerPoint won’t work.’ Just get me 2-3 AV bids and be on site to manage it.”
That’s good news for Brandt from a business perspective, but it’s evidence of a not so obvious trend in Events.
The days of the Events Generalist are numbered. Niched experts are definitely part of the new wave.
A Practical Approach to New Technologies for 2017
While Brandt enjoys using new technologies, he maintains you need to stay practical. Not every client is an early adopter.
It’s less about the revolutionary and more about the evolutionary.
Look at what we’re doing with Display Technology.
For so many meetings, the format is still sit-down-and-watch and then go to your breakout session. The question becomes how you make those meetings more interesting? And, a lot of it’s done with display technology.”
It’s not the standard–one screen left, one screen right, and something pretty behind the stage. Using ALL of the real estate to brand meetings with graphics and video is critical.” He loves experimenting with different sizes and shapes of screens.
In a recent corporate user conference, they used interesting shaped screens for the presentations, and then vertical screens for the images and the images of the presenters.
It added a nice flavor, and you didn’t have to choose, Am I going to watch the presentation or the person talking? You had both options available to you at all times during the meeting.
I’m always looking for how I can improve the event experience through technology.
I come from a theatre background so to me there is always an element of making magic happen.
There’s something exciting about walking into an empty space and 2 days later you put on this incredible event, and then that night it all tears down and goes away.
I enjoy the punditry, the consulting, and the big trends, but I try to focus on implementation. That’s where the excitement happens.
I’m always asking questions:
What can we do here?
How can we make this happen?
It’s great to talk about Virtual Reality VR, and talk about Augmented Reality AR, but what are the realistic ways we can implement them?
We definitely need the top-level big thinking, and we need to look at trends. But, most of the meetings I work on tend to be financial and medical. These people are some of the absolute slowest when it comes to adopting newer, glitzier technologies–but they are still interested in advancing.
So how does a planner achieve that balance between excitement and practicality?
Advice to Events Planners
Follow your own path. If you’ve held off adopting registration technologies, maybe now is the time to stretch. If you’ve already done so, now is the time to delve into more advanced technologies.
Give yourself permission NOT to be on the cutting edge of everything. Take where you’re at NOW and grow from there.
There’s nothing wrong with learning your tools, and then when you’re ready using them in a situation.
A Lesson He Wishes He Applied Earlier
Get involved. Get out and learn from people. My biggest professional regret is that I didn’t make it a point to meet experts and learn from them.
It’s only been over the last 7-8 years. Prior to that, I had 15 years of just being in my own world. Getting on Twitter helped start things for me. It’s where I connected with amazing and talented professionals.
We talk about new technologies. And, it’s not just about learning from each other. We’re friends. I know planners in Norway, Poland, UK, Germany, all over the US and South America.
People who speak other languages and live in other cultures approach things differently.
Sometimes getting outside of experiences you’re used to can give you a whole new perspective on problems. This kind of interaction can not only expand your vision of how to do Event Planning, but also how to live life.
When you foster relationships, you build trust.
You never know who you’re going to help or who is going to help you. There are people I’ve known for 5 years who are now throwing me business because I’ve known them a long time.
Takeaways from Brandt Kreuger:
- Look for better more exciting ways to implement
- Give everyone a little bit of technology pizzazz
- Think practical
- You don’t need to be a tech maven, begin where you are and implement new things when you are comfortable
- Meet people and build a network
Our thanks to Brandt Krueger for this helpful insights on growing in technology implementation and developing a network with other technology experts.
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