When Pinterest became popular a number of years ago, everyone suddenly became quasi event planners with myriad options directly at their fingertips. Now, PartySlate is the professional industry’s answer to the photo-sharing site. With it, real-life professionals post their ideas and plans for all to see, giving clients and colleagues even more creative ideas.

InterContinental Chicago Magnificent Mile uses the app, saying it’s great for finding ideas you might not even have imagined.

“[PartySlate] is a great tool for planners,” confirms Schmidt. “There are so many websites with photos and imagery, but few that have a lot of actual events to get inspiration ideas for décor and see firsthand how different spaces have been reimagined.”

And though Hyatt Centric The Loop Chicago doesn’t use PartySlate currently, Lewellin says he is hearing more and more buzz about the platform, likening it to a growing number of people wanting out-of-the-box events.

“That’s the nature of the meeting process,” he says. “People don’t want the standard ballroom because it gets old and boring. You have to change it up, and this is where planners now go for inspiration.” 

Over the years, any corporate event planner can admit to spending countless hours researching the perfect venue or vendors for their gatherings. After attending or hosting hundreds of events, New York-based Daphne Hoppenot was no stranger to this research and was frustrated by its repetitive nature. However, it was planning her wedding in 2018 that pushed her to realize the lack of resources in the corporate events market compared to the wedding industry, and set out to see if other meetings and events professionals were struggling with the same problem.  

 

Freelancing has become a new ball game since the start of the coronavirus pandemic, as many companies cannot afford to keep full-time positions, but still need those tasks completed. Although many more professionals have had to join the freelancing community since March, Tracy Judge had the passion for the freelancing community two years ago–long before the pandemic hit–and founded her company Soundings Connect in order to directly connect meetings and events industry freelancers with customers. 

 

Whether dabbling with an augmented reality app, getting up to speed on the complexities of 5G service or employing cocktail-mixing robots, planners are no strangers to emerging technology. As meetings and events become increasingly tech-driven affairs, we’ve checked in with top event production pros for their takes on the latest event tech trends and what’s to come in the year ahead.