Why integrations are strategic for your event technology

September 10, 2019

Event Tech

At the end of 2018 Crammer has published the Event Tech Landscape for 2019. 444 event tech providers were categorized and included in the 2019 supergraphic. Remarkably, the event tech field has 82% growth in just one year.

Good news, there is plenty of technology choice for event marketers both to serve basic and very specific, niche needs during all steps of their event marketing and event management. The most popular tools in event tech according to the Event Manager Blog research are: online event registration platforms used by 84,5 % of respondents, email marketing tools 61,4%, survey tools 54,1%, event apps 49,5%, event management software  32,9%. You can check the usage of other apps here.

What has changed

In general, the overall evolvement of the event technology landscape is, in many ways, following the same changes that happened in the broader marketing technology landscape.

There is a new category in the event tech landscape 2019 – integration platforms. Integration has been a bottleneck in the daily operations of event organizers, and it has been a bottleneck in acquiring new customers for event technology providers. Thanks to third-party integration platforms, event organizers can now use best-of-breed event technology for their events instead without the need to import Excel files every day.

Integration pain

SaaS platforms are powerful not only because the business problems they solve but also because of the amounts of data they capture and process. However, in many cases, event cloud tools are not able to seamlessly communicate with each other and as a result, they turn into data silos.

This can turn into “Excel Hell” if you, as an event organizer, want to e.g. sync event registrants with your CRM, trigger certain workflows, or send a personalized message to each attendee, based on certain conditions.

According to the Event Manager Blog research, 29.9% from more than 1000 respondents said that “poor integration with other tools” is preventing them from using event technology in 2018 – it is the second reason just after event tech software being “too expensive”. The ability to integrate is one of the key factors that play an important role in deciding what event tech to use – 39,7% of respondents choose to work with a technology provider just because they provide integrations.

Lack of connectivity within EventTech and MarTech is actually an issue for everybody involved – the event technology company, the event organizer and it also affects attendees and exhibitors.

Event Tech companies can lose clients because they do not have integrations with other tools, or they would have to build custom integrations that usually turn out to be too expensive for event organizers.

Event organizers often have to pay for custom development in order to connect their event and marketing stack. In many cases event organizers just end up managing their data manually – export data from one application, clean it, import it in other application, schedule some actions, export a new set of data and so on.

Lack of integration between tools can lead to miscommunication with attendees, delays in data delivery to exhibitors and other issues related to manually managing data in multiple applications.

Event technology integration platform

Which event organizer does not want to automate all her workflows between her online registration platform or event management system, a matchmaking mobile app, and an on-site scanning tool? And why not integrate a CRM, advertising platform and emailing tool as well, and export all data to a business analytics platform? In other words, use a best-of-breed event technology stack.

The solution is an integration platform that allows event organizers and SaaS vendors to connect various Event Tech tools with each other, and also allows connecting Event Tech tools with MarTech platforms – CRM, marketing automation, mailing tools etc.

Thanks to an integration platform, it is now easier than ever to set up an integrated best-of-breed event technology stack. With “Best-of-breed event technology” we mean using the best product of its type and combining several niche as well as “broad” cloud tools that can seamlessly work together. Working with an iPaaS integration platform (Integration Platform as a Service) gives event tech companies more time to focus on developing their core product, instead of building custom integrations.

Still, integration platforms are a fairly new category in Event Tech, and to date, only a few SaaS players offer flexible integration capabilities to the events industry.

An event technology integration platform such as Blendr.io lets event organizers connect their event and marketing cloud tools, and automate workflows across all these tools. Blendr.io also provides Event Tech SaaS companies with solutions to seamlessly integrate their platform with 150+ other marketing, sales and events cloud tools and create comprehensive integrations without coding.

Event Tech integration platform

It’s fair to say that integration platforms are great for everybody involved in the events industry: the Event Tech vendors, the event organizers, and the attendees.

Benefits for event organizers:

  • Obviously, event integration platforms save lots of time. When your event and marketing stack is automated you do not need to spend your precious time on manual data ping-pong.
  • Automated synchronization of your event data avoids data corruption and prevents human error.
  • Integration platforms allow you to create a powerful best-of-breed event technology tailored to your needs, without compromising on your selection of favorite tools.

Benefits for event tech companies:

  • Event Tech platforms can focus on the development of their core platforms, instead of building and maintaining custom integrations all the time, and by doing so avoid building up “technical debt”.
  • Event Tech platforms can win more customers, because of a wide range of integrations readily available via the integration platform.
  • Event Tech platforms can dramatically shorten the delivery time of integrations.

Benefits for attendees and exhibitors:

  • Event attendees and exhibitors benefit from more personalized communication before, during and after the event, thanks to a well-integrated backend.

What else to expect in Event Tech

If we look at how MarTech evolved over the last ten years, we can see that it has shifted from a market dominated by a small number of marketing giants, to a market with thousands of niche innovators today, including vertical specialists and new challengers.

Integration platforms for Event Tech will be a catalyst for many niche SaaS vendors in Event Tech as well. Thanks to out-of-the-box connectors, event organizers will be able to adopt niche applications easily, experiment with new technology, easily feed the right data to the right application and use best-of-breed event technology.

Are you an Event Tech SaaS company? Supercharge your integration capabilities with Blendr.io, an open event technology integration platform. Let’s get in touch!

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