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The future of festival management.

Posts by Thomas

Festivals, Industry Insights, Product, Technology

Appmiral and Beatswitch: building the future of festival tech together

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The digital platforms of Appmiral and BeatSwitch – two leading products in the world of music festivals – will work better together through a new partnership. While Appmiral makes sure that festival visitors are offered the best possible experience, Our festival management software works behind the scenes to help organise these musical behemoths.

Through this partnership, we’re aiming to integrate both platforms, step by step. This will allow organisers to handle the complete organisation of their festival(s) or event(s) extremely efficiently. And that, of course, benefits both promoters and festival visitors!

More on Appmiral

At Appmiral, they’ve spent the past seven years creating festival apps that bring the magic of the festival grounds to visitors’ mobile phones – the perfect digital sidekick to the festival experience. Each year, they have the privilege to work with a brilliant line-up of festivals, sponsors and partners to reach that goal. Their apps are the best-rated festival apps in the world, both on Android and iOS. They help about 20 festivals worldwide offer their visitors a kick-ass digital experience.

Watch their video here.

www.appmiral.com

More on BeatSwitch

BeatSwitch is market leader in planning software for festivals. Starting in 2013, they’ve supported more than 800 events each year for clients such as EDC, DGTL, and Melt! Lollapalooza. We offer different planning modules that allow for a streamlined experience in organisation and data communication. Our flexibility makes us the preferred platform for festival promoters, artists, and accreditation managers, helping them organise festivals smarter, faster, together.

Watch the Alda Events testimonial here.

www.beatswitch.com

Our partnership

In the first version of our integration, we’ll align the artist management and the mobile app’s scheduling functionalities. We’re aiming for seamless synchronisation, eliminating the need for double data input on the festival organiser’s end. We’ll also allow our clients to communicate changes in their planning or operations directly to their festival visitors, through push notifications and interactive content.

In the coming year, we’ll continue joining forces. The teams behind BeatSwitch and Appmiral will put their heads together to reinforce and promote each other’s product offerings. And in the coming months, we’ll be starting some new initiatives together. From sales and marketing strategies to product development and alignment (API, dataflow, analytics,… ) – we have a lot of improvements in mind for 2017’s festival season!

Industry Insights

Four Ways Messenger Bots Will Deliver Value for Your Festival

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On the eve of Facebook’s F8 conference, many awaited the Bot Store announcement for the Messenger app. This feature would open the messaging platform to third party developers, much like Apple’s App Store did for its phones in 2008 (and later for all its other products). The App Store generated over $20 billion for brands and the developer community last year, from which Apple takes a 30% cut.

One of the main reasons why bots are piquing people’s interests right now, is because cognitive computing and machine learning are developing faster than many predicted.

As the world around us continues to become more controllable by our smartphones, Artificial Intelligence powered bots act as personal assistants, concierges, analysts, etc. Since they understand natural language, these bots can easily be accessed via messaging or speech interfaces, paving the way to a future without apps. You can already see the conversational interaction happening: You tell your friends you’re going to “cab it” to the festival on Facebook Messenger, and instantly you’re offered an Uber option.

Tell your friend you’re going to “cab it” to the festival on Facebook Messenger, and  instantly you’re offered an Uber option.

The Bot Store will bring a new wave of opportunities for festivals and brands. Many are saying it will be as big–if not bigger–as the App Store; the phrase “Bots are the new Apps” is already trending. Overall, there are many reasons to believe that bots will have a significant impact:

 

  • Many already have Facebook Messenger, which will be the only download needed to access all of the (Messenger) bot world.
  • Messaging is a familiar interface to most using the internet today, and messaging apps are still on the rise.
  • Messenger Bots won’t be restricted to only messaging, but can embed graphical user interfaces whenever needed, expanding possibilities.
  • Many bots will run on cognitive computing architectures, learning about their users and domains, and improve as more people use them.
  • Facebook already has a massive and well-used infrastructure in place to promote the Bot Store and individual bots.

 

What could and should we do with all these bots? To support a festival, bots–-just like apps– need to first and foremost be beneficial to the users. Essentially, bots will bring value in the same way the internet and apps have so far—with even more emphasis on personalization, context and speed. There are four sources of value for bots:

 

Information

Hit up a festival website, Facebook page, or send an email to the festival organization—in many cases you won’t get a direct response or the information you were looking for. Instead, bots can ask you more detailed questions to define exactly what you need.

How can your festival brand bring users the knowledge they need, when they need it —  when don’t know they need it?

Optimisation

Bots will save time, and you can use them to request multiple services at once. For example: ask Uber to arrange a ride to the festival site, get reminders when your favorite band is about to play, find your friends that are somewhere “left of the stage,” top up your RFID chip to buy more beers — all within the same message.

How can your festival brand–on its own or with other brands–work to enhance the attendee experience in order to reduce time, effort and money?

Personalization

A lot of the festivals apps are about centralizing information and pushing brand messages when you enter the beacon’s radius. With bots, you will see more personalized messaging that has more relevant context to you and your experience.

Bots will enable doing new things that previously unimaginable. Spoken language interfaces could walk you through the festival site to other stages, or recommend food stands based on your Facebook likes. Instead of one general message to all attendees, personalized messages from festival promoter sponsors can be sent to attendees; i Hyper profiling and extra context will get more sponsorship and generate instant ROI for those brands.

How can you get insight into your customers’ personalities, and build tailored experiences around them?

Safety

Ultimately, messaging is about connections. Bots can connect the people and resources you need without complications. Take First Aid at a festival as an example. If you needed medical assistance, you could just message a festival bot that could automatically locate you and send a medical team your way. In another case, the bot can let you know when you need some water based on your spending behavior at the bar or if it’s time to touch up on some sunscreen.

How can your festival communicate about preventive security measures, and create a safer festival environment?

 

Group 2

 

If you liked this post, feel free to share. If you are interested in setting up your bot strategy, drop us a line at thomas@beatswitch.com

 

Events, Festivals, Industry Insights, Product, Technology

Why All Festivals Need a Messenger Bot

BeatSwitch - Festival Management Software

 

We are always looking for new technology and opportunities to innovate the festival industry, but last week, an idea set off at the BeatSwitch office sparked by one of our clients. The client told us that he was struggling to manage his Facebook event page and obtain actionable insights from the data. Another issue was once the Messenger extension was added, messages overflowed, making it hard to keep up.

(more…)

Artist management

6 Steps to Making Your Festival Artist Friendly

Although dj’s love the part where they get paid, there are many other things that artists love or hate about playing festivals.

While management and agents focus on the paycheque and exposure to new audiences, there are a number of other factors that affect the sentiment towards your festival for the dj’s and crew that fly and drive long hours to get there.

Happy dj’s say great things about your festival and unhappy dj’s do the opposite. Since they hang out and share their experiences with others, you want the stories they share about your festival to be positive.

Here are some things festivals should consider before and during their event to ensure your artists have a smooth experience that will reflect positively on your event:

1) Provide a detailed itinerary

Make sure you send ALL OF THE INFORMATION that your artists and their team need before they get to the festival site. Include Maps, their schedule, a map of the festival site with indicators showing them where they are staying, eating, parking, contact details, the venue or stage entrance and any other details you have for them. Having this information in advance will help them prepare for your festival.

2) Deliver what you promised

Running around nagging production staff for your drinks, fruit tray and anything else that was verbally promised and included on the contract while you and your band should be back stage getting ready to perform can sour the experience. This is easy stuff to accommodate with a bit of planning. As an artist you want to focus on making your show the best possible experience for festival goers.

It also helps to have a finalized copy of the signed contract and rider on hand. This is important because sometimes agents and managers can forget to share the updated documentation with the artist. Having this document on hand can eliminate any confusion or disagreements on what was officially agreed upon.

3) Water, water, everywhere!

Whether or not this is something that was included on the rider, it’s water. Dj’s need it to survive. It is a small cost to make sure that there is a source of water for performers. There is nothing worse than being on stage kicking out a 60 minute high energy set while being completely parched. Keep your artists hydrated and they’ll be in a better position to give your audience the performance you’re paying them for.

4) Be nice

This one should be pretty easy, however, summer heat, lack of sleep, long days and stressful agendas can sometimes bring the out the worst in people. All things considered, being cranky can make the experience fairly uncomfortable for your performers. I can not count how many times I have been snapped at by festival staff for asking for some water, or asking a monitor guy to turn something up. This is something worth making your staff and volunteers aware of. My advice is to make it policy to treat artists with respect and clarify that being disrespectful to artists is not tolerated.

5) Ensure artists have their personal space respected

Every artist, no matter their level of recognition, needs time to prepare before a performance if they’re going to put on the best show possible. After their set, they also may need time to decompress.

6) Personally thank the artists that play your festival

It is a great thing when the festival director or senior staff make a point to meet the talent and thank them for their performance. IF you had the time to check out a tune, let them know. If not maybe someone else on your staff mentioned something to you about them or you saw a tweet from one of your patrons. Let them know. If you are too busy to make the rounds and thank your performers than you may want to consider more delegation and organization. In the extreme case you don’t get a chance to do this because your event is just that big or something unforeseen comes up, then set time aside after things calm down to write the artist a personal email thanking them for their performance and apologizing for not being able to meet them in person.

Finally, remember that artists play music for reasons other than just making money. Give them a great experience. Let them feel appreciated. The word will get around the artist community and everyone will want to play at and recommend your festival.

Artist management

4 festival management and planning trends for 2014

2014 will be the year that technology startups will find their way to innovate the festival industry.

This change comes from a new generation of festival organizers who identified a need for the right digital tools to run their festivals.

1. Decentralization of planning teams pushes collaboration

The trend continues for festivals to become global. The increase of telecommuting as well as geographically dispersed planning teams has increased the demand for tools that connect teams as well as provide centralized repositories of information. Collaboration tools will become even more important as festival organizers strive to keep everyone on task.

2. The demand for application integration

Whether tools sync or work with other popular software applications, there is a clear desire for software/app integration and data syncing.
Because organizers will select best of breed and future-proof applications to pull or share existing data from legacy and historically grown applications.

3. Less tools more efficiency

Flip side of the coin is that festival organizers want to cut down on the quantity of tools and resources they are using to increase quality and streamline their processes. NO MORE separate tools for dozens of discrete tasks (to-do’s, budgeting, communications, booking management, artist management, etc.), BUT fewer tools that do more.
A solid consolidation awaits but innovation will be slow.

4. Realtime communication and mobile are undeniable

Smart phones and tablets are becoming increasingly popular by festival organizers, and these technologies will be seen and used at more events than ever.

Festival managers are in deep need for an all-in-one solution to manage, monitor and keep their activity planning dynamic and intelligent with real-time notifications. Solutions that can anticipate on changes in the planning and suggest an action or task to the festival managers are key in this ever growing digitization of artist and festival management.

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