UFI’s Community Manager
Near Field Communications (NFC) has been embraced by the event industry. While it is estimated that the number of Smartphones equipped with NFC will soar to 1.2 billion by 2018, from my perspective exhibitions have been slow to utilize this bit of technology.
If you haven’t taken a serious look at NCF, here is an interesting post on the BizBash.com site which describes seven ways events use NFC that can just as easily apply to exhibitions.
Access Control Rather than have a person holding a scanner or a security guard checking badges, NFC allows organizers to digitally track their visitors as they enter and exit the exhibition hall.
Accreditation When the exhibition has different levels for exhibitors, full registration, VIP or exhibition only, their NFC tag can be preloaded with the appropriate status information.
Cashless Payments Whether it is to pay the registration fee or keep track of credits at hospitality events, visitors can link their credit card information to their NFC device.
Social Media Visitors can use their NFC devices to link to social networks.
Gamification One popular feature in the past was the use of a passport where visitors approached participating stands to receive a stamp or a signature indicating they had indeed made the visit. At the end of the exhibition their completed passport could be used as a ballot for a draw prize. With NFC all this can be done digitally.
Post-Event Rewards Individual exhibitors can offer an incentive such as a discount or other free offer and organizers can offer a discount on future registration to visitors with a NFC device.
Analytics The most important element of NFC is that it gives the organizer access to information about how the visitor behaved. With these analytics in place, organizers are in a stronger position to make recommendations to improve the visitor experience in the future.
The exhibition industry can learn from the events industry. If you have been considering NFC but are hesitant to take it to the next step this short post is filled with some very useful information.