As a meeting planner, one of your main objectives is to create an unforgettable experience for people. Whether the meeting is a corporate convention or an incentive travel reward, you want people to leave the event feeling happy and appreciated, and that their time (and money) was well spent.However, you also know that any meeting, whether large or small, often has confusion and rough patches to overcome. Long registration lines, large conference centers that are poorly mapped, and group excursions that get cancelled due to weather or other unforeseen circumstances are just a few of the hassles any meeting planner has to deal with.

Fortunately, as tomorrow’s technology unfolds before us, namely in the form of Smart Pads and Smart Phones, the future of meeting planning is getting easier and more profitable.

Never before have people been able to get information and data in their hand customized for their unique needs right as it’s happening. So when something occurs, information updates, or a need arises, that information is immediately visible to anyone authorized to see it. To have that visibility – and have it with you 24/7 in the form of an app – is both powerful and amazing.

Here are some examples of how this new app technology can work for meeting planners:

  • Mapping of hotels and convention centers. Just as Google mapped our streets, in the very near future hotels and convention centers will be mapped the same way. As such, meeting attendees will be able to download a free app that helps them navigate inside buildings so they can find their meeting rooms, their hotel rooms, their dining halls, etc.
  • Location awareness for attendees. Anyone who has been to a large conference or hotel knows how difficult it can be meeting up with associates, prospects, or key contacts. While geo-social networking tools such as Loopt and Foursquare are available to the mainstream market and are somewhat helpful at meetings, meeting planners in the near future will have access to customized apps that enable registered meeting attendees to easily find each other within the meeting facility
  • Management of agendas. Instead of standing in registration lines, attendees can register for the conference and for various events with an app. Immediately upon registration, all the conference materials can be downloaded to the person’s Smart Pad or Smart Phone. Additionally, each day the app can show people what’s on their personal agenda for the day, the times and locations of the various meetings and events they’re registered for, how to get to the meeting spots, the speaker’s presentation slides, and any needed handouts or supplemental materials.

The Best Meeting Ever

Apps like these have many benefits: they eliminate some of the meeting planner’s work, they make the meeting run smoother, they eliminate common stressors for the attendees, and ultimately, they make the meeting planner look good. Customized apps like these for meeting planners are currently in development. And when they hit the market they’ll empower meeting planners, attendees, hotel and conference center staff… and anyone else involved with meeting planning with real time tools and data that will streamline processes and ultimately increase both productivity and profits.