We often go to great events, listen to inspiring speakers, have good food, look around the stalls and come back home happy. Only, we regret not being able to network enough or connect with the right people.
Most of the time we end up leaving with a feeling that we could have met more people. Another usual problem is running out of visiting cards and it is usually ‘the out of sight out of mind’ way for most of us except in some occasions. A Mumbai based startup wants to help us with the networking blues at events.
Procialize, a product of Indian School of Business’s (ISB) one credit ‘Planning an Entrepreneurial Venture’ course, is a cloud based event networking platform .The platform, incubated at ISB, will help attendees network and interact before, during and after an event, through its portal.
How the platform works
To start with you have to set up an event through the platform. The list and information of attendees based on information collected at registration and previous events is scanned into the system. The platform will then send out personalized invites to the attendees with information pertaining to the event like, other delegates, speakers, topics etc. The invite will also include 3 recommended attendees who might be worth networking with.
You can search for other attendees using name, company, industry and other parameters. Once you decide on an attendee to network with, you can send an’ ecard’ message to set up a meeting. Attendees can also interact with the speakers of the event by posting questions and voicing opinions to them. This way the speakers also can gauge the interest and opinions of the attendees and plan their talk accordingly.
The platform can also be used to conduct surveys and polls, do market research/survey among the attendees The event will also have various active forums for the attendees to carry out discussions on.
Many companies using the platform might be concerned about the data collected by the service, in such instances the cloud nature of the platform will allow the platform to be hosted by the host company, thereby ensuring the security of the data.
The solution works for an event with anywhere between 50 – 5000 attendees, and the pricing is done based on the number of attendees.
The company is currently in talks with companies such as UBM, Reed Manch and other leading exhibition organizers to use the platform.
The platform will be competing with Moozup by Mera Events, GenieConnect of UK and Cvent. Moozup has a mobile app using which event organizers, attendees and delegates can network with each other. On the other hand GenieConnect and Cvent have a premium pricing and only provide the downloadable mobile app custom created for each event and platform.
To tackle the app competition the service has a platform agnostic mobile websites that is optimized for all display sizes. The company says that this ‘one size fits all’ strategy is also extremely cost effective.
Another highlight of the service are ‘Procializers’, who handle live delegate engagement at events. As most event organizers do not have the time or the bandwidth to sit, track and help each attendee. The Procializers sent by the company will move around the crowd and help the attendees use the platform and network. For example, Procializers can advise the organizers about any particular stall not gaining enough traffic, or help an attendees set up meetings, send messages or RSVP to events.
The service recently launched version 2 of their platform. Some highlight of the new version are;
Social Media integration – Now attendees can sign in through LinkedIN.
Crowd analytics – This feature will allow attendees to participate in surveys and polls and give event organizers/sponsors feedback about brand awareness.
Targeted marketing campaigns – This will allow sponsors/organizers to unicast, multicast or broadcast messages to attendees.
With the number of corporate events growing every month, platform like this will really help attendees make the most out of the event. Especially when we run out of visiting cards to give away at event, which is a very common scenario.
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