AI hacks for unforgettable customer experiences using data at large events

Published on January 24, 2024

Imagine a music festival where you never wait in line – not even to get into the festival itself or for vendors and food stands inside. Or imagine a tech conference where your schedule adapts to your interests, speakers adjust their talks based on audience sentiment, and networking opportunities arise effortlessly.

This is the potential reality of AI-powered large-scale events  and quality customer experience data. In today's experience-driven economy, simply managing crowds is no longer enough. To truly stand out, brands must enhance the customer experience with intelligent data that helps create personalized journeys and experiences that leave attendees raving and brand loyalty soaring. 

The secret weapon: AI and quality customer experience data

The magic behind these unforgettable experiences lies in the potent combination of event data, customer experience data, and artificial intelligence. By harnessing the vast amount of information you gather – from registration preferences to social media sentiment – artificial intelligence can unlock a treasure trove of insights, revealing hidden patterns and predicting attendee needs before they arise.

To achieve this, data quality is key. Firstly you need to collect data around which events to focus on. Access to tools like predictive demand intelligence company PredictHQ can ensure you focus on the highest potential impact based on predicted spend and attendance for upcoming events. Once you decide which events to focus on, you need to ensure data accuracy across ticketing systems and your CRM to create a holistic view of each attendee, integrate data from different sources to personalize experiences and analyze data streams in real-time  to inform immediate decisions and adjustments to optimize the customer experience.

Think of it as transforming a chaotic crowd into a symphony of individual desires. AI acts as the conductor, analyzing data like a musical score and orchestrating a unique, customized experience for each attendee. 

5 AI hacks to enhance customer experience at your next large event

After collecting quality data on your event and its attendees, you can now  power a wide variety of solutions that enhance the attendees' experience starting from before they even arrive. These AI hacks aren't just theoretical concepts – they're already transforming how brands create  unforgettable customer experiences. 

1. Easier entry to events powered by AI facial recognition 

Artificial Intelligence has been widely adopted across industries over the last 12 months, even with events. For example, the sports industry is growing rapidly, with new developments emerging quickly. Certain NFL stadiums now offer AI-powered facial recognition, where fans simply use their face as their ticket, bypassing long lines and the need to scan tickets. By opting in, attendees walk right by the crowds of fans waiting in line and fumbling with phones – which in some cases, takes so long that fans miss part of the game. 

This technology opens up a realm of possibilities for personalized fan experiences. Imagine arriving at the stadium, and the surrounding screens display personalized messages as you enter, welcoming you by name and offering exclusive promotions tailored to your preferences. Integrating intelligent event data helps users explain the why behind consumer behavior and add additional context to visitor profiles.

2. AI-powered ticketing and dynamic resource allocation 

Automated ticketing processes help stadiums allocate resources more efficiently. Large concerts and multi-day music festivals use virtual tickets and contactless payment through RFID wristbands which collect data and track attendees’ movements. AI models analyze patterns in this data to predict peak times, allowing organizers to optimize staffing, security, and concession stands, improving service and crowd safety. This insight also gives event organizers workforce optimization and the ability to dynamically adjust staffing so enough staff is ready at all times to move the crowd along and avoid bottlenecks. 

Austin City Limits, one of the largest and most renowned music festivals in the U.S., uses wristbands as a seamless and contactless payment solution for all festival-related transactions from entry to payments for food, drinks, and merchandise, all at the tap of your wrist. You can also load emergency contact information onto the wristband for additional safety measures.

3. Real-time feedback from event attendees

AI is also helping organizers of large events such as conferences and expos gather real-time and continuous feedback from attendees through surveys, social media, and post-event follow-ups to refine strategies and improve for future events. AI chatbots specifically tailored for your event make it possible to gain insights about popular sessions by reinforcing the two-way dialogue between attendees and presenters – and fostering engagement via features such as live contests.

A leading event tech company reported a whopping 58% engagement rate with a chatbot during the event, which represents over 1,300 messages sent to the bot. This communication helped organizers identify customer service questions and reduced direct customer calls by 20%.

4. AI-generated memories for a lasting brand impression 

Marketing activations powered by new tech such as augmented reality and generative AI make live events that much more memorable. Cross-promotions between brands help draw attention to photo and video booths powered by AI. By using predictive data and AI, these companies are seeing festival-goers become brand ambassadors as they relive their memories.

Coke’s AI music studio, an immersive experience at major events like Lollapalooza, allows festival-goers to create an original song, album cover, and music video. Not only does the music studio delight fans, but it also encourages authentic user-generated content which can then be shared on social media networks for added brand exposure. 

BMW partnered with the Tomorrowland music festival to offer yet another musical experience at the event, allowing fans to create their unique dance video for social media. Experiences like these are a gift that keeps on giving, as your brand is amplified each time the memory is shared, reinforcing a positive correlation between the event and your brand. 

5. Data-driven concession stands and mobile ordering

Mobile ordering systems at large venues combine AI and data to allow businesses to dynamically adjust concession services to best align with fans’ needs during major sports games and concerts. With AI-powered concessions, fans can enjoy the luxury of self-service and grab-and-go checkout locations strategically positioned throughout the stadium. These designated spots allow fans to swiftly collect their orders, eliminating any potential bottlenecks or delays for quick, hassle-free service. 

No more waiting in long lines or missing vital moments of the game. With just a few taps on their smartphones or at these kiosks, fans can swiftly place their orders, ensuring they never miss a beat. For example, the San Francisco Giants use a point of sale (POS) technology to analyze restaurant metrics and real-time data to improve inventory management, best serve guests, and reduce food waste.

The power of personalized connections

The brands from the examples above demonstrate a deep understanding of the power of personalization and how it's not solely about the event itself – it’s about creating a complete experience for event attendees. They’ve leveraged AI and quality data not just to enhance the customer experience, but also to prioritize the safety and well-being of attendees of large events.

The future of large-scale events isn't about managing crowds – it's about cultivating connections. By harnessing the power of AI, businesses can craft personalized experiences that resonate with each attendee. With these tools, you can ensure the next large event your business participates in or around is a well-thought-out, data-driven, and AI-powered experience that ultimately will lead to a stronger customer experience. 

Make your next event a legendary experience with data from PredictHQ

By harnessing the power of AI and quality data, you can transform high-volume events into personalized, efficient, and memorable experiences for your attendees, fostering loyalty and driving long-term success. Remember, the success of AI-powered CX optimization hinges on quality data. Invest in robust data collection and management systems, like PredictHQ, ensuring accuracy and accessibility for accurate analysis.