As 2018 begins to wind down, many of us are already thinking about how to make our 2019 events bigger and better than before, looking for new ways to get all kinds of parties off with a bang.
Any event planner worth their salt knows that organisation is everything, as well as creative flair and a general nosiness into what others are doing to break the mould.
We also use trend forecasting to help plan our events up to a year in advance, and as we start looking at all the ways that events are about to change, we’ve compiled a list of the best event trends of 2019.
Facial recognition technology
You might be familiar with this already, as it’s already used today to unlock smartphones. As facial recognition becomes more common, it doesn’t seem that far-fetched that it may be used for security purposes for large events. Facial recognition technology has benefitted from many advances in recent years and could be used to identify those who have been banned from the premises or even VIPs and then alert security or management.
It’s a gin thing Over the last few years, gin has risen the ranks and become the reigning king of spirits. This year, we’ve seen a variety of blends and flavoured concoctions along with colour changing gins. The consumers’ love of gin shows no sign of fading, and both it’s classic and creative forms are set to dominate pop up events and parties over the next year.
All about the veggies! Mainstream vegetarianism is well on its way and getting your five a day has never been so fun. In the UK, roughly 3 million people are living as vegetarians or vegans, with more people making the lifestyle change every day. When planning events, it is expected that there will be a few vegetarians in attendance and caterers are extending their meat-free meals in their menus as a result.
With the number of vegetarians on the rise, you may find yourself at an event with an entirely vegetarian menu soon. With colourful and inventive veggie creations, it’s never been a better time to switch up your meal preferences.
Collaborations between great foodie minds
In the UK, it is thought that between 20 and 30 per cent of the population have a food intolerance or allergy. Many event organisers may choose to employ a dietitian to assist chefs personalise the food experience for attendees, making sure those with dietary needs get to experience the full flavour and creativity of the menu.
While some may opt to eliminate certain foods from their diet such as wheat or sugar, many people do not have a choice in what they are able to eat.
Artificial Intelligence and Chatbots
Popular devices like Amazon’s Alexa and smartphones have built in technologies that are designed to answer queries that a user may have (think Apple’s Siri and Microsoft’s Cortana). They have also been programmed to perform commands such as ordering items, making reservations and reminding you of important events.
Chatbox technology that is used at an event could answer guest’s questions like “Where is the bathroom?”, saving them from locating a member of staff.
“Clever” flooring It is entirely possible that at a large event “clever” flooring may be used as an unobtrusive way of collecting data about the event. Smart mats may help identify the most popular spots in a venue, and this could be beneficial for annual/monthly events as it can identify the best places for advertisements and product placement for optimal viewership.
Extreme themes Themes are often the starting point of planning an event and are sometimes the most difficult to think of. What’s more difficult, is getting a theme right.
Once you have thought of a theme for your event, the decorations, menu, dress code and everything in between will come together for you but getting it right can be tricky. Research is key and can make or break a theme, especially with the upcoming trends for 2019.
Emerging for 2019 are events based around emotional “un-themed” events and panic rooms.
Emotional un-themed events are those that focus on an emotion rather than an actual concept like a superhero theme.
Events that use an emotional un-theme can let their imagination run wild and even dedicate different rooms to different feelings. This theme would be particularly suitable to an event like an art exhibition where you want the attendees to feel different emotions when viewing artwork.
Panic room events have benefitted from a surge in popularity thanks to the rising number of escape rooms. Branded escape experiences can be fun icebreakers, bringing people together to solve a problem and helping to create a natural flow of communication, making them perfect for networking events.
Taking a bite out of creepy crawlies While we are not at the stage of cooking and eating insects whole, you may find that the bread you are buttering may have been made with cricket flour instead of traditional wheat flour, not that you will taste much of a difference.
While the cost of food production rises, manufacturers are always on the lookout for alternative food sources. While they may not look particularly appetising, insects are more readily sourced, have a low-fat content and have three times more protein than the average slice of beef.
Fear not, we don’t mean you’ll be undergoing a bush tucker trial anytime soon, but you may soon see insects become an accepted part of your dinner.
It’s certainly not everyone’s cup of tea, but many predict that insect-based foods will become a popular trend over the next 12 months.
Cosy lighting Lighting can help set a mood at an event and bring people closer together. Bright lights in a large open room can make attendees feel exposed and make them retreat into the corners of a room. Using warm, low lighting or even candlelight in the centre of a room will cast shadows into the corners of the event space. This will naturally draw people into the centre, creating a comfortable intimacy and facilitating socialising, which can otherwise become quite intimidating for many guests.
For more advice on planning the ultimate event for 2019, get in touch with our events team.