Hello. It's a pleasure to be here with you all. Today, we stand at a pivotal moment - a time to reflect on our journey and to look ahead to an exciting future.
The past few years have been a rollercoaster for the event industry. We've faced challenges, adapted, and emerged stronger. Our industry has not just survived; it has thrived, proving its immense value and return on investment in the world of marketing. Events have become a crucial communication tool, scaling new heights in marketer's playbooks.
But, the industry’s journey isn't without its hurdles. From no-shows in B2B events to a pressing shortage of skilled staff, we've faced them head-on. Our guests' soaring expectations have pushed us to the limits of creativity. Amidst all this, the advent of artificial intelligence and the push for digitalisation and personalisation have begun a transformation unlike any we've seen before.
Sustainability with eventplanner.eco
Looking forward, we're entering a realm where sustainability isn't just a buzzword – it's a necessity. We're not just talking about avoiding plastic or encouraging eco-friendly travel to events. We're talking about comprehensive sustainability impact assessments, about scrutinizing every aspect of the event supply chain.
This brings me to eventplanner.eco, a topic we've touched upon before. As many of you know, this isn't just another initiative. The label is a steadfast commitment – a commitment to real, tangible sustainability in every event we touch. We've been carefully crafting this with a comprehensive set of requirements because doing it right takes time and thoughtful consideration. Now, as we edge closer to its official launch, we’re sharing the list of requirements to obtain the eventplanner.eco label. By doing so, you can start preparing, and we want your input. Your feedback is what will shape this initiative further into something that truly reflects our industry's needs.
I also want to look back and take a moment to extend heartfelt congratulations to this year's winners of the eventplanner.net awards. For the eighth year running, we've celebrated the dedication and excellence of over 60 remarkable winners, all chosen based on the safe and authentic reviews from real customers - our users. Your excellence is what propels this industry forward. To those aspiring to be among the top performers next year, remember, it's the genuine, heartfelt reviews from your clients on our review platform that count. Start gathering them now to make your mark in the next eventplanner.net awards!
In a world where the term 'platform' is often liberally used, I'm proud to say that eventplanner.net stands out as a true platform in every sense of the word.
Let's talk about something that's close to my heart - our event software. We've introduced features that make your job as an event organizer not just easier, but more rewarding. We've added tools that save time, reduce risk, and enhance collaboration. This is about giving you the tools to be the hero of your event.
Over 16,000 events have been created in our event software – a clear testament to its effectiveness and the need for an integrated platform. Additionally, the growing expertise in our software is evident, as numerous event organizers have become certified professionals. Remarkably, it's even been adopted as part of a university course in Belgium, highlighting its significant educational value.
A burning question we often hear is, 'What's on the roadmap for our event software? What new features can we anticipate?' We value transparency in our communication with our community, so today, I'm excited to share some key highlights of our roadmap. While I can't share specific release dates – as we embrace an agile development methodology, constantly re-prioritising to adapt and innovate – I can give you a glimpse into what we're working on. Some of these features might be just around the corner, while others may take a bit longer to perfect. But rest assured, each update is crafted with your needs in mind, striving to enhance your event planning experience continually.
Looking ahead, we've got some exciting features on the horizon for our event software. Together with our users, we're not just keeping pace with the industry; we're setting the standard.
This year's biggest highlight has undoubtedly been the launch of 'Tickets' – our cutting-edge ticketing and event registration software. Already available for free and RSVP events, it includes a scalable ticket scanning app designed for efficiency and ease of use. Currently, we're taking significant strides towards the next phase: introducing paid tickets. In collaboration with our partner, Stripe, we're gearing up to enable seamless payment processing for your events. This development is highly anticipated, both by our team and event planners globally. Looking ahead, 'Tickets' will evolve further to include badge printing and the option for numbered seat sales, enhancing its functionality and versatility.
We'll also be adding an integrated briefing tool, along with advanced management options for artists, sponsors, suppliers, and crew. Further down the line, we're working on building robust programs, timetables, and floorplans. And that's not all - we're also developing features for marketing journeys, detailed evaluations, and enhanced sustainability options, keeping your event planning both innovative and forward-thinking.
API & marketplace
An exciting development on the horizon is the opening of our APIs. This significant move will allow other event software providers to integrate their solutions with the eventplanner.net platform. Imagine this - a first-of-its-kind app store specifically for event planners. While we're diligently working on preparing these APIs, we must acknowledge that launching this marketplace is a complex endeavor, involving both technical and legal intricacies. It might take a bit longer than initially anticipated, but rest assured, we are committed to overcoming these challenges to bring you this groundbreaking marketplace.
To conclude our roadmap, you can look forward to continual enhancements across our entire suite of event planning tools. We're dedicated to refining your project management workflows, making every aspect of event planning smoother and more intuitive. With weekly updates and tweaks, many of which are inspired by your valuable feedback, our software is being loved by more and more event planners.
This year, we also achieved ISO 27001 certification. This is our promise to you: your data is safe with us. In an age where data security is paramount, this certification is not just a badge – it's our commitment to your trust.
One more thing
And one more thing before we wrap up. Our commitment to our community remains strong, and that's why our core event software will continue to be free. Yes, you heard that right – it's our ongoing gift to you, the event planners who make every gathering an impactful experience. But wait, there's more! We're thrilled to announce the upcoming launch of our .PRO version, packed with even more features and offering unlimited use, all while upholding our unwavering promise of data security.
In closing, I invite you to join us on this journey. Whether it's providing feedback on eventplanner.eco, harnessing the power of our event software, or simply being a part of our ever-growing community, your role is crucial.
Thank you for being with us. Here's to a future that's not just bright but transformative. Let's make every event count.