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Checking In: How Are You Using AI in Your Day-to-Day Job?

It's been about a year and a half since ChatGPT launched, making AI more accessible to the masses. Here, event professionals share how they're using—or not using—the technology in their day-to-day roles.

Love it or hate it, artificial intelligence seems to be here to stay.

Case in point: Brent Turner, executive vice president of strategy and solutions for Opus Agency, recently shared the results of an internal AI-focused survey the brand experience agency conducted among its staffers. The survey found that a whopping 91% of Opus Agency team members have used AI tools in the past month. Beyond that, more than half—55%—use AI tools weekly, and 11% use them daily.

Clearly, the technology is having a major impact on how many event professionals do their jobs—and it goes beyond the robust AI-driven capabilities many tech companies are adopting. Turner shared that many Opus Agency team members use AI in simple ways, like to enhance their productivity. "For example, using an AI co-pilot to turn meeting notes into formal recaps with action items," he shared.

Another popular usage, according to Turner? Program delivery. "Our team members use AI to generate workstream outputs for events and experiences," he explained. "Using AI to inform and drive event materials, like sourcing ideas for theme-related F&B options, analyzing attendee survey data, or using image GenAI for creative assets."

Finally, he's seeing AI being used to drive attendee engagement, immersion, and value from their in-person and online experiences. "For example, using AI for real-time multilingual session translation, better personalizing session recommendation, delivering AI-powered photo booth activations, and having AI summarize sessions," Turner said.

As the technology becomes more widespread, particularly with free, easy-to-understood tools, we were curious how other event professionals are using it—or not using it—in their day-to-day roles. Here's what others we chatted with had to say.

Josh Tierney, senior vice president of strategy, BMF

"We’re experimenting with AI but we have a long way to go to becoming masters. We’ve employed AI for renderings, mock-ups, and even as a 'thought partner' for concepting, creative development, note-taking, and copywriting. We are also exploring AI-centric concepts with a number of clients.

It’s important to remember that AI is a tool—and just like any tool, it’s the user who brings the expertise. What makes a fabricator or a designer great at what they do is their ability to use their tools masterfully—so mastering prompts is what makes a user of AI successful. While we’re still AI novices, our experience so far with AI platforms is that they’re a bit elementary. You need to tell AI exactly what you need and how you want it done, and even then, they may or may not 'get it.'"

Anca Trifan, AI strategist and business consultant, Tree-Fan Events

"In my role, AI tools are integral to nearly every aspect of event planning, marketing, and production management. I utilize SparkAI and HiveGPT AI agents for comprehensive event planning tasks such as agenda management and budget development. AV Production GPT specifically aids in detailed production planning, ensuring that all audiovisual elements are seamlessly integrated. Max.AI is crucial for maintaining engagement on LinkedIn and crafting precise email responses. Bardeen automates repetitive tasks and enhances lead generation, while also streamlining podcast production processes.

For any task that can't be automated with these specialized tools, I turn to ChatGPT for support. Descript AI handles video editing and content creation for blogs, articles, social media posts, captions, and transcriptions, and also assists in scripting for AI avatars via HeyGenNotion AI is my go-to for project management, keeping all aspects of projects organized and on track.

The extensive capabilities of AI to transform day-to-day operations are incredibly impressive, yet it’s surprising how many people are still unaware of these benefits. This lack of awareness is why I'm committed to providing free education about AI through platforms like our LinkedIn Live streams and the 'AI Sparks and Speaks' series. It's crucial to highlight how AI can significantly enhance workflows and productivity, demonstrating practical applications that can be integrated into various business processes.

AI has significantly boosted my productivity. By automating routine tasks and streamlining various processes, I’ve been able to free up around two hours each day. [But] one major limitation is that many AI applications are still in the development phase and struggle with funding and traction. This can affect the stability and effectiveness of these tools, impacting the workflow for end users like myself who rely on these technologies to optimize our daily operations."

Grant Plotkin, founder and CEO, Meet the Edge

"As a design studio, we exclusively use AI for mood board creation—but never client-facing work. [Plus,] we actually were one of the first design studios in NYC to experiment with AI in our event series appropriately titled '.JPEG—Meet the Story Behind the Image.' We asked guests to submit a memory in text form and we brought it back to life using Midjourney. As an icebreaker, we gave guests a lanyard with half of someone's face and they had to 'find their match'; the kicker was all of the faces were AI-generated, but they were so realistic it helped deepen the narrative."

Andrew Roby, corporate event planner, Andrew Roby Events

"A thing I have used for a while is Apple's screen time tracker for the week to aid me in knowing how much time I spend on my phone or in front of a computer. It forces me to ask, 'Am I being productive or am I just scrolling social media?' as the app does show where you spend your time and the percentage. [Another favorite is] Microsoft 365's Asana integration, which always reminds me of the actions I need to do without having to go into Asana. This way I don't forget things when it gets a bit busy.

Something new that we have used over the last year is It joins all of my virtual calls with clients and takes notes so that I can stay focused on the conversation versus pausing throughout to take notes. This leads to us having 30-minute meetings versus an hour, because we can freely jump from one topic to the next—and at the end, Otter does a recap of the discussion I can then email. It's also great for those with a disability who may prefer a transcript of the meeting.  

For content generation, Canva now offers the ability to use AI to help you create content. This can be written form, or aiding in coming up with graphics. The downside to this is that many times, when trying to create specific graphics, such as content with Black people, it doesn't always offer a lot of options—so I have to be really specific and try more variations than I would [normally]."

DeNeitra Burnett, CEO and creative director, Savvy Creative Agency

"I use AI as more of an organizational tool. Especially when it comes to checking grammar in client emails or providing a jump-start to emails. I’ve found I always have to go through and add a human touch, but it’s incredibly helpful in cutting down time so that I can put more of my energy into the creative aspects of the company."

Heather Rouffe, managing partner and director of sales, Atlas Event Rental

"We are not using AI! We have yet to see a true need for AI in our day-to-day operations. While our marketing team has dabbled in testing out content from AI, they ultimately never used any of it as it was, as they called it, 'fluff' content. We feel very strongly about being authentic and sharing true knowledge from our team’s expert insight and experiences and don’t feel, at this time, that AI provides that.

While we are currently implementing a new 24/7 live chat feature for our website, we have steered clear of AI options because, once again, there's an inauthentic vibe and a lack of personal nature. We never want to be so dependent on technology that we lose the personal side of our business. While this may change over time as AI continues to evolve, it’s where we are right now."

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