Chicago Conventions Now Playing SCVNGR
SCVNGR, the GPS-based social networking and gaming app that’s getting so much attention these days, is now mainstream in Chicago’s convention scene. The Chicago Convention & Tourism Bureau (CCTB) announced recently that it’s now offering the SCVNGR social gaming platform to show organizers to help them add value and promote attendee engagement.
Attendees and exhibitors can experience Chicago through three themed treks showcasing itineraries and challenges for Navy Pier, Presidential Chicago and Foodie Frenzie, where players discover some of the city’s classic dining and dessert options, including a picnic in the park when weather permits. (To learn more, visit www.choosechicago.com/Attractions/Pages/SCVNGR.aspx.)
The International Manufacturing Technology Show (IMTS), the country’s largest manufacturing technology show that took place September 13-18, is the first convention at McCormick Place to take advantage of the gaming interactivity platform. What’s more, with help from the CCTB, the IMTS developed its own SCVNGR trek for its 90,000-plus attendees and exhibitors. The trek included 12 challenges—three challenges in each of the four McCormick Place buildings, to familiarize attendees with McCormick Place, the nation’s largest meeting facility, and drive traffic to exhibitors. Participants who completed at least six of the challenges were able to unlock badges to receive discounts at the IMTS store.
The most popular challenges were “Up,Up and Away,” where players were told to take a photo of the IMTS balloon and share it on Facebook, and “Checkmate,” where they were told to go to a specific spot on the show floor and find an element in an image.
Harvey Morris, director of digital marketing and social media for the CCTB, explains, “It’s important to align the goals of why you’re doing a mobile game like SCVNGR to the mission/brand of the organization and/or the event. These days, attendees are already highly engaged on mobile devices. So having a way [such as SCVNGR] to leverage that existing behavior and tap into the enthusiasm for social sharing/gaming is a natural extension for a show planner to extend the social-media experience of the conference while demonstrating thought-leadership and shaping the attendee experience.”
If you haven’t heard about SCVNGR, you’ll want to check it out. This game is all about going places, doing challenges and learning about your surroundings in a fun and interactive format. It’s most well-known for tours, orientations and team-building exercises in museums, universities and businesses across the country. SCVNGR can be played for free from any mobile phone via iPhone app, Android app or even SMS. Visit www.scvngr.com to learn more.