The Fort Lauderdale International Boat Show (FLIBS) is the world’s largest yacht show. This past year, over 150,000 people attended the five-day event. Informa Exhibitions, which organizes the event every year, wanted to provide all-over Wi-Fi connectivity for everyone at FLIBS, from vendors to attendees, while at the same time creating an additional revenue stream.
The Ruckus team recently spoke with Vladimir Danylyshyn, Director of IT and MIS at Informa Exhibitions, and he said: “For more than 60 years FLIBS has been connecting serious boat buyers and sellers from all over the world, and we’re always looking for ways to improve their experience at the show. Those connections include virtual ones over the Internet, such as making sure that vendors can access everything that they need to make a sale, including targeted promotions, payments processing, etc. To make that happen, we had to bring together the right team to provide the best connectivity solutions tailored to this unique environment.”
Because this show is unlike any other, organizers had to consider not only traditional convention center logistics, but also Wi-Fi installation outdoors and on the water. This included installation on the docks, which had to withstand hurricanes and high tides, as well as handle interference from passing yachts, and signals coming from nearby apartments and hotels.
To make their Wi-Fi connectivity a reality, Informa Exhibitions chose to work with Ruckus, Smart Wi-Fi experts GoZone WiFi, and wireless Internet provider QxC Communications to provide Smart Wi-Fi to sponsors, vendors, and attendees at the FLIBS. QxC Communications provided high-speed connectivity via Ruckus wireless access points (APs), including R310 and R730 indoor APs and T300 Series Outdoor APs. Ruckus APs provide consistent, reliable Wi-Fi in crowded outdoor venues as well as high-density indoor spaces like convention centers.
In addition to the Ruckus APs, GoZone’s Wi-Fi marketing software allowed boat show management to provide attendees with a user-friendly Wi-Fi login experience, collect detailed guest analytics, and send automated guest engagements. Informa Exhibitions offset operational costs through Wi-Fi sponsorship and advertising delivery using GoZone’s Ads4WiFi platform.
John Van Stein, the CEO of QxC Communications, praised the work of their partners and the event organizer: “Informa Exhibitions leads the event industry through their dedication to smart technology that makes event experiences like FLIBS the best in the world. They chose us to because of our reputation for providing the best wireless Internet solutions, but we couldn’t have done it without our technology partners Ruckus Networks and GoZone.”
GoZone’s Marketing4WiFi allows event management to engage with attendees during and after the event. The boat show can send automated messages to attendees, promote downloads of the official mobile app, provide easy access to the show map and exhibitor list, and promote FLIBS social media accounts.
“It is these unique partnerships with vendors such as GoZone WiFi, Informa Exhibitions and QXC Communications that enable us to deliver seamless connectivity at events like FLIBS,” said Duke Butler, Sr. Director Cloud Services and Global Alliances at Ruckus Networks. “The combination of each partner’s expertise and our high-performance outdoor and indoor APs allows a seamless solution in some of the toughest environments. We look forward to this ongoing partnership.”
The integration of GoZone’s systems over Ruckus APs enhances the attendee experience by providing detailed show information and one-to-one brand engagements. Finally, through email marketing, FLIBS management can obtain guest feedback through surveys and reviews, allowing for consistent improvement year-over-year.
When we spoke with Todd Myers, the CEO of GoZone, he told us: “Our integration with Ruckus APs has allowed GoZone to bring Smart Wi-Fi solutions to all stakeholders at FLIBS. This is our fourth year partnering with QxC Communications and Informa Exhibitions to provide a best-in-class user experience. We can continue to deliver insights that we’ve secured from the shows, such as traffic counts, demographics, etc., which help FLIBS make their event be the best it can be.”
FLIBS is a unique installation, but our Ruckus APs were up for the challenge that this complex indoor/outdoor high-density environment offered, making it possible for all of the partners to come together to execute through seamless connectivity integrations that ensured that vendors could be productive and increase revenue through smart marketing software.
Given Informa Exhibitions
continued drive for excellence for FLIBS each year, we can’t wait to see what
they will do next.
You can view the video case study here.