The hashtag printer trend continues to gain on the conference scene, not surprising for a device that works as both a marketing tool and an attendee diversion, and can also be a revenue generator for groups that offer it up as a sponsorship opportunity.
Here’s how a hashtag printer works: the Internet-connected device automatically scans Instagram and Twitter for your designated conference hashtag. When the printer finds that hashtag, it grabs the associated image and prepares it for printing with a branded frame or banner, which can include your organization or conference logo as well as a sponsor logo. Many of the systems automatically print out all the images; others print on request when an attendee taps the image on a screen.
The genius, of course, is that the printer encourages attendees to upload event photos with the conference hashtag onto social media sites in return for the instant gratification of walking away with a photo in hand. Many of the providers offer an analytics piece, allowing you to know the volume and reach of this attendee-generated content.
At TagPrints, which had its hashtag printers at about 500 conferences and events in 2016, the cost runs about $3,500 for a three-day meeting. According to Managing Partner Andy Marsh that cost can be more than offset by sponsorships.