On Trend

Engagement Trends Emerging in May/June 2024

Engagement Trends Emerging in May/June 2024

Explore how trends in AI competition, women’s sports, JOMO, and sleuthing transform how attendees participate in our events.
The newest edition of Opus Agency’s Talent Spotlight report is here.

Explore the top four engagement trends emerging in May and June below, then head over to the full report for more cultural moments, speaker recommendations, entertainment trends, and talent recommendations. 

Battle of the AI Bots 

OpenAI’s ChatGPT began an AI frenzy, with all major tech companies jumping in to develop their own generative AI chatbot. With services like Microsoft Copilot, Google Gemini, and Meta AI becoming widely available, users are now discussing the pros and cons of each platform—forming new brand loyalties based on the information, capabilities, and even personality of each AI chatbot. 

This trend shows that users are becoming more comfortable with and excited about AI, to the point of forming new brand loyalties. Here are three ways to engage your newly AI-eager audience.

  1. Dive in with Playful Activations
    Offer interactive experiences with AI activations and chatbots. Let attendees have fun exploring the possibilities. Here’s some inspiration to ignite your creativity:
    • The Dreamkeeper: An online AI activation brought to life at an Atlassian Teams event, The Dreamkeeper was designed to bring your dreams to life through AI-generated imagery that users enter after scanning a QR code. 
    • Coca-Cola Spiced Shop: To celebrate the launch of Coca-Cola Spiced, Coca-Cola created the Spiced Shop in NYC, an experiential art installation revealed as an immersive AI-driven taste experience. Using generative AI, consumers will express what they taste and feel to create a visual manifestation of their Coca-Cola Spiced experience that is uniquely their own.
    • Google Flowers: An installation within Google’s New York office, this kinetic exhibit uses real-time sensing and machine learning to respond to visitors and passersby. During the day, the flowers bloom in two stages, reacting to the movement of people in the lobby below. In the evening, the choreography is cued by outside pedestrians. Flowers is a joyful statement to the Chelsea community and an invitation to look around, rewarding those who slow their pace to watch the flowers bloom.
    • Adult Swim Rickflector: Adult Swim brought Comic-Con attendees inside the world of Rick and Morty with the Rickflector, in which visitors customized a character based on their likeness to create an avatar. Inside, their avatar’s DNA was scrambled with that of the show’s popular characters, which came to life in one of five games set in the show's world through generative AI. 
    • Google Cloud AI Penalty Challenge: Google Cloud activated at Big Data and AI Expo with the AI Penalty Challenge, an interactive booth experience where attendees could do their best penalty kick and be graded by their AI Coach on Style, Power, and Accuracy. This gamified activation is a way to get attendees involved without plugging into a headset or tablet while demonstrating their AI capabilities. 
  2. Host an AI Titans Debate
    AI Everything Global hosts lively “AI Titans Debates,” where they design a colosseum-style battle where different AI platforms go head-to-head. This engaging format leaves attendees fascinated by the complexities of AI and scratches the curiosity itch of which platforms are better suited for their needs. 
  3. Humanize AI Chatbots
    Some companies have eased the transition to AI workers by assigning them Myers-Briggs personality types. Consider giving your event chatbots a relatable, human quality to make interactions more natural and engaging.

Coca-Cola Spiced Shop in NYC

Women’s Sports

Women’s sports have seen record-breaking viewership that is steadily rising. With women’s basketball shattering its viewership record again this year, drawing more viewers for its championship game than the men’s final, and Caitlin Clark's stardom lighting an additional fire, women’s sports is seeing an overdue excitement that is hopeful of becoming a permanent fixture in pop culture. 

Event professionals can tap into this trend, too. Here’s the playbook:

  1. Broadcast Major Women’s Sporting Events
    Many companies broadcast major sporting events like the World Cup or Olympics during their brand events, typically in common areas and lounge spaces. Expand your horizons and include women’s sporting events to cater to a more diverse crowd. By doing so, you're embracing inclusivity and ensuring that everyone feels represented and valued. 
  2. Sponsor Women’s Leagues
    Explore sponsorship opportunities with leagues like the WNBA, FIFA Women’s, or F1 Academy, which is making headlines with new partnerships with Charlotte Tilbury and Netflix
  3. Empower New Voices
    Invite female athletes to speak at your event or feature existing partnerships with women’s sports organizations on your expo floor. To create a meaningful connection with your audience, consider partnering with nonprofits that support young female athletes. 
  4. Forge Unique Partnerships
    Think outside the box by partnering with organizations in the women’s sports sphere. Take inspiration from “The Sports Bra,” the first bar in the world to exclusively feature women’s sports, which just signed a deal with Reddit founder to begin franchising nationally. Invite the organization to host a party or activation during your event.

Kamilla Cardoso, Kiki Rice, and Caitlin Clark speak on panel for ESPN.


As the antithesis to FOMO, JOMO, ‘Joy of Missing Out,’ has emerged in response to the cultural shift to slower living. It offers a serene sanctuary to savor the present, prioritize well-being, and find contentment in the art of missing out on the unnecessary. #JOMO has amassed over 53M views on TikTok, and brands like Frito-Lays and Triscuit have featured JOMO in recent campaigns, solidifying the new development in the joyconomy

Here’s how event planners can leverage JOMO:

  1. The Anti-Party
    Offer an “anti-party” alongside your main event. This low-stimulation get-together caters to attendees seeking a more relaxed experience. Go immersive with an auditory art experience or wellness-focused with yoga sessions and group meditation. 
  2. Sleep Activations
    Inspired by recent sleep tourism trends, sleep activations feature suspended hammock cocoons where attendees can take a well-earned power nap. This caters to the growing desire to prioritize rest and well-being, an essential aspect of JOMO.
Conrad Bali SWAY Sleep Therapy Experience

Gen Z Super Sleuths

The internet and social media have become instant gratification machines, with answers available at the click of a button. In response, Gen Z has become insatiably curious, looking for in-depth exploration of new perspectives and diverse topics. From Taylor Swift’s famous Easter eggs giving Gen Z an outlet to uncover meaning to the rise of detective and true crime content, Gen Z has become the most curious, rabbit hole-diving generation yet.

Here’s how event pros can tap into this generational curiosity:

  1. Mazes and Escape Rooms
    Incorporate mazes or escape rooms that challenge attendees to apply what they’ve learned throughout the event. This gamified learning experience will boost engagement and knowledge retention. 
  2. Hidden Gems and Easter Eggs
    Design app-based scavenger hunts with Easter eggs hidden throughout the event. Winners unlock exclusive experiences or limited-edition swag. Consider a pre-event marketing campaign where attendees uncover clues about guest speakers, themes, or entertainment through interactive challenges.
  3. Hidden Doors and Secret Spaces
    Popular at security conferences, secret rooms add a heightened level of mystique to your event. Hidden doors, coded clues, and secret messages on a community channel will have attendees eager to unravel the mystery.
Hulu’s Only Murders in the Building NYC pop-up filled with Easter eggs and clues.

Want More?

Head over to the full report to explore more engagement and entertainment trends and listen to and learn about emerging talent.

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