I’ve been involved with a lot of events over the years, from art festivals to Halloween balls. The one thing that remains constant, is change. Change is a good thing, but it’s also a beast. In order to stay on top of your game, you always need to be incorporating new ideas into the mix. Thankfully, in Buffalo, we have places like Buffalo Entertainment Pros that make it a snap to keep up with current, fun, and innovative ways to spice up corporate events, parties, festivals, and weddings.
I first learned about Buffalo Entertainment Pros when I was researching 360° photo booths in Buffalo. I had heard about the sensational 360° photo booth technology from some friends who had attended a party in downtown Buffalo. Seeing that I was planning on throwing an event or two in the not-too-distant-future, I decided to get in touch with the owner of the Buffalo Entertainment Pros, Jacob Becker.
It turns out that Becker has been in the marketing and entertainment business for some time. He launched his own agency – Marketing Mayor – back in 2012, which was mainly social media focused. Ultimately, he decided to launch a second agency – Belly Marketing (2019) – that catered to a national clientele. The company is named after his daughter, Elly – the ‘B’ is borrowed from Becker.
Since he was a young boy, Becker has been fascinated with technology. He’s always considered himself a frontrunner when it came to incorporating the latest and greatest technological advancements into his work.
“When I was 9 years old, I saved my allowance to buy a modem, so that we could access the internet in our house,” said Becker [laughing]. “I’ve always been personally tapped in to all of this. During the pandemic, my company Buffalo Video (2019) was one of the first agencies to do live streaming videos. We knew that we had to make adjustments in the ways that we were operating. We got booked like crazy and the business took off. It was something that came about very quickly. In 2021 we transitioned to Buffalo Entertainment Pros.”
As the pandemic began to wind down, Becker and his team started to analyze the market again, trying to pinpoint what’s next?
“Most of the new technology is celebrity-driven these days,” Becker told me. “They’re the ones that move the needle. When LeBron James was seen interacting with one of the 360° photo booths, I knew that we needed to get one. I order it that same week. Trends take off so fast. We were entering into a crazy video world with the live streaming videos, TikTok, etc. The AllStar 360 shoots video, it’s new, and it’s hip. As soon as we got our first one, it got booked and we began turning people away for events, so we order another. Not long after that, we ordered a third one.”
Along with the AllStar 360 that features a revolving video camera that converts images to dramatic slow-motion video, Becker also ordered a super sophisticated top-of-the-line interactive touchscreen Mirror Xtreme Photo Booth. Needless to say, these new interactive machines are the hit of the parties, partially because of the instant gratification, and partially because of their intuitive ease-of-use. As younger generations grow up with more advanced interactive cellphone technology, they, in turn, expect to find “next level” attractions at the functions they attend.
Curious about where all of this was leading, I asked Becker about the Metaverse, and what he can expect to see in years to come.
“The chatter is that it’s coming,” Becker replied. “The technology is continuing to evolve. We’re waiting to see how it’s all going to play out with the Metaverse. There have been so many points in history when you think how crazy some technology is… there’s no way. And then before you know it, everyone is using it. The Metaverse is not a next year thing – you need to have mass adoption… but it is coming. Like weddings, for example. For someone to be able to attend a wedding from across the world, by simply putting on a VR set. The rooms are tailored to your senses. It’s like being there. As much as some people push back, people will be getting married in the Metaverse. I’d like to think that we would be one of the first businesses to get into that world and offer something like that. Right now however, the brides want the touchscreens, and the emojis… they want to be part of the ongoing modernization experience.”
Speaking about all of this modernization, I got a kick out of Becker’s reply when I asked him what he thought the hottest type of wedding venue was currently in Buffalo.
“The barn,” he answered. “It’s the current trend around here. Not just the old barn – people are building modern new barn venues, like The Annex WNY. There are a bunch of them now. WNY has a blue collar feel that I think plays into that trend.”
That answer really surprised me, especially after going down the Metaverse rabbit hole. But even those who choose the elevated-barn setting for a wedding, still expect to have all of the modern trappings, from DJ’s to live video feeds, to mirror photo booths.
“We’re the only one in town with the crazy ‘next level’ mirror booth,” said Becker. “It’s our way of staying at the top of our game. As for DJ’s, DJ Shy Guy Shawn leads the DJ division – we have a great team overall. We supply the attendants for our events, who help to set up and run the photo booths. We’re a hands-on entertainment business that ensures that weddings, corporate events, parties, and graduations are as fun as possible.”
And half the fun of hosting an event is not worrying about all of the technological details, whether it’s photo/video, sound, lighting, or the latest and greatest technological gadgets.
Heck, if you’re thinking about getting married in the Metaverse, Becker can probably help you with that too.
Website: Buffalo Entertainment Pros