Written by James Fierce on June 12, 2017
Event planners are beginning to understand the importance of an event app to the overall experience of their attendees. A great app will provide an all in one solution that is easily accessible, super user-friendly, and packed with useful information about the event.
Wow your attendees by following this simple 13 step process.
1. Make sure that your event needs an event app.
Let’s be honest, event apps aren’t the perfect fit for every event… Before committing to one, you should make sure that there is a need and demand for it. The quiz below will tell you if you need an event app or not. Before continuing, I’d highly suggest that you take a minute to complete it:
2. Plan Your Event With The App In Mind.
Understanding the features and benefits of your app is the first step. This will allow you to incorporate its functionality during your planning which will help ensure successful implementation and use. For example, if you know ahead of time that your app can incorporate speakers, you can inform the speakers and request links so they can be included.
3. Branding Alignment.
It is crucial that the branding of the event is incorporated into the app as it is being set up. Make sure the logos, color schemes, vocabulary, general vibe, cause, and mission all align with the event. It is important that the person tasked with setting up the app is part of the event planning team and has access to all of the critical event information.
4. The app must be user-friendly.
It almost goes without saying, however, the user experience is often overlooked. If the user struggles to download the app, cannot figure out what to do once it opens, or has problems understanding its features and benefits, it won’t get used. There are a lot of apps out there that over complicate things. However, when it comes to event apps, simplicity should be your friend. Intuitive design is a must.
5. Have a game plan for Wi-Fi.
Many large conference venues either charge a prohibitive rate to use their Wi-Fi, or have inadequate coverage for the entire space. Bring several mobile Wi-Fi units and have signs posted strategically detailing access names and passwords. Or, if you have the budget, you can hire a third party to take care of this for you. If you are not proactive in this regard, your event could go down in flames.
6. Avoid App Fatigue.
If possible, limit the amount of competing technology at your event. Ideally, the app you use will incorporate the agenda, speaker information, sponsor links, the ability to send to push notifications, and increase the engagement during the event.
7. Eliminate Glitches In The App.
A trial run and review of information in the app is essential prior to the event going live. Have an independent person double check the information to ensure the branding is on point, information is accurate, and schedules are correct.
8. Receive the data from your event.
Find an event app that can provide you with the meaningful and impactful data that surrounds your event. This type of information can be extremely useful for you moving forward. It will allow you to evaluate what actually happened during the event, while helping you drive decision making for future events.
9. Incentivise Attendees To Use The App.
Make sure that the audience understands the benefits and functionality of the platform. Engage with them during the event through the app and take it to the next level by incorporating games. Your audience expects an unforgettable experience and the right app can help make that happen for them.
10. Involve Speakers and Sponsors.
Notify them during the planning phase of the features of your app and how they can benefit from them. Encourage and incentivize them to engage with the attendees through the app. They generally have a lot of influence and can play a significant role in increasing the adoption rate during the event.
11. Use Push Notifications.
This is a great way to engage attendees and keep them informed during the event. Speakers and sponsors can provide amazing walk away offers. You can also create a short survey to get immediate feedback and provide links to upcoming events.
12. Hold an engaging activity.
At a recent event I attended, the Socio App was used to facilitate a huge speed networking session. The app allows people to connect at an unprecedented level. Everyone had so much fun using it to network and it made the whole experience unforgettable. Finding an app that helps facilitate networking has become a must.
13. Solicit Feedback. Talk to the attendees during the event and find out what they think. Surveys are great, but it’s also important to take time and talk to the users. Ask them what they liked, what they did not and for any recommendations for future events.
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