How to make the most of a customised event app
Thursday, 18 June 2015
With a smartphone in everyone’s pocket, and mobile internet access taken for granted, the potential for interaction and participation has never been greater.
One way event planners can harness this is by commissioning a customised event app for smartphones, designed and tailored for use by delegates planning to attend a particular occasion. Here is a guide to making the most of these bespoke digital tools.
Make vital information accessible
One basic but essential function of an event app is its capacity to store important practical information. Schedules, timings, venues (including maps) and contact information should all be programmed into the platform, allowing delegates to access key data instantly.
Showcase your speakers
Good event apps allow you to enter and display information about the people delegates can look forward to hearing from at the event. This can help to build anticipation and interest – they will have time to research the speakers and think of questions, making for a more engaging experience.
Make important assets available
Kiss goodbye to missing attachments and piles of paper handouts. Your event app should be able to act as a digital storage space, allowing useful notes, documents and assets to be accessed, downloaded and used by delegates as and when they need them.
List and contact attendees
Communication with delegates is made easier, as your attendee list is stored electronically along with the ability to contact all or some of them with relevant, timely messages.
Not only can you contact delegates, but delegates should also be able to contact each other. Interactive features like this allow a network of communication to build around an event – your attendees can compare notes, make new contacts and even share travel arrangements.
Link to social networks
Another great way to encourage the growth of communication and social activity around an event is to link it to existing social networks. You can connect most apps to existing event channels on Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn, allowing users to network there and encouraging more discussions.
Allow delegates to customise their event schedule
We live in the age of personalisation. And digital technology is a major driver of that. A truly customised event app allows attendees to build their own personalised schedule by adding different sessions and events to their calendar. A small but very useful feature that makes a big difference.
Send push notifications
Tap into one of the smartphone’s most useful elements: the push notification. You can use this feature to keep attendees abreast of activities and send reminders about upcoming sessions.
Hold a live Q&A session
Once people are at the event, participation can be even further enhanced with live interaction. Delegates can submit questions via the app during a session, allowing more people to get involved and interact with the speaker or session coordinator, particularly in large presentations.
Highlight your sponsors
The app provides a valuable forum for event partners and other stakeholders to directly communication with delegates, reinforce their brand message and offer promotions and discounts. As an event organiser, this provides you with an opportunity to generate revenue.
Collect data and feedback
Knowledge is power. That’s something we have always known. Digital technology makes it easier than ever to collect and use valuable knowledge. Collect useful data from your delegates via your customised app by making it easy for them to complete surveys and give feedback on the event. You can also analyse session attendance and use it to help inform the structure and capacity of future events.