Mobile event apps are probably not the first thing on your list when budgeting for your next event. After the venue, the food and beverage, the audio visual, we're lucky if event apps make the top ten. Which means sometimes the cost can become more important than the value of the attendee experience. These three key benefits help you better share why you're making the valuable investment into the best mobile event app and not just an average one that does just enough.
Attendee Engagement Matters
A mobile event app can help you better engage people who might become attendees, turn attendees into participants, and ultimately convert participants into loyal and delighted fans of the conference or tradeshow.
But you as the event manager probably know all of this already.
Your C-Suite, conference committee, or Board of Directors might not though. And making an investment into more event technology, especially when they don't know all of the benefits, can feel like just one more expense in an already expensive venture like the 82% of event planners who shared that budget is their biggest concern.
To help keep your events team inspired and give you talking points, we've cultivated three critical benefits (and statistics) for making the a mobile event app investment with the features that will help you meet your event goals.
1. You Get More from Your Engagement Return on Investment
According to EventMB blog, the priority of attendees attending events is networking (82%), learning (71%) and entertainment (38%). Which leads us to think that tracking our event's engagement ROI would be pretty important. However, when we go to provide KPIs to leadership, we typically lead with financial data rather than engagement data.
Why? Engagement is tough to track, usually qualitative from surveys that you then make assumptions about how engaging and powerful your event really was.
By investing in a mobile event app, you can provide leadership with both quantitative and qualitative data. How many downloaded, how many private and public messages were sent, how many meetings set up, how many name badges scanned, etc. You have return on engagement AND return on financial investment numbers.
2. Your Mobile Event App Makes Logistics Easier, Saving Time & Money
More than just a digital program guide, an investment in a mobile event app and website platform helps you coordinate and communicate with your attendees in real-time. Today, event apps are more powerful event management systems than spreadsheets. So, why are you still entering the agenda and/or all those CEUs in manually?
Probably because your budget is stretched a bit thin, and you're trying to justify spending the money on an event app. So, let's think about it a little bit differently...cost versus value.
We bet if you took your average hourly staff rate and and the number of hours to do all of this work manually, it would add up or even exceed the cost of an event app. Rakuten's meeting staff reported saving more than 50% of time and money when they switched from manual work to an event app, with continued value being seen each year.
Because it's not just the CEUs. It's the last minute room changes and you've already printed the program guide. It's the message you needed to send because the bus isn't where it should be and now you need to get 2,000 people to the other side of the convention center. It's the exhibitors telling you it'd be great if they had a way to connect with attendees for a follow up private meeting after they connected at the booth.
A mobile event app should be simple to set up (think easy to import in or pull in your agenda, your attendees, your sponsors/exhibitors, and so on), easy to brand in your look and feel without having to pay for customization, and have a solid knowledge base that allows everyone who touches the event app, from an attendee to an exhibitor, to the intern who is helping you manage it get the best results.
3. The Best Mobile Event App Makes it Easy to Integrate With Your Member or Customer Database
Your member or customer database is probably the brain of your organization. It's where the buyer history, the member records, the continuing education units live. A good mobile event app investment means that information can come in from these databases to your event app and can flow back to it again. Seamlessly, without you or your team doing anything but connecting a data feed.
How do you know if you're making the right mobile event app choice where integration is concerned? Ask if they already integrate with the platforms you're using. If they don't, ask if they have an open API, which in layman's terms lets your event app talk to other platforms easily by building a bridge between your event app’s database and your third-party database (whether it be an abstract management company, registration company or any other database like Salesforce or an AMS like Membersuite or NetForum) to pull in and push back data from specific modules.
Don't Settle for an Average Mobile Event App
These days, the best mobile event app investment is one based on your event goals and attendee needs. If you're looking for more engagement, more connectively, the best experience, do concentrate on that rather than only price. Your attendees expect more and exceptional meeting planners don't settle for the base minimum — they use apps to answer specific needs of their attendees, and create a much more engaging and experience-driven event in the process.
How Pathable Can Help
Don't feel like you have to wander alone when choosing an event app. Our team is always standing by to answer questions, bounce ideas off of, and meet up with you at the next industry tradeshow to chat about options you're considering. If you’re looking for more in-depth advice on apps and event management, subscribe to the Pathable blog or join us for one of our monthly CMP webinars. And as always, when you're ready to take the next step, don’t hesitate to schedule a free demo!