Mobile event apps are becoming increasingly popular among event planners, with users lauding them as an invaluable promotional and organizational tool. But what makes an event app successful?
The measure of success for any mobile event app is how many people actually use it. A successful event app that attendees will want to continue using even after the event has ended not only needs to be informational, but engaging and enjoyable to use as well.
Build the App around the Event
There is no one cookie-cutter formula for creating a successful mobile event app because every event will require different areas of focus. While every app should have the most basic features, such as event schedules and information, the extra features you add should be built around the type and size of the event.
If the app is for a large trade show or convention where thousands of people will gather, focus on perfecting features like event schedules and locations so that there isn’t any confusion about where to go and when. For smaller events, the main focus should be on the app’s networking features and attendee’s ability to keep track of contact information.
Give Yourself Plenty of Time
On average, it can take anywhere from 4 to 6 weeks to deliver a custom app. Not only should you allow time for development, but you’ll also need to allow a considerable amount of time for promotion and pre-registration of attendees.
The most common reasons attendees don’t download event apps are either because they don’t know they exist, or they don’t fully understand the benefits. This is why your promotional campaign needs to be as clear and as widespread as possible – integrate information about the app into emails, social media posts, and even information pages.
Keep It Simple
Remember your audience. While you as a developer might be familiar with high-brow tech and industry jargon, there’s a good chance that some of the 10,000 people attending your event won’t be. Use simple, easy to understand language.
Make It Interactive
It’s certainly handy and eco-friendly to have event information and scheduling on a mobile event app, but if those are the only features you offer, attendees won’t be checking it very often. To maximize engagement, make your app interactive – include polls, pose questions, and encourage dialogue.
Interactivity doesn’t only give attendees more reason to use your app, but gives you as the event planner an important source of feedback as well. By conducting post-event surveys and polling attendees during the event, you can improve upon both the event and the app itself in the future.
Provide Networking Tools
Professionals don’t just attend large conferences and conventions to listen to speakers and view presentations, they go to network, so it’s important that your mobile event app provides a way for them to view contact information and stay in touch with the people they meet. Allow users to connect their Facebook and LinkedIn profiles to the app for other attendees to view and connect with.
Implement Social Media
With over 80% of Americans using some form of social media, with Facebook being the most popular platform, you shouldn’t neglect incorporating it into your mobile event app. Allow attendees to post photos to company Facebook walls and feedback to their Twitter accounts. Not only does this keep attendees engaged in your event, but it also provides you with organic, shareable photos to use promotionally in the future.