Your event app is a way to ensure that all event information is provided clearly in one place; it means participants spend less time searching for information, and more time networking and learning. Ultimately, the app contributes to your attendee’s experience so they get the most out of your event.
Step 1: Promote It!
Promoting the app to participants ahead of time is critical to ensuring that they make the best use of it. Before the event, push the app through social media and in any print material. Let people know it’s live, and that they can use it to build and personalize their event program.
And during the event, keep letting participants know—through print material and posters, as well as announcements from the podium—that they can be using the app to optimize their experience.
For example, during the opening plenary session, take four or five minutes to demonstrate the app, and encourage participants to use it. In addition, you can have moderators or speakers offer a reminder at the beginning and end of each session, letting participants know about the app’s survey function and asking for their feedback.
Step 2: The Power of Green
To help boost uptake further, you can let users know that when they use the app, they’re helping cut the need for printing, and contributing to a greener meeting.
Participants can be informed in advance that the event will be mostly digital, with on-demand printing for those who are willing to pay for it. Some companies let participants know that the money saved will be donated to an environmental organization; this can help promote app buy-in.
Step 3: Offer a Helping Hand
Because not every interface is obvious to every person, it’s important to provide new users with a tutorial on how to use the app. Each technology comes with its own set of complications, and if you don’t want to cannibalize event staff to deal with tech support issues, it’s a good idea to have a troubleshooting team onsite.
An app booth can be a great way to ensure that participants know where to go with their questions, and helps keep the event help desk from being overwhelmed with app-related questions. Having an onsite concierge or support person available will help you streamline the flow of information. You might choose to allocate staff from within your organization, or you might decide you need a marketing agency to act as the missing link between you and your tech provider.
Either way, having a point person who can answer questions increases the app’s usability, making participants more likely to want to download and make best use of it.
Step 4: Let the Numbers Do the Talking
Event apps can be useful after your event ends, as well. You can use attendee feedback and surveys to gauge which sessions or speakers were most popular, and you can assess the distribution of interest across your event program. Were 8:00 a.m. sessions attended better than 3:00 p.m. ones? This information can help guide program development for next year’s event.