Choosing the right event app can be a daunting process. As with any new technology it can be difficult to know which option is the best for your needs. Before choosing a mobile event application (app), it’s important to consider a few things before taking the plunge into the mobile event app world. My advice when choosing any new type of software or technology is to always go back to basics and think about your fundamental event needs and requirements first.
Here are a few questions to consider when choosing a mobile event app:
- Audience – what are the demographics and technographics?
As with any marketing activity, it’s important to begin with your audience and consider their needs, demographics and technographics. This will tell you how they are likely to interact with your event. A younger audience or those who work within the technology industry may expect more from a mobile app, such as the ability to share via social media or mobile gaming elements. Those less accustomed to using mobile technology may not get as much value from it and would require something more utilitarian (e.g. session schedules) and easy-to-use.
- Strategy – how will this enhance the overall event experience?
Mobile offers a host of benefits for event attendees but consider what elements of mobile technology will really contribute to your overall event strategy. If your audience is an environmentally conscious bunch and you’re aiming for a greener event, a mobile app can significantly cut down on printed material and a large amount of waste. If your event is innovative and fun, you could even incorporate a branded interactive game into your app.
- Objective -what are you seeking to accomplish?
Achieving targets related to event ROI (return on investment), ROE (return on engagement) and brand building are all part and parcel of any successful meeting or event. Mobile can help deliver on all of these but different levels of mobile apps will allow you to achieve more with the technology. Perhaps your key objective for this year’s event is increased return on engagement and extending the event lifecycle? Then you may want to focus more of your budget on a robust mobile app to engage with your audience, offering special features such as games, videos or a series of surveys.
- Metrics – how will you measure the success?
Like everything in life these days, if you can’t measure it, you can’t manage it, and ultimately you can’t justify it in the business world. Mobile event apps offer important reporting capabilities that put the power of metrics in your hand. Encouraging your event attendees to use and take full advantage of your mobile app will, in turn deliver more of the metrics you need to measure success.
- Budget – how much will it cost?
Your event budget will often be dictated by the size, type, and complexity of event you’re organizing. Many of the larger tradeshows and conferences now include a budget for their mobile event app as standard whereas smaller meetings and events may just be entertaining the idea. Either way there is a mobile solution available for all budgets from a simple out-of-the-box solution with limited customization/configuration and basic features to native apps, developed especially for an event or brand with advanced features and interactive elements. If you’re already working with an event management software company many of them now offer mobile as standard, so it is worth exploring what your current provider can offer.
Are there other considerations or tips you would recommend when selecting a mobile app for your event?
For more on mobile event technology check out the following links: