Mobile apps are undoubtedly increasing in popularity for events, do you really need one? And will they make your event better? Staging Connections’ Tim Chapman gives an emphatic YES.

BY TIM CHAPMAN
General manager digital
Staging Connections

Over the last couple of years you would have heard more and more about event apps. It seems that every large conference these days is using them.

But are they just a fad? Why provide one for your event? The answer is quite simply: because the world is going mobile.
According to Gartner, more than 87 per cent of the attendees at your event will have a smartphone. Doesn’t it make sense to reach your attendees in a way they would like to be communicated with? With the phone that is right in their pocket?
Event apps make sense for everyone – from you the organiser, to your attendees, your exhibitors and your speakers.

1. Show me the money: Putting it simply – by investing in an event app – you cancel out most of your printing cost. You will no longer need paper guides, maps, session profiles, etc.
What’s more exciting – you open up a new revenue stream for your event by allowing for sponsorship opportunities in the app itself (splash page, landing page, banner ads, etc). Move engagement to the next level by literally putting your sponsor’s message at the fingertips of all event attendees.

2. It’s all about value: An event app extends the reach of your event by allowing all participants to engage before, during and even after the event. It provides value for the attendee by allowing them to plan their time effectively. They will be able to find who they are looking for and make contact with key people. It provides value for your exhibitors by expanding their promotional activities and visibility. They can now have detailed pages with logos, booth location, contact information, additional info like a video, downloadable PDF or a link to their website.
The value to your speakers comes from their ability to promote their presentations but also to be more accessible to attendees with detailed speaker information such as their bio, conference materials and contact information.

3. Be the best you can be: An app allows for an engaged audience which generally leads to a higher conversion on attendance for your event. It also means next year’s event just got easier as a satisfied attendee is generally a returning attendee.

What’s more, by providing tools like maps and directions you have an educated attendee who will make the most of everything on offer meaning a more visited and utilised exhibitor floor.

And last but not least, you will always be providing accurate information as tools like news alerts mean you can send last minute updates like a change in schedule.
Happy attendees, happy exhibitors and happy speakers all equal the best and most successful event you could ever hope for!