September 28, 2018
Sponsoring any type of event today is just as exciting as it was 10 and 20 years ago. You invest your team in planning every detail, including where attendees will park, which speakers you will host, and how to market to the right demographics. You show up early the day of the event and open the doors with great excitement, shaking hands and pointing attendees in the direction of refreshments, seminars, and educational materials. You have high hopes for a successful event, but your chance of receiving that outcome depends on your answer to one question: are you keeping up with the multi-screen attendees?
As you watch those attendees walk through the door to enjoy your event, you can assume that approximately two out of every three are carrying a smartphone. You may even assume that half of those attendees are carrying a tablet. As of 2014, nearly 70 percent of adults in the UK reported using mobile devices to access the internet, with smartphones, tablets, and laptops topping the popularity list. This includes more than 62 percent of people between the ages of 45 and 54, so you can’t assume that an older audience eliminates your need for advanced electronic features at your event.
While most of these internet-savvy attendees bring their devices along to keep in touch with people not at your event or to take notes, most will appreciate any electronic services incorporated into your event. They’ve attended other events where their electronic gadgets added entertainment and educational opportunities, so their expectations have been significantly raised.
Using Those Screens for Event Preparation
Research has proven that a large percentage of event attendees now utilise multiple electronic devices when researching, registering, and preparing for all types of events. They may learn about an event through social media or a website while browsing the internet on their smartphones, laptops, or desktop computers. Many will follow links to learn more about events, eventually registering through their laptops or desktop computers. Now that mobile apps for events are common, most will immediately search their app store or look at a website related to the event in order to download any app available.
You can start communicating with attendees before the event takes place. This gives you new opportunities to fuel excitement and get participants talking about the upcoming event.
Attendees can view schedules, parking details, and other information in time for advance preparation. This creates a more enjoyable experience with many frustrations eliminated.
Attendees can communicate with one another, arranging meet-ups and sharing their enthusiasm for the event.
If there are delays or emergencies the day of the event, you can get word to many of your attendees quickly.
Enriching Your Event Activities with Electronic Communications
You can continue utilising those mobile devices during your event to enrich the experience of connected attendees. Send out real-time announcements regarding refreshments, vendors, and free entertainment available at specific times. This will increase participation for side acts and vendor services, since attendees aren’t left to discover those features alone. You can tell them where you want them to go and what you want them to do, and most will happily comply.
Many speakers will also appreciate having access to the app. They can send special messages to their audience, giving away freebies or conducting surveys to make sure everyone is paying attention. If they want to implement games or other interactive elements to make their time on stage more rewarding, electronic messages and questions can be set to go out at the right times.
It’s also possible to reduce your budget when using a mobile app, since a large percentage of attendees will have access to maps, schedules, and programs through the app. You may still print some of these items for those not electronically connected.
Post-Event Data & Follow-Up Marketing
You don’t have to wait until the event is over to ask attendees about their experiences. Send out electronic surveys and ask for feedback as they’re walking out of the event. You can even offer surveys and feedback opportunities for individual sessions or seminars, collecting information specific to each speaker or event rather than limiting data to the overall event experience.
Do you have additional events, products, or services that you would like to up sell to your event participants? Are you always trying to increase product sales during your events? If so, you can use your mobile app and digital signage to deliver special discounts and other deals to attendees during and after the event.
Keeping Up is Easier than You May Think
Does this information excite or overwhelm you? We hope it gets you motivated to improve your upcoming events, but we’re here to help you with the technical details either way. With a professional event services team on your side, you can develop an app, create effective digital signage, and improve your event Wi-Fi connections without taking your eye away from other details of the event.