We teamed up with Tim LaFleur, CMP/Director of Mobile Solutions and Strategy at Meetings & Incentives Worldwide (M&IW), to bring you an in-depth, insightful interview on what it really takes to select the right mobile app for your event.
What is your role at M&IW?
Since taking on the Director of Mobile Technology role, I began an initiative and made it M&IW’s mission to guarantee its clients are matched with the perfect event app. I knew in order to do that, we would need to go beyond the basic app features. We would also need to utilize our comprehensive understanding of event operations and dive deep into each client’s specific needs. The service model we created has since become a best practice in the industry.
Ideally, what measures should be taken by event planners and organizers when searching for an event app?
The first step is to look beyond each individual app feature, and not take it at face value. We do this by stripping each feature down to its basic functionality (i.e. speakers, schedule, sponsors, etc.). Thinking deeper about a section in terms of the specific sub-functions it performs opens up a world of possibilities. Once we’ve done that, we’re able to create something special for the client.
The best app consultancies encourage their clients to think in terms of a three-legged stool. Leg #1 of the stool represents the full understanding of how each event app feature truly works. Leg #2 represents a deep understanding of the event industry itself, and finally, leg #3 is a keen awareness of clients’ specific needs and overall objectives. If any one of the legs falls short, the stool will be off balance and your event app strategy has the potential to fall apart.
Being uniquely positioned to understand each component of the three-legged stool allows app users to take full advantage of its platform and intended purpose. Taking time to ask questions when searching for an event app will ensure you get to know the product well. It’s crucial that you become as familiar with your event app as the provider itself.
A client’s deep understanding of this concept, combined with our unique perspective on apps and knowledge of how meetings and events typically flow allows for the unique perspective needed to craft the best event app for each client.
Can you give us examples of a few features and why they should not be taken only at face value?
Let’s say you’re an event planner looking for an app with a social wall. Do you truly understand how the social wall will function? It’s easy to simply check a box stating that the chosen app supports a social wall, but you need to ensure you’re asking how the social wall actually functions. For instance, once you know you need a social wall, you need to delve deep and ask these specific questions:
See the difference? While both apps above actually do have a social wall feature, they are very different, and the latter may pose privacy concerns for attendees who are only interested in networking through the app and not with their personal social media profiles. Details like these can affect your adoption rate, so make sure you know the exact details of each specific functionality.
What advice would you give to event planners and organizers looking to implement a mobile app for an event or conference?
Next time you’re tasked with implementing a mobile app for your events, pose the following questions:
These four simple questions will help you communicate with attendees more efficiently, achieve a more engaged audience and realize a greater return on your event app investment.
Attendify is the only event technology company that helps you build deeper relationships at your events. Unlike other event apps, Attendify helps you create your event app quickly and easily, manage and update your app effortlessly, get real-time feedback and analytics, demonstrate success and ROI. In addition, Attendify offers the first and only Social Lead Retrieval system, an automated website builder and deep event analytics that marketers can use to generate more customers and revenue. Create your app now.