The Lookout #42: Mobile Event App - Do you need one?
When it came to choose an eventtech platform for our recent PIRATE Live event, there was one feature that I wasn’t particularly concerned about: a mobile event app. I am completely sold on the idea of a mobile event app for hybrid events, when your attendees are split between a remote and an in-person location. But our event was entirely virtual.
At our in-person events pre-pandemic, mobile event apps weren’t all that popular. Attendees saw downloading an app (oftentimes with less-than-elegant features) as something that took them away from the in-person experience.
For PIRATE Live, we found a platform that worked great on mobile web, and decided to forgo the extra expense of making our event available on the event platform’s app.
The first questions came up in the weeks before the event, where we fielded regular queries from participants about “what platform will you use” and “where can I download the app”?
With the pivot to virtual over the past year, things have certainly changed. Participants have become savvier to event technology, and more importantly, event technology has become more functional than ever.
It wasn’t until the event was on that we found for some sessions, the app could have accommodated better.
One of the most important benefits of virtual events is that they give your participants a choice in how they want to attend. And here, we didn’t give them all the options that we should have.
Choose your event platform carefully. Mobile web can work for a lot of things, but if an app is the best way for attendees to experience your event, clearly communicate that. Some will always bristle at downloading something. But if your attendees are looking for a mobile event app, make sure you can accommodate them.
Speaking of PIRATE Live, if you missed our “Future of Events” track, check out the video series here. But now, here are my top reads from the week:
The Events Industry:
- UFI Global Policy Leadership Series: Enabling Trade & Society [UFI] As event professionals, we understand the significance of bringing people together– and importantly, this work has been recognized outside the industry. The UFI has begun an excellent new series of conversations with public figures and leaders about the impact and importance of events and exhibitions for wider society. Currently featuring discussions with officials from Ireland, Hong Kong and Portugal, you can view on demand and look forward to new discussions posted on a regular basis.
- 57% of event-goers unhappy sharing venues with unvaccinated [The Drum] Findings of a survey of 2000 event goers suggests a slight majority do not want to share spaces with those that are unvaccinated.
- Scientist.com Announces Acquisition of InsideScientific, a Life Science Webinar, Virtual Event and Content Creation Company [BusinessWire] A trend of things to come? R&D marketplace Scientist acquires InsideScientific, a event and content creation company. As many industries have turned to digital over the past year to reach their consumers more readily in the absence of physical events, the need to develop strong virtual content as well as an event strategy has been integral to many industries. I’d expect many more announcements like this from industries of all kinds.
- The Must-Know Event Technology Trends [TechBullion] Have you incorporated RFID to your events yet? What about AI? Don’t be left behind on some of the next trends to come for the event industry.
- Onin is trying to fix event planning by combining calendar and chat [TechCrunch] New startup Onin looks to solve integration problems of digital calendars by making digital calendars more collaborative.
How to do it:
- Green shoots: how to wean the events industry off unsustainable practices [The Drum] “The events industry has a greenwashing problem by proxy”. The biggest (and splashiest) events can have significant carbon impact. But that is changing now with digital events. Don’t pawn your event’s carbon footprint to your attendees. Here’s how to make the right changes. This article is part of The Drum’s “Experimental Marketing Deep Dive” an excellent series of pieces on how to make the most of the hybrid possibilities of tomorrow.
- 4 Ways to Create an Inclusive and Accessible Virtual Event [Customer Think] Just because your event is digital does not mean it’s inclusive by default. Here are four areas where you can improve accessibility– whether it comes from greater transparency, to your speaker lineup and the platform
- How To Prepare Your Team For Sponsoring A Virtual Event [Forbes] Sponsoring digital events is not always so straightforward– both from sponsors and event organizers. In virtual events– data is often one of your best assets, and something that sponsors can truly benefit from. Here is some insight on how both parties can benefit from the experience.
- Topics – What will events look like in 2022? [Charity Digital] The landscape is open for non-profit organizations when it comes to planning their events for the coming year. To go hybrid, or fully virtual? This piece explores what event organizers in the third sector should analyze when it comes to planning their experiences for the coming year.
Don’t Miss it:
- The need for generating clear measures and metrics around ROI [Exhibition World] We must embrace digital if we want to succeed– argues Emerald’s Brian Field. He notes the growth of digital B2C marketplaces to show how tradeshows and exhibitions can develop a strategy to make even more impact.
- Connected by tech: how could technology take events up a gear? [The Drum] Insightful opinion piece about how tech should work to enable events going forward. Tech came to the rescue for the industry during the pandemic, but there is much more we can do to maximize it’s true potential. One way forward? Look at the gaming industry and how it creates true fans and experiences that capture audiences.
- The Environmental Benefits Of Virtual Events [Forbes] For us, it’s continued to be one of the most compelling parts of why we’re so bullish on virtual events: the environmental impact. Large scale in-person events have a climate cost that just cannot be ignored. So here’s how you can turn your climate impact into your competitive advantage.
- How Virtual Events Inspired A Hybrid Future [Demand Gen] ON24’s Steve Daheb unpacks the changes to the events industry over the past 18 months to demonstrate how they’ve paved the way for a future of events that give audiences more choice than ever before.
That’s all for this week’s edition of The Lookout!
Let’s stay connected if we’re not already on Linkedin or follow the PIRATEx team on Twitter. If there’s anything you would like to read about when it comes to remote, or digital events, let me know! I’d love to hear your comments and suggestions.
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Until next Friday!