Leading Meeting Professionals

Professional Convention Management Association

September 29 2014

Here’s An Alternative To Developing Your Own Meeting Mobile App

By David McMillin

By now, every meeting professional recognizes the importance of mobile. As the digital revolution picks up speed, attendees are always looking down at their small glowing screens. While meeting professionals would love to invest in developing mobile apps to captivate those eyes on-site, many of them question whether it makes sense for their organizations and their conferences. Is the meeting big enough to justify a stand-alone app? Will attendees actually engage with the app after they go home? How hard will it be to load all of the changing information on to the app to keep it updated?

Creating an app for every event may not make sense, but that doesn’t mean the meeting must go the old-school paper program route. Hoteliers are helping meetings deliver a mobile experience by offering customizable apps for clients. For example, Marina Bay Sands in Singapore offers Meetings Concierge, a platform that provides in-app messaging, directional information, event schedules, speaker profiles and more. The property has consistently demonstrated a commitment to sustainability, and the mobile app aims to eliminate the environmental impact and costs of printing full meeting programs.

Other hoteliers have adopted similar offerings. Eventi Hotel in New York uses the PSAV Mobile Meeting Manager, M3, to give attendees up-to-date agenda information, speaker lists, attendee lists and a venue map. The app also includes a social media platform.

SEE ALSO: The Payoff Of Paperless Meetings

More Suppliers Look To Supercharge The Attendee Experience

In addition to hoteliers, some CVBs are doing additional mobile legwork for the meetings industry. Choose Chicago provides a mobile app to help attendees find restaurants, attractions and opportunities to enjoy their time outside education sessions. The Sioux Falls CVB offers a customizable app that give meeting planners the ability to update agenda, speakers, social media and more. While it helps attendees, Krista Orsack, Director of Marketing, Sioux Falls CVB, acknowledges it also helps the organization.

“When a CVB can offer a complimentary service to planners, it also provides a competitive advantage during the bidding process,” Orsack says.

Have you used a hotel’s app offering to incorporate a mobile element at your meeting? Go to Catalyst to share your thoughts on how it worked for your attendees.

This article was brought to you by Marina Bay Sands. As more US meeting professionals work to reach an international audience, many of them are starting at Singapore’s most talked-about property. Click here to learn more about why your peers are so excited to take their attendees to Singapore.

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