A mobile app is a must-have in today’s meetings industry. After all, attendees are already using mobile tools for everything else they do on a daily basis — shopping, booking travel, watching videos and reading news. So why wouldn’t they want to learn and network with help from a mobile companion? However, creating an app and simply loading it on to the Apple Store or the Google Play Store isn’t enough. To get a sense of some of the key lessons meeting planners should consider when outlining a mobile strategy, we caught up with Michael Douglas, Director of Sales, Lanyon Mobile.
As you prepare for mobile success in 2016, follow these three rules — and be sure to check out Douglas’ recent PCMA webinar, brought to you by Lanyon, for more helpful insights.
1) Marketing matters more than ever before.
Attendees may have already paid registration fees, but that doesn’t automatically mean they’ll install the meeting’s mobile app on their smartphones or tablets. Remember that they are inundated with other emails, phone calls and responsibilities, so downloading a mobile meeting app and exploring its capabilities aren’t at the top of the to-do list. With that in mind, Douglas says meeting planners should make promoting the app a top priority.
“You must make the mobile app visible to attendees in stages prior to the event,” Douglas says. “Mentions on the meeting’s website and in emails can play a role, but communication can be much more direct. It’s important to educate attendees on why they should download the app well before they arrive on-site.”
2) The experience should be seamless from screen to screen.
Attendees may be glued to their smartphones and tablets, but Douglas says they may conduct many of the pre-meeting activities on a bigger screen.
“The biggest driver that encourages mobile uptake is a solid desktop service,” Douglas says. “When attendees log on to the meeting’s website to highlight favorite sessions and begin arranging appointments, they’ll know their choices will sync with the mobile app. That seamless personalization plays a critical role in driving mobile app adoption.”
3) A one-off app is a no-no.
Thinking about developing a mobile app solely for a three-day program? Think again.
“Stand-alone event apps are kind of the exception these days,” Douglas says. “It’s more beneficial to develop an app that serves multiple events. With a multi-event app, attendees already have an app on their phone, and you can engage them with appropriate push notifications.”
Douglas says the multi-event app can be an important piece of a year-round experience that delivers news and membership information for an association, integrates with social media and reminds users of all the services the organization offers.
Interested in learning more mobile tips? Click here for a webinar brought to you for free by Lanyon.