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Event Tech - It’s what’s up

The value of meeting in person is immeasurable; from the first handshake to the last. But large in-person events, while they provide a wealth of opportunity to meet others and share experiences to further build relationships, are usually overwhelming and discovering the best conversations, and establishing new connections, remains hit and miss; until now.

As the big business of events evolves, technology’s hand in establishing, enhancing, and maintaining the closest of bonds has become paramount to ensuring the best possible experience. Deploying an effective event app is the vanilla ice cream to your event’s apple pie, and together the experience can be magic.

While events are primarily about the in-person interaction and exploration, they should always be enhanced with an events app that displays pertinent event info, drives new connections, encourages the sharing of knowledge, and adds to the fun via an integrated social component.

All events apps are not created equal, with some more social and fun than others. By deploying a socially enabled events app, you are empowering your attendees to weed through the noise of the event, target sessions that are generating buzz, and facilitate new connections with those that have similar interests.

Additionally, attendees can start planning, connecting, and sharing days before the event begins and days after it concludes, essentially extending the event window and amplifying the fun.

Event App leaders, like Doubledutch, continue to push the envelop by combining a super fun and easy to use interface with an interactive leaderboard to award attendees for participation and drive friendly competition. Raising 34M in funding to date, Doubledutch continues to push the envelope with advancements in i-beacon support, making their app responsive to attendee proximity to key locations that have been tagged, and killer backend tools like “headcount” to survey session attendees per room based on the apps Bluetooth signal. Equally, access to serious backend analytics both demystify and speed the leads generation process.

Alternate products including Crowd Compass from CVENT are a solid choice if you are already entrenched in the CVENT product mix and looking for an easy bolt-on to socially enable the event experience. Crowd-Compass, Guidebook, EventMobi, whichever you choose, it has to be fun; and Doubledutch, remains the king of fun.

At first glance it may be obvious to question how a socially enabled events app is different from normal social media (like Twitter). Unfortunately, social media remains to be embraced by everyone, and while it’s often an uphill battle to try to convince your attendees to be more vocal on social media at the event; it’s much easier to encourage in-app social if they have already downloaded and are using the events app to set their schedule or explore session information anyways.

I’ve found a ten-fold higher adoption rate for social within an events app versus non events specific social like Twitter or LinkedIn. Encouraging both are critical and often in-app social drives more buzz on non-events specific social, leading to a win/win.

The events app arena has matured to the point where the technologies, if deployed properly, dramatically enhance and extend the experience. They are in essence an augmented reality overlay that empowers attendees to make the most out of the event, to find others with similar interests, and to share knowledge. Gone are the days of static information-only events apps. If your app doesn’t include a social component that is fun to use with powerful back-end analytics and the ability to sync data back to your CRM, you and your attendees are missing out big time because events tech, it’s what’s up!

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