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How mobile-thinking can drive event success

It’s hard to separate your event attendees from their mobile devices, so why not use it to your advantage to improve your chances of event success?

Trade shows and conferences are a big part of the B2B world. Five years ago speakers wouldn’t have liked attendees using their phones all the time, but now it’s a good sign. It means they are sharing the speaker’s thoughts, usually on Twitter, and mostly connected by a hashtag. This keeps the conversation going between event attendees who are not otherwise connected.

How much do they use it? One event set a record of 6,438 tweets in a day.

With so much time spent on mobile devices, marketers need to leverage this interaction to increase the success of their event.

mobile-events-text-picUsing SMS to relieve the stress

From my experience, one of the most stressful things about attending an event is keeping your pass or registration number at hand to get in. I have to scroll through my email to find it or use the search function which doesn’t always seem to work well.

This where event marketers can help. Make the experience more pleasant by texting attendees the event code in the morning, which will reduce queue times as well.  It’s a small thing that can go a long way. You can even tap into extra revenue by offering the exhibitors the chance to sponsor the text.

Leverage the social media already in use

I’ve already mentioned how much attendees love to tweet about the amazing knowledge they get from your speakers. So why not encourage more of that and use it to promote the event? First, make sure you announce the Twitter hashtag well in advance to leverage customer enthusiasm even before the event starts.

Tweeting for event success

And use email to announce the official hashtag. You can include it in the confirmation of registration, when you send the electronic pass, or any other emails about the event.

If you have a multi-day event, use the Twitter engagement from the first day to persuade non-attendees to come for the following days. Send them an email with the full agenda for every day to remind them why they’ve registered. And show them what they’re missing out on by including the twitter feed with the official hashtag, or the most popular tweets.

Go digital with your event guide

Mobile apps are a great resource for events. Not all websites load very quickly on mobile, but an app can provide attendees with the information they need quickly. Include the agenda, floorplan, key speakers, individual profiles of exhibitors, pretty much what you would find in a paper version of the event guide. Because it’s on their phone, they can access it at any time, they don’t need to carry an extra item around the venue and your printing costs go down.

Don’t worry if you don’t have a coding team in-house or don’t have the budget to acquire a native app for your event. There are simpler solutions that will help you give your attendees a great experience. But if you can afford something more advanced, you can create an app that will give you reports on:

  • Clicks
  • Shares
  • Most popular talks and speakers
  • Location tracking to identify the hot spots

That will give you a live evaluation of the event’s success, and food for thought when planning for next year.

Points to remember:

  • SMS can help you create a smoother experience for your attendees and provide opportunity for extra revenue
  • You attendees are already using social media to talk about your event. Encourage them in advance to do that and then use it as a persuasion tool to get more people to come
  • No matter the budget, a mobile app can be the go-to guide for your event, making attendees happy and contributing to your event’s success

Interested in more tips about marketing for event success? Get quick tips and case studies from our dedicated webinar in the Adestra archive.

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