As promised in our previous article, „Do I need a mobile app for my event“, in this article we will elaborate more on mobile app vendors and how to choose the best app for your event.
There is a large market for mobile apps, and vendors provide different strategies and app functionalities. While some vendors focus on exclusive events, providing apps with fancy features which require lots of development ,others focus on smaller events, letting you build the app on your own with some basic features and design, on a low budget.
There are multiple factors that you should consider when choosing a mobile app vendor:
- Mobile app vendor specilization and their app features available
On the basis of your event goal and exlusivity, you should define the mobile app vendors you want to further research on. If your event is educational, you may need enough assessment features incorporated in the app. As an example, SpotMe would be a great provider for you in this case. If your event is rather small and you don´t want to invest lots of money in the app, you might go for Whova, Webmobi or Attendify. If your event has an exclusive touch and your app should be well branded, you can check out the portfolio of Eventbasse, SpotMe, QuickMobile etc.
Here are some of the most important event app features that you may choose from:
- My profile: Usually includes basic contact information for the user, such as name, company, industry, department, job profile, user notes as well as the possibility to upload a photo
- My agenda: shows the user´s personalized agenda
- Agenda Builder: Enables attendees to see all sessions, their description, location, speakers and build their personalized agenda. Session filtering is also often possible
- Speaker list: List of event speakers, their profile and sessions that they hold
- Exhibitors/Sponsors list: List of event exhibitors/sponsors, their description, location and website
- Attendee List: Shows the list of attendees who have given permission to be publicly listed
- Social & News: Connects users to social media promoting the event
- 2D Maps: Map of the event venue, without navigation services
- Onsite Guide: Any event logistic information relevant to the attendees
- Push notifications: messages that pop up on a mobile device. App publishers can send them at any time; users receive them even when not navigating in the app
- Private Social Network: Social network within the app (photo posting, comments)
- 3D Maps: Provide navigation experience at the event. (opt-in required)
- Easy Check-In: Enables attendees to launch the registration barcode from app
- Magic Link: Allows attendees to log in with an authorized email address, without entering a lengthy password
- Direct Messaging: Enables sending direct messages to other attendees through the app
- Around Me Feature: Shows attendees who are at the respective time and place “around“ the mobile app user (using beacon technology)
- Recommendation List: Helps users discover attendees and speakers with common interest
- LinkedIn Integration: Allows attendees to see who of their LinkedIn connections are attending the event. They can also share their agendas with their LinkedIn connections
- Exchange contacts: Possibility to exchange contacts by scanning unique user QR code and save the contact in the app
- Meeting Scheduler: Allows users to create meeting invitations and send them via the app to other users
- Surveys: Provide important feedback from attendees on the event or particular sessions
- Live Polls: Enable event organizers to connect attendees with speakers or moderators, by asking questions during the session and providing feedback immediately after a demonstration
- Sessions Recommendations: Recommended sessions based on attendees´ interests and connections (opt-in required)
- Collateral Provision: Enables the download of event collateral through the app
- Gamification: Motivates attendees to engage with peers by using game mechanics. Attendees can earn points/rewards for every task completed
- Ability to pull data from 3rd party platforms
If your event is really complex and needs to process a big amount of data from 3rd party apps such as registration platforms, it will be time-consuming to manually pull this data into the app. That´s why the integration of APIs from 3rd party platforms can be a critical feature. Check this possibility out with your provider.
- You can easily build the app on your own on a small budget of around 1000-2000 dollars, with companies like Whova,WebMobi or Attendify. If your event requires using a thoroughly-customized app, you may need to invest in the range of 30,000 to80,000 dollars.
- Content management system and possibility to build and update the app on your own
Event managers are painfully aware that there are lots of changes incurring during the event planning and that requires fast and frequent updates of the data published in the app. In this case, having access to the app´s content management system will allow you to do the required updates yourself, in real time.
Selected vendors´ evaluation
Event Apps Impressions
In the next blog, we will guide you how to optimally use your ready event app so that your app investment contributes to the success of the event.