A Mobile Event App Guide for Attendees

Posted by Matt Milloway on Feb 16, 2015

The majority of blog posts and articles related to mobile event apps focus on the inherent benefits of mobile technology, overviews of features, and best practices for topics ranging from event promotion to selling sponsorships. But what about the attendee experience during an event? Keep reading to learn how a number of event app features impact attendees--the most important users of all--in real-life examples at conferences, trade shows, and meetings.

Before the Event

Prior to arriving at the event, an attendee easily downloads the app from a branded url provided by the organization through email, social media, or on a webpage devoted to the conference or meeting. The mobile app’s content--mostly available offline for the attendee to access on his or her flight--conveniently contains all pertinent travel information like public transportation, hotel or conference facility maps, and even local restaurants. The attendee is also able to review PDF abstracts and speaker bios from the app en route to prepare for important sessions, all of which are bookmarkable to create a customized schedule and highlight other key content. In a nutshell: the attendee is organized before the event, educated on pertinent topics, and knows how to navigate around the host city to ensure an efficient start to the big weekend before he or she even arrives.  

Networking

A big benefit of any event is networking opportunities and attendee not only knows this fact, but are thankful a mobile app makes life so much easier. Contact information for speakers and other attendees--searchable by name, company, or other categories--is available in the app with bookmarking and emails may even be sent directly in the app. Integration with social media networks like LinkedIn and Facebook also enable the attendee to quickly connect with colleagues.

The built-in city guide and notepad gives attendees a chance to suggest meeting spots during down time and take notes reminding him or her of the meeting time and topics to discuss. With a built-in directory of contacts and communication tools all available in the app, attendees are able to efficiently network via one go-to resource. User authentication or alternative distribution methods in the app store give attendees peace of mind his or her own contact information isn’t available to the general public.

Attending Sessions

Prioritizing sessions at an event and soaking up large amounts of information are constant struggles for the attendee in years past and represent a common concern amongst most people challenged to attend countless sessions in a weekend, network, and find time for sleep in the process. Luckily, a mobile event app already downloaded on the attendee’s device not only provides pertinent session information like room locations, times, and descriptions--all sorted into days and categories with calendar integration--but also provides supplementary content like PDF presentations and abstracts to follow along with speakers. A notepad enables attendees to quickly take notes on a session and even tag the note with session details with the tap of a button, while the built-in facility maps and calendar reminders ensure attendees make it to the room well in advance to network, get seated, and absorb important information. After the event is over, attendees may rate sessions and individual speakers to help event organizers improve the event in subsequent years.

Navigating the Exhibit Hall

Exhibit halls are often mazes of vendors; packed with other attendees competing for space and exhibitors vying for the time of those they deem important. Attendees with a mobile event app come armed with an interactive exhibitor map featuring the ability to bookmark and mark individual booths as visited, which are then logged and color coded. Determining important booths in advance and checking off vendors throughout the day, attendee can devise a gameplan and efficiently uses available time. By tapping on an exhibitor, contact and company information is highlighted, along with the ability to contact the company directly in the app without the need to even type in an email address. Managing a gameplan for large exhibit halls and sending out follow-up emails immediately after visiting a vendor has never been easier.

After the Event

Getting the most out of a conference or meeting doesn’t end the last day of the event. Attendees are able to review PDF documents, notes, and stay in touch with the host organization via social media--all within the app. Post-event surveys help planners and organizers improve the event and often host organizations expand the app to a year-round tool providing industry news and updates. Receive information about next year’s registration and utilize the built-in attendee and speaker directories as full-time tools for networking, lead generation, and more. In a sense, the event app becomes an all-important resource 12-months out of the year for everything related to the host organization and overall industry.

For more information on the many benefits a mobile event app provides attendees and to speak with an AppBurst representative: