When hundreds of thousands of people attend a single conference, it only seems logical to create a mobile app for the event. South by Southwest launches a new app each year that includes everything from the schedule to features like beacon technology, which allows users to see what’s happening around them at any given moment.
While your app may not be alerting guests of Chelsea Clinton’s talk and Justin Bieber’s pop-up show, event apps are still very useful in informing and engaging attendees.
Here are five ways to increase your event app download rate:
1) Accessibility: Guests should know about the free app and its benefits before the actual event. Include a download link in the invitation and send reminders that encourage your guests to download the app.
2) Set Goals: Not all events need a mobile app. If you’re hosting a 20-person lunch and learn, you most likely won’t need an app. If you are hosting a 500-person conference twice a year, you may want an app for that. However, the app shouldn’t just be a place for guests to see the schedule — printing brochures is much cheaper than creating a mobile app. In other words, apps are expensive to build and your goals need to outline exactly why it’s a good investment. If each attendee is a current client then your goal should be to create an app that makes their experience as enjoyable and beneficial as possible.
3) Consistency: Much like your website, the event app should have consistent messaging and branding. If you are operating a software company whose brand is white and blue with very technical language, don’t create a trendy neon app.
4) Incentivize: If attendees can get all the information on your website then what’s the point of downloading the app on their phone? Incentivize downloads by offering special benefits to app users. For example, post key speakers on your site but tell guests to download the app to see the full lineup, host an in-app raffle, send special discounts, publish photos or show sneak peeks before the event.
5) Customer Support: Unless your event is at the Genius Bar, some of your guests may need assistance with downloading and navigating the app. Be sure to have an onboarding specialist on-hand to assist any attendees who have questions about the app.