Choosing the Best Management Mobile Event App

Choosing the Best Management Mobile Event App

5 min read

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Technology is becoming increasingly important to the events industry, which can make choosing the best management mobile event app a little tricky. 


Considered the “preferred shortcut to the world wide web,” according to Review 42, it’s not surprising that 50% of all internet traffic from 2018 forward came from mobile apps. Once upon a time, mobile event apps were “nice to have.” 


Now, they are practically non-negotiable because they have proven to be game-changing to event planners — and the industry as a whole. In fact, Prism recently featured research demonstrating that 35% of event planners cited event technology as having revolutionized the industry. 


This is partly due to the fact that there are currently 2.7 billion smartphone users, and 90% of their total mobile time is spent on apps, as listed on Review 42’s App Usage Statistics to Know in 2022. 


Your event attendees are already on their phones and engaging with other mobile apps, whether to check their bank accounts, track their productivity, count the number of steps they’ve logged, or just play a game. This is your opportunity to seize the moment and connect with them via the right mobile event app. 


Of course, that begs the question… 


What makes the right mobile event app?


With plenty of competition in the market, it can help narrow your choices by understanding what features to look for in a mobile app. We’re talking about those features that really help you level up your game and make your events more engaging and memorable than ever before. 


Ultimately, you want to choose a mobile event app that will drive attendee engagement with less effort on your part.


Of course, as the events industry continues to bridge the competing interests of in-person and remote attendance, your mobile event app needs to have unparalleled hybrid capabilities


Relying on a mobile event app that fails to adequately address the unique needs of those attendees who wish to participate in person, as well as those who feel more comfortable staying remote, will only undermine your initiative. 


Join us as we delve into how to evaluate mobile event apps and find the one that has the right features to support your event management efforts. 

Mobile event app: Features to focus on

When you’re trying to evaluate a mobile event app, it’s easy to get overwhelmed by factors like price, functionality, accessibility, and whether or not you’ll actually use all of the tools within the app’s suite. 


Fun fact: if your mobile event app is lacking in a particular feature or two, research from Apptentive shows you’re 96% more likely to never use it


Given the price of some mobile event apps, you don’t want to find yourself in this position. Consider this akin to paying for a gym membership and only showing up every so often… if at all. No judgment. We get it, we’ve been there.


Similarly, most event planners understand the struggle of finding the right mobile event app because they’re wrestling with the ability to take advantage of this unique technology while avoiding being overwhelmed by it. 


Association Forum illustrates this struggle by explaining, “As with most technology for associations, event apps represent a challenge and an opportunity to expand services and value to members and sponsors.” 


The trick is to isolate what really matters to your attendees, sponsors, exhibitors, and YOU, the one actually tasked with managing all of the event’s details. 


Let’s take a look at the pain points for each audience, starting with attendees. 

Why mobile event apps matter to attendees

The world has felt pretty disconnected these past few years, which has left many people eager for connection. 


Whether your attendees are comfortable showing up in person or prefer to remain hybrid, we’re confident that all are anxious to connect with colleagues, industry leaders, and compelling sponsors in order to re-energize their professional goals. 


In light of this reality, your mobile event app should offer compelling ways for attendees to connect, engage, and interact with each other easily and in real-time. 


Speaking of real-time, ideally your app should provide real time updates and metrics about the event because these provide a consistent connection between all parties: planners, speakers, sponsors, and attendees.


Your mobile event app should support your attendees and make life at your event that much easier to navigate. 


It should also allow for easy access to the event via registration, interactive venue maps, badge scanning, and the ability for attendees to create their own personalized agenda. 


So, when shopping for mobile event apps, narrow your choices down to those that include features like:


  • Mobile app customization — this allows attendees to customize the app, depending on the content they are most interested in at your event.
  • Personalized agenda and session schedule — simply put, this feature allows easy access to all event content
  • Profile and meeting attributes — consider this the key to seamless and smooth networking, with attendees able to view each other’s schedules in order to avoid busy times, schedule individual meetings, and even book a space, whether a table or virtual meeting room
  • Interactive maps — think of Google maps or Waze to a driver headed to an unfamiliar destination. This feature assists attendees as they move about your event. 

Finding a meaningful mobile event app for sponsors/exhibitors 

Returning for a moment to the topic of connection — your sponsors and exhibitors want to connect with your attendees. In fact, they need to in order to make the event worthwhile. 


Sponsors and exhibitors carefully choose which events they attend based on their projected ROI. Providing them with the right mobile event app will help them realize more bang for their buck. 


While real-time communication, app customization, and interactive trade show maps still matter to sponsors and exhibitors, you really want to isolate those mobile event apps that include additional features to help drive ROI, such as:


  • Real-time exhibitor metrics — consider this a performance report that allows exhibitors to adjust their efforts, based on real-time data
  • Lead retrieval — scan, connect, and capture leads in a more effective way than the old school business card exchange
  • Sponsored push notifications — communicate with attendee directly, whether on an individual or group basis, including sponsor promotions
  • Brand recognition — showcase your sponsors within the app, whether on banner ads or within other shared or downloadable content
  • Featured demos and sessions — use the mobile event app to call attention to specific sessions and demonstrations hosted by certain sponsors/exhibitors

Mobile event apps to empower event planners

While event attendees are looking for connection, and sponsors or exhibitors are interested in ROI, today’s event planners vet mobile apps for their ability to increase engagement. 


Eventsforce recently published research demonstrating that 81% of event planners consider driving attendee engagement as their top priority and purpose for selecting a mobile event app. 


With that singular, yet complex focus in mind, we suggest you look for a mobile event app that is able to effectively engage attendees, sponsors, and exhibitors before, during, and after your event. 


A comprehensive approach to engagement will leave a lasting impression with all involved, maintaining connections between participants and potentially boosting ROI even after the event is over. 


In order to embrace this approach, your mobile event app should offer an end-to-end solution and include supportive features like: 


  • A quick and easy setup
  • Ability to distribute email and push notifications
  • Accessible and intuitive dashboard
  • Customization that is both quick and simple
  • Easy registration, whether online or onsite
  • Meaningful metrics
  • Real-time updates
  • Solid security and reliability


Assessing mobile event apps takes some time, but you can streamline the process and create a more precise picture of what you really need from this app by prioritizing engagement and hybrid capabilities. 


Ready to learn how Pathable’s flexible, easy-to-use event platform and mobile event app can deliver education, networking, and a trade show experience for your attendees, whether they’re attending in-person or virtually?