In the next twelve months, you will go from a world in which a dedicated event app is an occasional occurrence to one where it is standard. Every event will have some sort of mobile solution whether it is a simple solution designed solely to lower the costs of printing handouts and event materials or a more complex solution with games, networking, social interaction, testing and even training tools built in. In the same way that a car isn’t made without a radio, an event won’t be produced that doesn’t include a mobile component.
So you’re going to need a mobile strategy. I can already hear you sigh and slouch in your chairs a little. Don’t fret. I have a simple strategy that you can use for every event. It’s a strategy that will help you succeed, no matter what kind of event you are putting together.
The strategy is simple: Execute your mobile solution flawlessly.
No matter what kind of event you are managing, no matter how tech savvy the audience, no matter the content or format, executing your mobile solution perfectly gets you much farther than an over-reaching, overly technical solution that you can’t perfect.
What do we mean by execution? In this case, we mean picking the right app, filling it with useful and relevant content in time for the event, making sure all the bells and whistles work, and that everyone can do what they need to do through the app. Execution is putting an app out for your attendees that they can use without thinking twice about it.
That’s not to say you shouldn’t pick a mobile solution that doesn’t delight and excite your attendees. You need tools that keep your audience’s focus in the room, rather than on shopping emails or Sudoku. You want attendees to feel like their time wasn’t wasted because you helped them meet new people who will become valuable contacts and business partners. You may need to train and test your attendees – paper handouts with Scranton quizzes just won’t cut it any longer. You need to pick a solution that provides you with all the functionalities you need. You just need to make sure it’s bulletproof.
Think about a massive new television set. It has millions and millions of little pixels on it that create a dazzling picture. Now imagine that one of those millions of pixels is dead. It’s not surprising: millions of things could have gone wrong and only one actually did. In any other environment, a quality rating like that would earn you high praise and a raise. But not this time. That one dead pixel completely ruins that experience. It always looks like a sleeping gnat is on the screen, distracting you from the big game or your favorite movie.
Your mobile solution is just like that TV. You could have a feature list longer than LeBron’s arms. You could employ future-facing technology that seems closer to science fiction. You could build a genius marketing campaign that results in every member of the audience using the app.
But one little failure will feel like that dead pixel on your TV screen. It will ruin everyone’s experience.
In a world where everyone has a smartphone (it seems), that one small issue will ripple across your audience incredibly quickly. It will become the discussion topic between sessions. It will be the thing that everyone remembers when they go home. It will be the thing your boss wants to talk about when you get back to the office.
The execution of your mobile solution is the new strategy. Stick to it when you pick your mobile solution. Either pick something you know you can manage 100% of the time or pick a partner who can deliver the features you want in a way that assures success.