Event mobile apps in 2015. Three key predictions

Posted on January 7, 2015

Event apps, be it for conferences, trade shows or corporate events, are here to stay. Numerous reports have so far pointed out that the organizers are satisfied not only with the ROI, but also the level of attendee engagement that event apps generate. It is inevitable that mobile help will prevail in 2015 as well. The question is, what direction are we going to head after getting traction in the event industry?

The death of paper guides is not everything

2014 was in many ways ground-breaking for many app suppliers (Confrenz included). Eventually, the majority of event organizers got convinced that reliance only on paper guides, business cards and websites is inefficient, costly and inconvenient for attendees. This led to a wide adoption of event apps, BLE iBeacons, and other refreshing techologies. Consequently, in 2014 organizers started vocalizing their demands for future events and there was lots of meaningful traction on the supplier-client chain. All this has made it possible for event app companies to make some predictions about what’s in store for us in 2015. Here’s a handful of directions in which event apps will possibly go, arising from what we have seen ourselves and have been told by the other side.

1. Automate!

Attendees yearn for more automation and facilitation of both information flow and business efficiency at events. While the former got pretty much dealt with thanks to real-time changes apps typically enable, the latter has still been unresolved. Even though the iBeacons are making headway, and so is RFID, there’s much to do in this area. The same goes for wearables – all the new tech is predicted to get adopted more widely that it has been till now.

Event apps need to make it more convenient and transparent for all parties (visitors, exhibitors, organizers, sponsors) to help gather loads of data available, make it easy-to-use for meeting and business card exchange, as well as provide analytics. We have pointed out before that this is indeed a longing of many event profs and we are convinced this needs to be adjusted in the upcoming months. It seems that 2015 is probably the year in which event apps will become part of the immense system serving to enhance the experience of all the people involved.

2. Update me, please

The apps in 2015 will be required not for one-time use, but for the whole year round. The attendees, often times registered members of a given organization, request to be in-the-loop outside the event. An ‘event’ app is likely to become the main marketing and communication channel that serves to connect and engage your well-defined audience. This is an ideal way to provide content, make updates and drive interest throughout the year. This area, although quite widely  acknowledged, has yet to be fully and efficiently used.

3. Let me interact

Even though a whole lot of event attendees still check an event app primarily for information, there’s a massive interest now emerging in interactive features. In particular, live sessions-enhancing techniques are requested more and more often by the organizers. The session goers love the option to participate in live votings during sessions with results projected immediately on screens. This is also the case with Q&As, which can now be accessed from devices, shown on screens and discussed both out loud and on mobile. At Confrenz, our clients get all this information recorded after the event, so they can act on it in the future.
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