How to Choose the Best Event App

So you’re interested in choosing a mobile app platform for your event?

Navigating the event technology space can be time-consuming, and without the proper resources, overwhelming. If you’re feeling this, you are not alone, Forbes has ranked event coordinator among the most stressful jobs in the United States for a number of years, consecutively. Further, 74% of event planners use event technology from multiple providers, according to Event Manager Blog. We know the technology you choose has a big impact on the success of your events.

There’s a lot to consider and we know your time is limited – that’s why we laid it out simply, so you can get set up with the best event app – one that’s tailored to your organization and your event.

Phase I – Research and Discovery

Step 1 – Detail the needs of your event

New to mobile apps?

Begin by outlining your event details, including type, size, and venue. Think about your audience as well. Identify the weaknesses and strengths from past events – what went well, where do you see areas for improvement?

Replacing an existing mobile app?

If you’re looking to make an upgrade, you are likely familiar with general offerings from mobile app technology. Identify the issues or lack of features you are experiencing with your current provider and seek these out in a new platform.

Step 2 – Set A Budget And Pricing Model

Prices will vary from provider to provider and before reaching out it is important to define a budget. In addition to factoring in the upfront costs, you should think about what pricing model makes sense for your event. Consider available pricing models such as a one-time flat fee, pricing per user, or an ongoing subscription. Remember, you want the pricing to be simple and straightforward.

We know pricing is important, which is why Guidebook, offers pricing options for events large and small.  Learn more about our pricing here

Step 3 – Research Roundup

With an understanding of your needs, you can efficiently pare down your mobile app options. Conduct an online search, speak with business owners in your industry, and read review sites. Review sites like Capterra and TrustPilot are informative and credible resources to help guide your research.

Want more tips on conducting research? Check out our post on the top event apps, What are the best event apps out there? for additional considerations. 

Step 4 – Test Drive the App

It is important to see the app platform and examples in action with a demo. Not only can you get a better idea about the features, you’ll also see the product up and running. Take note of usability, your choice should be intuitive and easy to use. Optimize your demo experience by asking the product expert all of the lingering questions that may have gone unanswered while conducting your research.

Step 5 – Branding and Customization

Your app is a representation of your event and your organization, naturally, you want a cohesive look and feel with the rest of your branding. Consider, when you look at the app, is it visually appealing? Is navigation of the app self-evident? And can you truly brand the app to your own specifications?

We find that users prefer a clean, simple and modern style when using an event app. The best event app is the one whose backend builder is easy to use, but also the app itself is easy to navigate for the end-user.

Want to learn more about our branding options? Check out an overview of our branding tools here. 

Step 6 – Customer Service

Before signing the deal, the last step is to ensure that your mobile app provider has excellent customer service that works for you on your time. You could require support’s assistance at any time, so ensure that the support team is available when you need it. Do you prefer to interact with customer service over email or on the phone or do would you rather follow detailed training articles? These are important questions to ask.

Once you’ve narrowed down the choices and have found a provider that ticks off all of the boxes, move on to the decision making phase.

Phase II – Making Your Decision

Step 7 – Sign The Deal

Congrats you’re going mobile at your next event!

It doesn’t stop here. After working through the decision phase, it’s time to prep and put your app to use.

Phase III – Post Decision

Step 8 – Building Your App

The app you choose should be intuitive to build. Guidebook, for example, empowers users to drag-and-drop app components to customize an app with tailored features and branding. Utilize support resources to set up your mobile app and ensure it is tailored exactly to your event’s needs.

Step 9 – Train Your Staff

Your team should be up to speed about your mobile app ahead of your event. This is a great opportunity to share details and let your staff demo the app. Should attendees have questions like: Where’s the schedule? How do I connect with other attendees?  Your team can quickly help attendees navigate through your app.

This is especially important if you’re using on-site tools like Session Verification. Your team should be knowledgeable and confident using the app during the event.

Step 10 – Adopting Your App

Now’s the fun part, once your app has been created, your team up to speed, and the big day ahead of you – it’s time to start thinking about app promotion.

An app cannot be the best app if your attendees don’t know about it. You should promote your app in the weeks leading up to your event through email and other digital platforms. If you choose Guidebook, we’ve got built-in tools to make promotion easy.