Looking for ways to improve engagement and participation at your association's events? Several technology options are available that will enhance and bring added value to your event. Below are a few options AMR association clients have implemented.
QR codes allow instant and easy access from a smartphone to a specific website. Do you have a site that you want event attendees to access? A couple of our clients recently launched online communities used QR codes to encourage participation. A QR code that linked to the community was developed and printed on the back of the event name badges. This allowed for easy scanning from a smartphone and encouraged participation. There are many ways to utilize QR codes. They can be used to link directly to mobile sites, utilized for contests, be printed on giveaways and more. This is a fun and virtually free way to enhance engagement.
For easy access why not move your event agenda, speaker information and more to a mobile site? This site can then be accessed by event attendees on their mobile devices for easy access to information during the event. We implemented this last year for a client, and found that attendees utilized it and many found it more useful than a printed program. Eventually, there will be cost savings as more printed information moves mobile.
Text Message Alerts
There are several low-cost and easy-to-use text message alert services available. When attendees register for a conference they can be given the option to “opt-in” for text message alerts. This allows event staff to have an easy method to contact all attendees in case of an emergency. At a recent conference, a water main broke near the event site. Having a text message alert mechanism would have been ideal to alert attendees to the incident and give them advice. Additionally, this service will allow staff to inform attendees regarding venue changes and “not-to-miss” sessions.
Twitterfalls are easy to implement. With Internet access, a screen and a hash tag, a twitterfall can run during or in-between event sessions. This encourages attendees to tweet and allows them instant access to conversations regarding sessions, service and more. This is an excellent way to encourage engagement at an event and keep the conversation moving.
Do you see people searching for outlets at your conferences? Why not rent a charging station that provides charges for multiple types of devices? This can be set-up in a common foyer area and seating can be provided for people that want to stay close to their devices. There are also options that provide “secure” charging. This is a value-add for attendees and makes their online access easier.
Keep in mind that many of these options are low-cost; however, these also present opportunities for sponsorship. Each provides good visibility for sponsors via the event website, mobile sites, on-site banners and more.
If your organization has additional methods for utilizing technology we would be interested in hearing your advice.