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Engaging First-Time Conference Attendees

Engaging First-Time Conference Attendees: 4 Tactics to Try

Of course you want to provide an exceptional experience for ALL of your conference attendees, but ensuring that happens for your first-time attendees is particularly important. Their decision to attend future events (and possibly even renew their membership) depends heavily on that first experience, so going the extra mile for those folks, in particular, is certainly worth it.

What does “going the extra mile” for your first-time attendees look like? Here are a few tactics worth trying:

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Conference App Promotion 101: Getting Pre-Event Downloads

Posted by Colleen Bottorff

Getting conference app downloads pre-event

The trick to getting the most out of your association’s conference app is getting downloads before the event itself starts. That way, attendees have a ton of information in advance, you can push pre-event notifications directly to their phones to get them excited, and you’ll have a quick and easy line of communication open in case of any changes.

A conference app is a tool that event attendees value, so getting downloads shouldn’t be too difficult. That being said, you have to promote it in order for attendees to know it exists! Here are few tips to get you started:

Send a strictly educational email
As soon as it’s ready, send an email to all registrants with instructions for how to download the app and how to use each feature. You may also want to include an email address they can reach out to if they’re having trouble downloading the app (you know some will!) or if they notice any issues once it’s downloaded. Be sure to send this same email periodically to new registrants as they sign up, too!

Promote it often
Weave conference app information into your existing registrants communication plan, even if it’s just a small reminder. It may take a few messages for some people to remember to download it! Consider also including some messaging about the app in your communications to those who haven’t registered yet. It will show that you’re forward thinking and want to provide them with an exceptional experience!

Try a fun giveaway
To generate some excitement about the app, try doing a giveaway early on. Encourage registrants to download the app in order to be entered to win a prize that will benefit them at the event. This could be access to a VIP conference perk, a complimentary registration to pass on to a colleague, front row seating at a highly anticipated keynote...tap into what your registrants want and get creative!

Include speakers, sponsors, and exhibitors
It’s likely that you’ll list your speakers, sponsors, and exhibitors in the app - arm them with knowledge and resources to promote the app on your behalf! They want information about their sessions, services, and booths to be distributed just as much as you do, so it’s likely they’ll be happy to help.

Walk the walk
If you want registrants downloading your app and interacting within it, make sure that your association staff is, too! Registrants will be much more likely to to participate (and get their colleagues to jump in) if they see others are already active. Pro-tip: Pre-populate the app with welcome messages that registrants will receive upon downloading for a warm welcome!

Wherever you promote it, be sure to make it as easy as possible for them to download the app by including links that go directly to it for both Android and iPhone devices!

Don’t have a conference app yet? You’re missing out on some amazing attendee value! We’ll be doing a live demo of MemberClicks’ Conference App on Thursday, July 12 at 3pm EST. Click here to register for the webinar and see what it’s all about!

Topics: MC Insider

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