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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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Should Your Association Consider Using an Event App?

Posted by Callie Walker


It seems that associations are hosting more events than ever to increase member engagement. And since that trend is showing no sign of slowing down, it begs the question, should your association consider using an event app? 

Sure, mobile apps are great, but they’re also very expensive. So before you drop thousands of dollars on an event app for your organization, ask yourself these three important questions:

1. Is your event big enough?

Ultimately, your event app should help visitors do things they couldn’t otherwise do. If you’re hosting an event that’s fairly small, you probably don’t need an app outlining the itinerary or mapping out the event space. However, if you’re hosting a large conference with thousands of attendees, perhaps you want an app to help people register for sessions and navigate the tradeshow floor.

2. Is your audience ready?

It’s easy to get wrapped up in smartphone adoption stats, but at the end of the day, it’s your audience that’s going to have to use it. So before purchasing an event app, take some time to think about your members. Do most of them have smartphones? Do you think they’ll embrace the concept? If not, it’s perfectly fine to forgo the event app route, even if other associations might be pursuing it. 

3. What value does it offer?

Before you call an app provider and ask to purchase an event app, be prepared to answer the question, “Why?” Remember, just because there’s an app for everything doesn’t mean there should be. Are you trying to improve networking opportunities or connect people on the tradeshow floor? Whatever it is, make sure an app is really what’s needed to accomplish that goal.

Want more tips for engaging your membership? Check out our free member engagement guide below! 

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Topics: association management, member engagement, Small Staff Chatter

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