App Highlight: Crowd Compass

CrowdCompass is an app that came to our attention a few weeks ago and we thought we’d show you some of its features. We’re not getting paid to talk about this app, we’re passing along a possible resource, hoping to make your next event better. So, here we go . . .

CrowdCompass is an event app tailored specifically for individual events. Your attendees will enjoy:

  • Interactive Maps: showing them exactly where they are, what is around them and how to get there.
  • Push Notifications: if a breakout session is moved at the last minute- you can let everyone know, right in their event app.
  • Individualized Schedules: Schedules set during registration show up with all the details on a user’s schedule within the app. Reminders can also show up to help an attendee keep appointments and remember things they don’t want to miss.
  • LinkedIn Integration: CrowdCompass uses your attendees LinkedIn profiles to fill out their photo and other profile information within the app. Now they don’t need to re-enter all of that in again!
  • Share Photos and Text To Event Feed: Users can post picture, comments, and questions on the event feed within the app.
  • Sponsor Showcase: Logos of your sponsors can be a part of the app. More exposure for them!
  • Metric City: 30 plus metrics allow you to see what your users are interested in and give you lots of information to help you improve the event in session, and in the future.

This seems like a great tool to use for larger, more complicated events. And with the interactive map feature, it would be a wonderful help to attendees if your event is scattered over a large area, or different parts of a city. Have you used an event app that was worth the time and investment? Please let us know!

Do I Need An Event App and Printable Information?

A few days ago, we posted an article on the pros and cons of having an app for your event. The only con stated was that some people (about half of Americans) don’t have smartphones, so, in result, printed out packets (or downloadable PDFs) are still a necessity. And, if the app freezes, the server goes down, or someone’s phone simply dies on their way to the conference, paper would be desired as well. Will there be any differences between the packets and the app?

First of all, everyone understands that phone apps will have more features than a few pieces of paper. Event phone apps offer multiple different details, such as electronic ways to connect with people (such as message boards and even emailing options), surveys to help the planner, and possibly links to other related sites. Printable itineraries wouldn’t have this information.

But, the printed packets, schedules, booklets, etc, should have most of the same information as the app. Event and company information, conference center information, directions, speaker and activity schedule, local transportation contact information, activities and restaurants in the area, conference and meal information, and even city news and facts should all be in the app as well as in a printable version online. Some people will rarely look at this information, but some people will live off of it for the whole weekend.

Should you offer any of this information already printed for your guests, or should they print it at home? My suggestion is to have schedules printed for your guests, but that’s it. Most people will bring a computer and many venues have a printing station, so your guests can print whatever information they want so you don’t waste time and paper.

Still confused about what to put on your website versus on the app…or on both? Poll your potential attendees to see what facts are most important to them. Your attendees happiness is a main goal of your event, so listen to their ideas.

 

The Pros And Cons Of An Event App

Having an event app could be great…for people who have smartphones. About 50% of Americans currently own smartphones, and more people own smartphones than any other type of cell phone. Most event planners (and app creator) use this as a reason to create an app. But, what’s the point of having one? Here are some pros and cons of offering this option for your next conference.

Pro: Convenient for Attendees. If your event has a phone app, attendees will be able to have all the necessary event information at their fingertips at all times. They won’t have to shuffle around 20 pieces of paper to see which building your event is in or what time their favorite speaker starts, either.

Pro: Convenient for You. Having a phone app lets you change and add information in a snap. If you offer printed information, it would be much harder, more time consuming, and more expensive to remake ever brochure or packet when a new speaker is added to the schedule, or you realized you put the wrong venue address.

Pro: Engaging. You can also use an event app to connect with your guests and help them connect with each other. Most include stats, games, surveys, an activity feed, and chat or message features so you can learn more about your attendees and they can learn more about each other.

Pro: Real Time Updates. Not only is this more convenient for you as the planner, but your attendees will love the automatic, real time updates about changes in times and places, and exciting news.

Pro: Green… With an app, all event information is in your attendees’ pockets (or purses) without the use of any paper. This means there is less paper being ordered and printed, which keeps your event a bit greener.

Con: What About People Without Smartphones? According to the statistic stated before, about 50% of Americans don’t have smartphones. So, depending on the age demographic of your event, there could be quite a few people who don’t have them. If you do create an app, just make sure you provide the the necessary information online in a printable format for those who are unable to download it (and print it themselves).

Have you ever used an event app, what do you think?