How long should your conference app stay active?

A meeting planner posted this question on PCMA’s Forum: “I’m wondering how long your annual conference app is allowed to stay active?”

I’ve heard stories where the mobile conference app provider or client organizer turns the app off within one month following the event. If the event had a significant amount of sensitive information, that might be reason enough.

Most organizations try to build value to their members throughout the year. Leave the app live between your events, and you’ll accomplish a number of things.

Branding is Key

 

First, if your organization is trying to brand itself to its members and associates, then leave the conference app live. This way members will continually see that brand as they’re using their mobile device. A “branded app” means the organization’s name and artwork are on the icon. By having a branded app, there’s a good chance your members / attendees will leave it on their device.

Be the Resource You Said You Wanted to Be

 

Secondly, you want to be an ongoing resource year round. The event doesn’t have to end when everyone heads to the airport. A good conference mobile app will allow its users to continually access information, such as attendee and speakers lists, contacts made, notes taken, and slides downloaded. A good mobile app will be rich with useful information, and the value of having attended the conference lives on. It’s an even more important reason to leave it on the attendee’s mobile device.

At AgendaPop, we keep our clients’ apps live indefinitely (often beyond a year) until the client wants to make theirs unavailable. The “Switching Conferences” feature we deploy can be very useful — for attendees, exhibitors, sponsors, etc. to follow up with a person, a speaker, or to review a presentation from a previous conference. “Switching Conferences” lets the attendee select which previous conference they want to view.

Is leaving a meeting or conference app live important to advertisers? It depends whether you’re driving attendees back to the app intentionally.  If there was continuous usage, advertisers would surely want to see data. That’s another positive touch point between you and the advertiser for the next event sponsorship. But realistically, your app will be viewed less after the conference, but the information inside can still be valuable.

One suggestion to keep people coming back to the meeting app in between events is through the use of surveys. “Are you planning to come to our annual event next year?” is a simple and fair question to ask. Other surveys can be implemented to solicit conference programming topics, speakers, and venues. Or, how about debuting a new video through the app?