Pain points. Every event planner has them, especially when it comes to technology implementation and its effectiveness with engagement and increasing event ROI. And with so many technologies to choose from to tackle pain points during the event planning process and while onsite, digging deep to find the right solutions can be an overwhelming process.
A recent etouches survey has done just that. We surveyed 239 event and meeting planners from around the globe to find out the most common pain points in the industry. Sure enough, they varied throughout the event lifecycle, region and job title, but with just about every issue cited, we found that finding the right technology or software solution is the key to solving it.
Here are some of the most common pain points from our survey participants, event planners from North America, Europe and Asia-Pacific regions, as well as some solutions to consider:
Pre-event planning is largely focused on maintaining or increasing attendee numbers and therefore, increasing potential revenue. This is why the registration process needs to be as smooth and efficient as possible. So it’s concerning to hear that half of event planners say that managing attendee registration is one of their top pre-event pain points. On top of that, even more event planners, 56%, say that targeting the right people with the right event content is another common struggle.
In these cases, finding an event software platform that can not only automate the registration process, but can also collect valuable attendee data while doing so is something to consider.
When attendees register for your event, it’s no secret that they want an online process that is quick, easy and error-free. But make sure it has the same qualities behind the scenes. Look for features that offer form customization, template building and automatic reports – anything to make the management process seamless for you and your staff.
These features, especially customization and reports, also give you the opportunity to understand your attendees better. If you are one of the event planners out there struggling to pick the best engaging event content, then add content-related questions to your registration form. Tracking what professional titles, age groups and other important demographics are attending your event can also help you analyze what content may be more appealing for your audience.
The onsite experience, especially for new attendees, is the place to make a good impression and having the right technology only enhances that. While onsite, our survey respondents said communication with attendees (44%) and registration & check-in (42%) were their main pain points. These problem areas can be addressed in many ways, but efficiency and ease of use are key.
A technology solution that immediately comes to mind for increasing communication is an event mobile app. But while that seems like a no-brainer, would you believe not even half (47%) of our respondents say they have a mobile app for their events? Price and putting in the time to create and manage apps were the main reasons why most event planners haven’t added one.
Having a mobile event app is invaluable. Not only does it act as a convenient place for attendees to get all of their information, but it can also be the place to receive the latest updates or schedule changes through push notifications and alerts. Just about everyone has a smartphone these days, so why not take advantage of that to increase attendee communication. Along with kiosks, attendees can use an event mobile app to access self-service check-in, alleviating long lines and freeing up staff members’ time at the onsite registration desk.
So while mobile event apps may be expensive or time consuming, a key takeaway from this is finding technology that kills two birds with one stone or has the potential to solve multiple pain points. Not only will it benefit the attendee experience onsite, but it can also save you money and headaches in the long run.
Not surprisingly, attendee satisfaction was the top indicator for event success, according to our survey respondents. After all, attendee satisfaction is what keeps them coming back year after year and allows your event to grow.
If you’re not already, measuring attendee satisfaction can be as easy as sending out surveys, but that often only touches the surface. An attendee may say they liked or didn’t liked something at your event, but what does that really mean? What about it can you change to increase attendee satisfaction in the future?
The good news is that a majority of event planners say they are using event management software and are measuring event ROI, at 66% and 65% respectively. By using these tools, event planners can dig deeper into attendee satisfaction specifics and how to change them.
However, one area that event planners seem to be ignoring that can contribute to attendee happiness is the venue. Just 20% say they use a solution to source the right location and venue for their events. Attendees want to go to events that not only engage them, but are also exciting and enhance their experience, whether it’s being close to local attractions, is affordable or can handle your event size. If you find that your attendees are not connecting with or particularly enjoying your venue, don’t neglect their feedback and find a venue sourcing tool that can find something more suited to your audience, therefore increasing attendee satisfaction.
Overall, as event planners, it’s good to give yourself and your event a checkup from time to time. Along with taking the time to diagnose your specific pain points no matter where they are in the event lifecycle, make sure you do your research to find the perfect solutions to your event’s unique needs.
The perfect technology tool is out there, and once you find it your events will be healthier in the long run.
Stay tuned for our complete Event Checkup Guide coming this fall.
Written by: Lauren Williams