apps for businessesWithout a doubt, mobile technology is a booming industry. In fact, Gartner predicts by the end of 2018, more than 50 percent of business professionals will use their tablet or smartphone first for all online activities.

Although mobile technology can certainly be a distraction (attendees checking email or social media, taking a call or surfing the Web), why not turn that distraction into something more …  such as a meeting engagement and feedback tool?

As there are thousands of apps available for your meeting, how do you choose the right ones? It boils down to: your own meeting metrics, how attendees prefer to receive information and how they wish to engage with the speaker, each other and you. Spend some time on this process, and everything should go according to plan.

Below are nine apps we suggest you look at to maximize attendee engagement. But before you download them to your phone, review the following items.

Four Mobile Considerations

  1. Are you going to rent technology or implement a BYOD (Bring Your Own Device) standard?
    Although there are benefits to both, you need to clearly understand what technology your attendee is bringing and what they are planning on using in the meeting. Renting technology allows everyone to participate at the same level, while BYOD requires making sure your apps run on a variety of operating systems and devices.
  2. Is the app Web- or native-based?
    Most apps are Web-based, which means the more apps utilized for your event, the more strain it can put on the venue’s Wi-Fi infrastructure. Native apps have no or little impact on bandwidth, but attendee input and results are not in real time.
  3. Will the app run on all devices?
    Without a doubt, this will be your biggest barrier to acceptance. There are some apps that only run on iOS and Android platforms, but things are looking better, as there is more pressure to be Web-responsive (intelligence within the code that adjusts appropriately to the device).
  4. What is the cost?
    Unlike social apps, most mobile apps are not free. However, you can secure an arrangement for a short period of time versus entering into an expensive yearly contract. Understand what you need and for how long. Most app providers have free trials, and I highly recommend you try before you buy any app.

Presentation Apps

  1. SlideShare
    This free app works on both platforms and is highly accepted in the professional world. Owned by LinkedIn, look for SlideShare to be tied closely to this social channel in the future.
  2. SlideShark
    This app is iOS-exclusive and runs effectively across all Apple platforms. Although it is a paid subscription, there is a 15-day trial period offered.
  3. MightyMeeting
    Available on both Androis and iOS devices, MightyMeeting allows meeting and conference presenters and leaders to share presentations with anyone via Web, Android and iOS devices in the room or online. The app also has the ability to turn one-way presentations into a real-time, collaborative experience if they choose

Polling Apps

  1. Poll Everywhere
    This free app runs on both platforms, allowing audience members and presenters to ask and respond to questions on a real-time basis and post those answers within the PowerPoint presentation. It’s great for taking a quick pulse on attendee knowledge and interest level on the subject matter.
  2. Polldaddy
    This robust online survey software runs on the iOS platform and feeds responses into a reporting system that can assist you in understanding meeting trends and interests. Polldaddy works most effectively after the meeting or conference, but while the attendees are still on the premises. It is a free app.
  3. Survey Pocket
    This app works on both platforms and allows you to create surveys anytime, anywhere. There are more than 50 question types available, and results are assessed on a real-time basis. This app is fee-based but offers a 7-day trial period.

Social Apps

  1. Twitter
    This channel has the widest acceptance among individuals 18 to 54 years old, according to data collected last year by eMarketer. Twitter can be used for polling, sharing of links and photos, and scheduling unique networking events called TweetUps. Make sure you use the event’s hashtag with all posts.
  2. Facebook
    The largest social network in the U.S. is a photo-based, conversational channel where attendees can share content about your conference online. Facebook is also becoming hashtag-driven, so be sure to include the event’s hashtag on each post. Although your Facebook Fan page is free to set up, be prepared to spend money to boost posts and gain likes for the page in order for it to be seen.
  3. YouTube
    Video is the up-and-coming method to get your message out and keep it going beyond the conference. Post frequently on your channel throughout the meeting with short video clips. Because this channel is owned by Google and is the most used channel by Gen Y & Z, generating a stream of content is key to attendee engagement and selling your conference in the future.

Kalahari Resorts & Conventions Is Here to Match All Your Meeting Needs

Small and large events are handled with total professionalism here at Kalahari Resorts. Give our experienced sales staff a call at 855.411.4605 to plan your next event with us.