Seven Tips for Great Audio Visual Presentations at Your Next Event

Event planning needs a great time management and user exeprience feat. Every step from speakers to attendess and venue to audio needs careful planning. Lets take a look at

1. Understand your audience

Understand the size of your audience and anticipate what type of equipment you will need that will serve your audience well. Read, provide a good audio and video experience that will “wow” them and make sure your event is on their must attend list for next year. Manage your service providers thouroughly with an event app.

2. Having high quality audio

It is one of the most important aspects of your event. This means your attendees aren’t deafened by the audio feed at the front and those in the back aren’t straining to hear what your speaker is saying. Talk to your hosting provider ahead of the event and do an “audio walkthrough” of the room to make sure there is no dead air in the room.

And, if you are going to do lots of Q&A during the event make sure you have a designated person and a mobile microphone to ensure everyone in the room can hear what is being asked.

3. Sufficent time

Ensure you have sufficient bandwidth that will address the needs of and the size of your audience. If you are streaming multiple presentations during the event anticipate the number of attendees and “over estimate” usage to make sure you have sufficient bandwidth. And, remember not everyone has a provider that offers unlimited amounts of bandwidth via their personal smartphone or tablet – they are going to look to you to provide this during the event. You may use a conference app like Grupio to host the presentations and questioneers for future.

4. Keep backup

Anticipate you may have AV or bandwidth issues during your event. Make sure your facility provider can bring in more equipment if need be and your bandwidth provider can make adjustments in the bandwidth they are providing (you will be surprised how quickly some can increase bandwidth easily). Also, make sure your facility provider can easily swap out equipment that may malfunction during the event – underscore the importance of this with them verbally and/or have it referenced in your contract.

5. Keep everyone updated

Brief your speakers ahead of time and make sure they understand how important it is to speak to the virtual conference attendees – this is a critical part of your presentations. If you are filming the event – do a video tutorial with the presenter if he/she has not worked extensively with video previously and/or may not be aware of how to address a virtual audience. You can send the notifcations and updates using the mobile event app.

6. Plan in advance

Understand what your meeting or event objectives are ahead of the time. This may sound simple; but, its not. Once you know what your specific objectives are then you can figure out what kind of audio and video equipment you will need and/of (small plug) if you want to use a mobile application that may enable your attendees to “participate” virtually with minimal usage of audio or video equipment.

7. Maintian optimum length of event

If your event is being setup as a primary virtual event then don’t expect “participants” so spend eight hours in front of a computer viewing your event. Anticipate that people will spend a few minutes or an hour or two watching and engaging with your event – no one will spend eight solid hours watching your event in a continuous stream. Also, ensure your virtual reservation process is not cumbersome and one that requires participants to re-register over and over again.

Event planning is a great management task, your event planning app will be best method to master the skill. Grupio helps making the event planning easily manageble. From team managemnet to vendor management everything is in your hand with Grupio.

Leveraging Pinterest as an Event or Meeting Planner

Pinterest is one of the fastest growing social networks on the planet yes, it is a social network – it has comments, likes and “repins” which make it social. And, it’s now one of the top fifty web sites on the Internet, with millions of visitors per day.

Tips on leveraging Pinterest:

1. Optimize your profile properly

With a great and compelling description, link back to your web site, integration of your other social media accounts, set up multiple “boards” (these are collections of pins which are images or videos) that represents your brand as an Event Planner properly and don’t be afraid to show some personality with your Boards. The mobile event apps deliver the best linking between your social accounts.

2. Use your Smartphone and/or digital camera

Take images of and/or videos (keep them short less than 1-2 minutes) of attendees, short video clips of presenters, interviews of attendees and upload these to an “Event Specific” Board that you share with attendees. You can also solicit images from attendees from your conference app and share these on a Pinterest Board as well – everyone loves to be “famous” for a few minutes. Make sure you don’t share something that might embarrass an attendee later – those late night pictures at the bar may not be a great idea.

3. Share your Pins

Use images, videos and Boards across all of your social media accounts and make sure your Pinterest account (like other social media accounts) is featured via your web site, marketing materials and email signature file, And, don’t just share a Board or a Pin one time – there is nothing wrong with frequently sharing content across your social accounts, as long as you are not sharing it too frequently and you are interspersing other content as well.

4. Remember Pinterest is a social platform.

Meaning, comment on interesting Pins that you find (this also drives visibility for your account), “follow” others on Pinterest who are following you and when you repin an image make sure you “like’ it as well which underscores your implied value in your social “action” if you will. And, remember others can “see” your likes and level of social interaction and engagement on this platform – social media is very transparent and Pinterest is no different.

5. Add Pinterest’s Pin It Button

Add the pin it button to your mobile event app and website. Use your  smartphone shorcuts to makes it easy for you to share images and videos that you like via your Pinterest account. The button is free and works great via any top tier browser (IE, Firefox or Chrome) and it works with 95% of the smartphones on the market today.

6. Use live videos:

We’ve mentioned this earlier – but, important to underscore. Most use Pinterest for images and forget about videos – but, videos can be uploaded to your Pinterest account and you might even want to create a Board with nothing but video content. Ensuring your account stands out from others. Again, keep your videos short – many of your “visitors” don’t have a lot of patience and the best content is content (videos) that is engaging and that resonates with your target audience (not to sound too geeky).

Six Creative Ideas for Event and Meeting Planners to Drive Competitiveness

1) Write a blog about your experiences and share it with your target audience. Set up Google Alerts with specific Keywords that reference topics that your audience would like to hear about – use these keywords, topics and content to spark your creativity. A blog is one of the most underused social media marketing methodologies and it can be shared across all of your social media accounts including: Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn. You event planning app is the best method you can use to channel all you social media posts.

2) Subscribe to your competitor’s Newsletters and pay attention to what they are doing. You don’t want to plagiarize from them but their activities can. This should function as a means to get you motivated and/or as a source for ideas. And, don’t feel guilty about subscribing to their Newsletter, as the savvy competitors will be doing this to you!

3) Get off the grid (the internet) and take a long week-end off. This will do wonderful things for your creativity. You will be surprised at the “creative juices” that will flow as a result of your taking time off. And, if you like the outdoors (or not) get out there and spend some time refreshing your senses. The event app can will help you keep all your ideas on recorn and coordinate them with your team.

4) Follow a good number of design blogs – anyone in Event Planning needs to stay plugged in with what is occurring in the larger designer community. These can be web site design blogs or even architectural design blogs. Both of them will give you some insight with how colors, shapes and forms and function are being used and/or articulated by top tier designers. And, mix and match your selections by using US based designers and some from outside the US – you’ll get a broader set thoughts and topics.

5) Twitter is a great resource for ideas, themes occurring in the Events industry and or competitive intelligence. You can source lists of influential Event Planners easily via the public web. One can also build your own list of people and/or brands you want to Follow via Twitter just by looking at and reviewing the Followers that other Event Profs, Brands and/or organizations are Following via this vibrant social media platform. Twitter and Linkedin are the most appropriate social media platforms for promoting your conference using a confrence app.

6) Listen to your audience (customers, attendees, sponsors, speakers, etc.) by actively polling them for ideas that you can incorporate in your next event. Attendee questionnaires are not always leveraged by many Event Profs – they have a great deal of information, provided they are structured properly (what worked and what didn’t?). They must be read to be properly mined for nuggets of inspiration and creativity.

Every event has to be creatie and give you a chance to explore what people like. You can test the changes in small way before makeing a full fledged change in the event experinec. Feel free to do the changes and keep teasting the effects. Your mobile event app will help you track if people liked your changes and help stay ahead of the game.

How to Establish a Meaningful Mobile Device Management Policy for Your Event

Any and all Events should have some kind of a meaningful mobile device management policy, enabling your speakers and others to feel like they are not competing with a room full of unengaged attendees. Our recommendations include these top ten items:

Mobile Device Management Policy with you event app:

1) Let your attendees know in advance via marketing materials that you will have some kind of mobile device usage policies in place for your Event or Conference and that they will be required to support these policies (phrased diplomatically of course).

2) Discuss potential mobile device management policies for your event app with your executive management team 2-3 months in advance, enabling you to convey these via your marketing materials.

3) To enable support with your attendees, set up some kind of a charging station and check in station to motivate your attendees to check in their smartphones and tablets – this will be a daunting task for some, so be prepared for push back.

4) Make a presentation early in the event (opening bell) and talk about your focus on not disrupting the speakers and presenters – ensuring all attendees have a great experience at your conference. You are trying to garner support of course.

5) If some attendees insist on keeping their smartphones ask them to set their ringers on vibrate mode and ask them to please step out of the room prior to speaking with anyone. You can add these in the introdcustion and even add in notification during break in your event planning app.

6) Understand that some individuals will not play by the rules and if they disrupt your conference or event by insisting on using a smartphone during a speaker’s presentation gently escort them out of the room, without being offensive. But, let them know they are creating a less than positive experience for others around them.

7) If your event or conference lends itself well to smartphone usage, there is nothing wrong with integrating your attendee’s interaction with and participation in the meeting – Twitter Hashtags coupled with an IT System and Display that shows participation via Hashtags shared by the presenter can be a great way to involve your attendees in the conference.

8) You can also utilize and leverage text messages in your Event or Conference app by sharing a common account that you have set up prior to the conference.

9) Be creative at the front end of your conference via your marketing materials and as your attendees what they think your Smartphone policy and procedures should be for the event and remind them of their input at the front end of your conference to get their buy in and support for your mobile policies for your event.

Event aand conference apps are a great way of atying in touch with your atendees. It goes beyond just updating them it a method of connecting with them. Use all the features of the app to get the best out of what we spent event app cost.

Leveraging Your Event Speakers as Part of Your Marketing Mix

If you have multiple speakers at an event you need to think about how you can motivate them to promote your event and involve them in the marketing of your event. After all, it’s in their self-interest to help to promote the event and make it a success.

You may want to incorporate some specifics in the speaker contract that detail how you expect them to assist you with event marketing and event app promotion.

The specifics to leverage your promotion can include:

  • Their Tweeting about the event on a regular basis with dedicated links you provide.
  • Creating some finite number of short (30-60 second) YouTube videos that you can also promote via your social media accounts.
  • Join and contribute to discussions on your LinkedIn account on some defined reoccurring basis.
  • Promote the Event via their Blog and web site.
  • Add the Event he/she is attending to their Facebook page and inviting users to attend

You do have to be sensitive to your Speakers in terms of contractual obligations. If you are paying the speaker, he or she must disclose this contractual arrangement when/if they promote your event or conference app.

Of course another take on this relationship can built on your asking the speakers to promote the event when/if he chooses to do so. Their ongoing marketing is strictly voluntary and you will of course not make any formal requirements as part of their contract.

Motivating Speakers to Promote Your Event

One great way to motivate your speakers to promote your event is by promoting their (rather obvious) speaking at your event. But, you can take this a step further (and drive a lot of good will) by also promoting their books, ebooks, or webinars via your social media accounts, web sites and via traditional marketing processes. The event planning app will also give then exposure to your effort and maintain a mutula relationship.

Your front end marketing activities should drive reciprocal marketing from the speakers. If it doesn’t (and assuming you are not paying them) then you can of course subtly let them know some reciprocal marketing would be great!

Marketing your Events on Pinterest

Pinterest is the fourth most popular web site on the web, with hundreds of millions of visitors per month and organic growth that is the envy of any and all portals or social media platforms.

If you are an event planner you want to promote your brand and event on this high growth social media platform. Here are six marketing tips for Event Planners for effective Pinterest Marketing:

6 tips for pinterest marketing:

1) Establish a brand profile on Pinterest and complete your core information (description, corp logo and make sure you include a link back to your site and event app. Pinterest uses “pins” (images) that are collected on Boards (groups of thematically grouped pins).

2) If you are publicizing a new event created multiple boards on Pinterest that feature different aspects of your event. These can include pictures or image from the venue where you are hosting your event (you can push people to this specific Board) – be creative, you can feature any/all images that may reflect some of the amenities of the venue, rooms, exterior shots of the venue, conference rooms, restaurant, bar, etc.

3) If you have a blog that you are utilizing for marketing purposes share all of your blog images on Pinterest and label them based on the type of image. LInk your conference app to your pinterest account to make it fast. You can also use hashtags to optimize images on Pinterest just like you would utilize on Twitter. Speaking of Twitter or Facebook – make sure you cross promote your Pinterest account via Facebook and Twitter.

4) Create a Board for each event – think of these as a storyboard that you can use moving forward via all marketing processes (PR, Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn) and as you build multiple Boards which you are marketing, you are building up legacy content that will help you to drive more traffic back to your web site and that will resonate with prospective event attendees.

5) Don’t forget about videos – if you have a YouTube account make sure you share these videos on Pinterest as well. Just like image optimization (title and hashtags), optimize your videos by creating a good title for the video. The mobile event app can help you share the sam videos on multiple coount simultneously.

6) Think of Pinterest as you would any other social platform. When you generate a “like” or “follow” with your Pinterest account then reciprocate in kind, as this will drive more traffic to your Boards and web sites.

Pinterest is a great social network for any event professional and there are tens of thousands of your peers using Pinterest as a creative marketing platform. Before you get started, spend some time looking at and assessing your peers, get a white label event app, so you can get a head start on your Pinterest marketing!

What’s Social Word of Mouth and How do you Use it for Event Marketing?

Many event and meeting planners are comfortable marketing an event using print, radio, TV and/or direct mail. Most of you understand marketing concepts like reach, positioning, and key performance metrics.

But, in today’s social media driven world, leveraging “word of mouth” (or “social sharing) marketing, event app promotion can be a great way to market your next event and you want to broaden your marketing mix to include this form of marketing.

Social Sharing is Exponential Marketing

Social sharing is one of the fastest ways to market an event – you can put your event marketing on steroids by incorporating some kind of viral element that lets one consumer share some kind of promotion that has value for the person it is being shared with. We should point out this type of marketing works best for events that are consumer focused and not B2B (business to business).

Facebook or Twitter are great platforms for social sharing or “word of mouth” marketing – it’s estimated each consumer on Facebook has an average of 178 friends he or she is connected with. If your mobile event app is “horizontal in nature” (that is appealing to a broad marketing mix) and you can get one person on Facebook to share the event or forward it to their friends you can understand how powerful this form of marketing can be for your event.

Think of Individuals as Potential Marketing Influencers

You want to think about individuals as a potential source of marketing influence and you can consider your past conference attendees as a marketing channel. They’ve already been exposed to your brand and provided the experience was positive, will be receptive to your marketing.

If you can identify key influencers or connectors (those with a lot of Followers or Friends via social media) and motivate them to promote your event planning app and you can turbocharge your marketing.

These key influencers are almost always busy, especially in today’s hyper connected world. So, you have to think of a marketing method that will give them some incentive to be receptive to your inbound marketing message to them and that will have some value component that motivates them to share this with their social connections (Friends, Followers, etc.).

You can motivate these individuals by offering something of value to them. This can be a discount on a conference that is targeted for them individually or in some way that helps them to promote the event within their company or circle of social connections.

Leveraging word of mouth and/or influencer marketing can be quite powerful through your conference app, when you are marketing an event for a specific demographic and can be much lower cost than traditional marketing and should be added to your marketing mix!

How Event Planners Can use Social Media for Event Promotion

Social media is now one of the dominant marketing methods for just about every type of business imaginable. As an event or meeting planner, you should be utilizing Twitter, Facebook, YouTube and LinkedIn to promote your next event.

Social Media is not free – it requires time to set up social media profiles and to promote them. You have to understand your targeted demographics. Your event app must be designed around thes ability to integrate with social media. The optimum platform to reach them and don’t forget about email marketing. You can utilize social media to connect with targeted followers and then offer a promotion to capture their email address, which can then be used for downstream marketing.

Six Tips for Event Planners to Leverage Social Media

1) Generate a Following on the right platform

Recognize Twitter, LinkedIn and Facebook have different features and capabilities for generating connections and then marketing to them. Build a following on the right platform and recognize this will not happen over night and that you have to engage with these Followers and carefully add event promotion to your “conversation” with your Followers.Stay in touch with your followers and give them option to interact through your mobile conference app.

2) Sending the right message

Be aware sharing your personal and political views via Social Networks is not a good idea for a business – you risk turning off some of your Followers and you should avoid sensitive topics, which can alienate some individuals.

3) Avoid noise

If you are using Facebook for a promotion be aware this typically involves using a third party application and you need to have a strong grasp of Facebook’s targeting methodologies. And, be aware, in some cases (B2B marketing) Facebook may be the wrong platform and you will be much better off using LinkedIn as your social media platform.

4) Follow the trend:

Leverage and take a hard look at promotions that have been done by your direct competitors. We aren’t advocating plagiarism by any means; but it’s important to understand. Know what is being done in your market in terms of ongoing social media marketing activities. And, don’t assume these promotions done by your competitors are valid and work. Some of them may know less about social media marketing for events that you or your organization. Take a hard look at their followers and connections. Use your event planning app to stay on top of trend.

5) Learn from mistake

Understand that you may have some trial and error with social media marketing processes. Not all promotions will work right from the start. You be prepared to spend small portion of your overall marketing budget on a test promotion and measure your marketing ROI. It’s important to test and retest.

6) Explore opportunites

If possible integrate your Social Media Accounts with your mobile event app – this will save you time and leverage your investment with the Mobile App. Not all vendors offer integration with Social Media; and, if you are just learning how to use social media you may not need to do this early on.

Social media offers a wonderful way to market your brand and/or event. But, it’s not a one size fits all marketing and it will take time to build up a following and you need to carefully select the right platform.

Mobile Event Apps Features and Red Flags to avoid at all Costs!

There are a huge array of features and functions available via Mobile App Vendors. Some of them are useful and some are not – here is a quick snapshot of features and functions Event, Meeting and Conference Planners should look for and be aware of.

5 event app features you must know:

Most mobile phone users are graphically driven

Think of the millions of images uploaded to Facebook via smartphones as an example – maps are a great way to get your smartphone user engaged with your event. Where is the venue, how do they get there, what are restaurants close by, etc. So, make sure you have mapping capabilities built into your Mobile App.

Your schedule will be the most important and heavily used are of your mobile app

The most popular feature of any mobile event app is going to be the schedule. Your attendees will be using this feature on an ongoing basis. Some will of course check it frequently – if you can integrate advertising or promotions within this area of your app, this can be a great way to generate incremental revenue.

Lead capture is of course critical to the success of your event

Think about integrating QR Code scanning and exhibitor lead reports. Also, you may want to integrate exhibitor profiles and even attendee profiles, coupled with search functionality, which will save time for your attendees.

If you want to generate incremental revenue via your event

Make sure your mobile app vendor offers banner app integration which third parties can sponsor.

Make sure the mobile vendor that you select offers an app that is cross-platform

Your attendees will use a variety of smartphones and devices (Android, iPhone, Blackberry) and you want to be able to reach all of them, regardless of the type of device they are using. And, make sure the mobile conference app vendor has deployed their app in a wide variety of event environments.

Mobile Apps Enable Event Planners to Engage and Connect with their Attendees

Approximately 80-90% of the population within the U.S. is utilizing mobile phones to communicate, surf the web, use social media, using maps to find restaurants and much more. You can no longer ignore today’s mobile phone user if you are an Event, Meeting or Conference Planner! Mobile users are in general sophisticated, tech savvy and are drawn to events that let them leverage their mobile phones through an event app.

Here are ten ways to leverage Mobile Phone Apps for your Event:

1) Integrate your corp logo to drive strong brand awareness.

2) Use the Mobile App as a revenue generator by charging your sponsors, speakers and vendors to have a presence within the Mobile App and of course to leverage fixed costs for marketing materials and distribution of same.

3) Let you vendors and sponsors connect directly with your attendees and generate leads in real time.

4) Use a Mobile conferenc App to engage with your attendees and to connect leads for your organization, which can even be leveraged during the event by offering special promotions and break out events (that generate incremental revenue).

5) Reduce your carbon footprint and be certified as a “green” organization.

6) Boost and keep track of event attendance using Mobile Apps – offer a special promotion right within the app to drive revenue, connectivity with a vendor and/or a breakout event within your conference.

7) Leverage the Mobile event App to enable your Attendees to download content digitally, which saves significant marketing costs.

8) Integrate speaker’s bios and backgrounders within the Mobile App and your Event Schedule and offer special deals or promotions within the app for your Attendees.

9) Use a Mobile App to stay connected with the attendees after the event – once they have registered and downloaded the app use this information to send them emails that can be used to garner information to improve your next event via a survey and/or a permission email that asks them if you can continue to connect with them.

10) Integrate Social Media Apps (Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest) and or processes within your Mobile Application, depending upon the features offered by your mobile app vendor. Ask them for event app gamification to further enhance your promotion efforts. In some cases you may not need this level of functionality or capability if this is your first Mobile App enabled event. In most cases it’s better to utilize a crawl, walk, and run strategy for mobilizing an event. Don’t bight off more than you can chew and/or easily integrate with your Event.