So here’s the thing. For the last couple of years, the trend in the supply of technology to events has been to meet event organisers apparent need for end-to -end solutions. This trend has seen a range of long established organisations extending their offer to include visitor and other mobile apps to compliment the registration, badging and tracking already in the line up. They’ve done this by building their own or acquiring an independent mobile development company.
Makes perfect sense you’d think? On paper, of course it does, but here’s the rub. While providing an end-to-end solution from registration to the final event survey that includes mobile is a great concept the reality is, it’s very difficult for any one organisation to do all of it well. People who are great at building one sort of experience aren’t necessarily equally good at building another and the expectation of fulfilment by a sole provider is harder than it seems when put under the microscope.
For sure, as a buyer, it’s a no brainer to want one solution that ticks all the boxes. It’s also understandable that selecting and dealing with one supplier is preferable to having to deal with more. But there are different sizes and shapes of boxes and what we’re seeing now is a move back towards specialism as people’s experiments in building mobile add-ons have achieved limited traction. Many of the key players who have dipped a toe in the mobile app sea are getting out of the water at the speed of kids on a cold day at the beach as they realise that their apps are not cutting it because the end user experience is crap. Until recently, having an event app at all, of any kind, was innovative and a novelty for consumers. Now, it’s not good enough to just tick the box because those consumers know the difference between good and bad apps. They expect the best or they’ll quickly give it away.
This doesn’t remove the possibility of end-to-end solutions. It just means that the solution needs to include best of breed products. These are relatively easy to integrate meaning the buyer still only needs to have one touch point during the selection process and they can select a total package that will drive best value for their participants. So make sure your supplier is genuinely offering the best options, including the mobile components, before your ink goes anywhere near their paper.