A new research study has found that engaging attendees is the top reason 81% of organisations are using event apps, but difficulties in measuring ROI, low adoption rates and the complexity of launching apps are still limiting efforts.
The study by Eventsforce also found that despite a 50-75% attendee adoption rate for most event apps, 67% of organisers don’t see any value in using apps once the event is over.
The findings of ‘The ROI of Event Apps’ study are based on responses from over 190 event professionals in the US and the UK, and represent corporates, associations, government, PCOs and event management agencies.
George Sirius, CEO of Eventsforce, commented: “The popularity around event apps has evolved so much over the last few years. Most people attending events these days expect an app and it seems most event planners want one too.
“Our research, however, shows that despite attendee engagement being the driving force behind event apps, only 20% are enjoying adoption rates of 75% or more. It also shows that a large majority are still finding the management of apps an issue.”
Current uptake of event apps
The ‘ROI of Event Apps’ study found that 57% of organisers surveyed are using event apps, with the majority (45%) focusing on larger events that gather more than 300 attendees.
When investigating the reasons for not using apps, 35% stated that apps were too expensive, while others were discouraged by the time and effort it takes to launch one. Other barriers include lack of management buy-in (26%) and difficulties in justifying the value apps bring to their organisations (16%).
Nearly half of those surveyed found that creating and launching apps takes up a lot of time. Low adoption rates is also a problem for 42% of organisers, as well as issues in measuring results (39%) and managing data transfers between systems (37%). When asked how they measure the ROI of their apps, adoption rates, feedback from surveys and in-app engagement stats (ex. page views and poll stats) were the top performance metrics used by most organisations.
Sirius added: “Apps bring value to events only when they successfully connect attendees to the right content and right people at the right time. To do this effectively, organisers need to make sure that the information attendees see on apps is always accurate and up-to-date.
“Our research, however, shows that data transfers between apps and event management systems is a problem for more than 1 in 3 organisations. Dealing with one fully integrated platform for registrations, sessions and apps not only eliminates this problem, but can also help boost adoption rates. It will also give organisers a clearer picture on all their event data.”