Event management software can be a fantastic tool for event planners – helping them to manage more successful, efficient events. But there are other benefits, other than the time and cost savings; delegates will often benefit directly from attending events that are managed using event software.
Website Integration: Event management software lets you publicise and promote your event on your own website. With 8 out of 10 people researching events online, it’s vital that prospect delegates can find information they need on websites. When the solution is integrated into the corporate website, it means that information regarding the event can be promoted with the same ‘look and feel’ and on the same domain, providing a sense of trust to the delegate.
Online Registration: Once the prospect delegate has found an event on the Internet, giving them the ability to register online is a great benefit. People are increasingly used to being able to carry out activities and transactions online and letting them register there and then is not only convenient for delegates, but will also increase registration rates.
Letting delegates register online also reduces errors with regards to delegate details – things like name, address and contact information are more likely to be entered correctly if provided by the delegate themselves. This reduces problems later on down the line.
Online Payment: As the UK Office for National Statistics (ONS) stated in July 2010: “E-commerce is having a huge impact on the way we do business. It can lead to dramatic growth in trade, increase markets, improve efficiency and effectiveness and can transform business processes.” So the benefits of taking online payments is clear – both to the event holders and the delegates. For delegates, paying online is a fast and easy way to secure their position at the event. Event software offers a facility which allows delegates to choose their preferred method of payment using a variety of leading online payment engines, such as’ Worldpay, Protix, Google pay, Paypal etc, via a secure website. Using event software will also provide a level of trust to delegates, as it will not record or retain any sensitive payment details.
For the event manager, taking payments online reduces paper work and helps to improve cash flow. It eliminates any late payments and reduces admin as invoices and other documents do not need to be manually created and sent out. After taking payment online, the software can automatically update the finance system and issue a receipt to the delegate.
Improved Communication: Event software will come with various methods of communication that event planners can use to contact delegates. At the point of registration, delegates can select the method that they would most prefer to be contacted by; email, post, telephone, SMS, social media etc. Good quality event management software solutions will come with fully integrated communication tools to enable a variety of options to be used:
- Email: Integrated email tools means that event managers can send out targeted emails to specific groups of delegates. These email tools let event managers split delegates into groups based on various criteria so that communication is as focused as possible. Full reporting tools ensure you can track email opens, click and overall success rate
- SMS: Planners can use their event management software to send out text messages to delegates, easily and efficiently. If this is the chosen method of communication of delegates, this can be managed and tracked with ease via the software
- Social Media: Event software can be integrated with a host of social media networks. Managing your Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn account from one central platform makes it easy to communicate with delegates – keeping them instantly abreast of all event news and updates.
Fewer Errors: Managing an event with event software makes it far less likely that errors will occur on the day. Event software will include a ‘Resource Module’ or something similar that will help you track all the elements of an event – from the suppliers, delegate numbers, badge printing, presenters and more. Many of the elements that previously were manual and time consuming can be automated via the software – activities like the printing of delegate badges. Although a small part of an event, if a delegate arrives and there is no badge printed for them, it can cause issues for both the delegate and you. Having a smooth running event will increase delegate satisfaction and will result in an improved level of feedback and repeat attendance.
Supplier Management: Most events will work with suppliers at some point – whether it’s the venue, catering, transport or material production. It’s important that suppliers are managed tightly and that communication between delegates, event mangers and supplier is smooth. For example, during the registration process, delegates can state if they have any dietary requirements. Using the event software, catering suppliers can be given their own logon, giving them direct access to all delegate numbers and all their dietary requirements. Eliminating the event manger from this stage not frees up the event manger to focus on more productive tasks, but also reduces the risk of errors being made as the communication is passed down the line.
Access to Data: Event software can be hosted online, which means you can gain access to all the information regarding the event at any time and from any place (internet access required). On the day of the event, if there are any issues or problems, you can easily resolve these, since they can access all the data relating to the event.
Investing in event management software is an effective way of running professional, successful events, where both you and your delegates can benefit from improved communication and an improved event experience.