The Basic Technology for a Successful User Conference is Vital

Today’s technology allows you to run a user conference with the same professionalism that users have come to expect from association events.  And make no mistake about it, users can love your products and want to be a part of your community however, if your event isn’t as good as your product, they will still love you but hesitate to come back next year.  Here is the technology needed to make your event a success.

1. Program check-in and badge printing is vital for users to feel this is a professional conference.  

The technology should be architected to deliver a smooth on-site check-in experience regardless of the event size, event budget, or traffic volume. From 20 attendees to 10,000 attendees, it’s important when checking in that your attendees:

  • Don’t have to wait in line,
  • Receive badge credentials and agendas in a professional and timely fashion,
  • Can easily walk in and register on-site, even if they did not pre-register,
  • Have an opportunity to communicate their intent and desires,
  • Only have to register once.  

Consider Validar’s vCheckin services as a solution to increasing the professionalism of the event.  

2. Event Insight: What Happened at the Event?  

Many Managers will say that if you can’t measure what happened at the event, it was just an expensive party.  This isn’t something your CFO will be open to. Measure event results.  Who attended the event, which sessions did they like or dislike?  What did they think of the speakers?  Was there something about the event that was not to their liking?  Did they attend the exhibit hall? Was the food good?   Was the entertainment fun?  Did they leave feeling this was worth their time and effort? Will they come back next year?   Why it’s important:

“If you don’t have a handle on the metrics for a user event, you spent money blindly without a hint of the ROI; this is not something marketing should do.”

Validar Event Insight is the solution for real-time and post-event metrics to measure your event performance.  Validar captures your data in a dedicated ‘Event Insight’ dashboard. Turn to Validar Event Insight for real-time and post-event metrics.


More: How Often Should You Survey Event Attendees?


Audience Segmentation.  Whether you’re pitching your service or product one-on-one or to an audience, segmentation capability gives your attendees (and you) control over how you treat them post-event. Segmenting your audience and leads based on their value to you can be of great value for creating an ROI from the event (read this as actual sales which event management gets credit for creating). For example, when you know where prospects are in the buying cycle, you drive relevant activity to your sales team and treat your leads and attendees the way they want to be treated.

  • View your attendance by defined segments
  • See which sessions drew the most attendees
  • Find out which exhibitors were most popular
  • Which products on the exhibit floor are the most popular
  • Track feedback results

Event Insight drills down to attendee specific information:

  • Who attended?
  • Where did each person go?
  • What feedback did each person provide?
  • Which sponsors did they visit?

Performance Measurement.  Measurement tools enable both event producers and vendors to gauge their performance against the intent behind the event.  At Validar we help our clients identify which metrics they want to measure, choosing tangible and measurable objectives. We identify the results they want to achieve so the data we collect is actionable; all through the event we capture data. The moment the doors close, Validar can tabulate the results; and interpret this information. Not only does Validar post-event data let you compare your goals against actual event outcomes, it enables you to act upon the information. Attendee Insight Export. Post-event is important and this information should be delivered in an actionable CSV or Excel format. Your lead management and sales teams need to have a full set of data to reach out to attendees post event in the way attendees are most likely to appreciate (read this as buy from you)  

3. Event Tickets.  

Validar’s Event Ticket is a great EventHub® extension and it speeds up the check-in process on-site while delivering a great attendee experience. With Event Ticket, attendees are granted access to your event in a paperless fashion. Simply pull an EventHub® export and send tickets via email to your registered attendee in one of three ways:

  • PK Pass File – Now attendees can add their ticket to iPhone Passbook, Android Pass Wallet or Windows Wallet.
  • EventHub® Link – Add an attendees Event Ticket to their EventHub® link.
  • Embedded QR Code Image – Allow attendees who do not have a smart phone to print off their Event Ticket as they would an airline boarding pass.

The check-in experience for your event will be the same as if you were checking in with a QR Code at the airport. Additional features available via the PK Pass file are:

  • Geo location notifications
  • Time-based notifications
  • Direct links to social media sites
  • Instant access to collateral or materials


4. Event Insight Mobile.

The mobile version of Event Insight just made event management easier. With all the capabilities of Event Insight on a mobile phone, show managers and major stakeholders can be anywhere on-site and still remain connected with real-time information. Event Insight Mobile Delivers:

  • Real-time attendee statistics - - How many people have checked in? How many pre-registered attendees are left to check in? How many attendees are walk-ins?
  • Search for attendees - - Has a specific attendee checked in, and at what time?
  • Personalized watch list - - Where are VIP attendees right now?
  • Attendee drill down - - When did they arrive? What sessions did they attend? What feedback have they submitted? What exhibitors did they visit?

From the moment of attendee check-in via Validar Onsite Registration Manager, your mobile phone will give you the actionable stats you need for a successful event! Validar Event Insight Mobile: {{image}} Event Insight Mobile, real-time check- in stats with a drill down watch list!  

5. Will you have an exhibits floor?

 An exhibits area boosts attendance and revenue, and delivers more value to the attendees.  The question is, aside from your own products, are there other vendors/suppliers in the industry who can benefit from exhibiting at your user conference?    This boosts the cost for the event, but it also provides income from $2,000 to $5,000 per ten linear feet of exhibit space.  The upper range is more likely if you have thousands of attendees.  Coordinating this part of the event, especially if the show floor is large, can demand a professional company to run it for you.  It will also require that you have a badge reading sales lead acquisition device for each of the exhibitors. Lead Retrieval   We firmly believe qualifying leads at the point of capture is vital. If you have a need to better articulate the revenue generated from your trade show investments, our vCapture suite of lead retrieval products is ideally suited to meet your needs globally. Whether your desire is to capture as many leads as possible, to take notes, or to satisfy a complex lead qualification / distribution need, we can help.  

In Conclusion

If you can check enough of the eight boxes in the first article in this series, you have a great opportunity to profit from a user conference.   Starting small is ok.  Hire outside expertise if need be, and test programs that work, but using the technology to make it a good experience for everyone is vital to the success of the user event.  If you want to learn more, go here.