American Marketer


Rise of the enterprise mobile event app

September 26, 2014

Patrick Payne is CEO of QuickMobile Patrick Payne is CEO of QuickMobile


By Patrick Payne

Most corporate event planning teams work on a core portfolio of large-scale and higher-profile events that require immense resources. At these events, mobile event applications are becoming as commonplace as a morning coffee break.

Every year, however, the typical enterprise conducts hundreds of gatherings of varying size and purpose, from sales conferences to leadership off-sites to local team-building sessions.

Meetings up
According to Verizon’s Meetings in America white paper, employees can spend as much as 37 percent of their time in meetings. The paper also reported that 92 percent of those surveyed indicated they attend the same number or more meetings today than they did a year ago.

Now while that may seem like too much time or too many meetings, consider these other findings:

• An overwhelming majority of meeting participants (92 percent) value meetings as opportunities to contribute, suggesting that successful meetings may be a factor for employee job satisfaction

• Most busy professionals (89 percent) believe that technology will make meetings easier in the future.

The popularity of mobile event apps – matched by their rapidly expanding power and flexibility – is a direct result of the newly emerging mobile workspace.

As more people use mobile devices at work, organizations are gearing up to take full advantage.

Mobile apps, in general, are enjoying strong global growth in the enterprise segment.

In June 2014, mobile app management company Apperian found that companies enjoying the most success with mobile apps focus on solutions for specific business processes.

Within this group, companies that put more emphasis on custom or vendor-built apps and employ reliable promotional and support activities report higher satisfaction with their apps.

Making an event of it
Mobile technology is seeing explosive growth within the meetings and events industry for the very same reasons that people value meetings and events: humans are insatiably social creatures, and we gravitate toward anything that stimulates and feeds our naturally social behavior.

It is no surprise that the most popular and fastest growing types of mobile apps are those that help people connect and share with others, such as social networking, games and messaging platforms.

So if meetings and events are popular because they are inherently social, and mobile apps are popular because they are social too, what happens when you combine them? Magic.

Mobile event apps work because they appeal to participants’ fundamental needs for connection and communication. They also impact how meetings and events are managed, enabling organizers to operate in real-time and respond to audience sentiment and preferences.

Mobile technology delivers because it is flexible, scalable and customizable, and it benefits an internal employee event as much as it does an external customer or partner conference.

Billions served
The role of a mobile app at a large event is crystal clear.

For attendees, apps provide easy access to the schedule, venue information, event content and other attendees.

For organizers, apps offer a channel for direct, real-time communication with attendees, and a rich source of data about their behavior before, during and after the event.

The mobile app benefits for large events can apply equally to other types of corporate meetings.

An app can augment the experience at any gathering that has a set agenda, dedicated content and a defined minimum number of participants. What that minimum is depends on the meeting type.

For an increasing number of organizations embracing the mobile workspace, a dedicated and fully branded mobile event app is a natural next step.

Most employees and associates already own their own smartphone or tablet. By 2016, Cisco estimates that there will be more mobile devices – 8 billion – than people on our planet.

A MOBILE EVENT APP is a powerful tool that is shaking up the traditional meeting modus operandi, while enhancing productivity, encouraging participation and leveraging technology to lower costs.

If it works for a large flagship event, then it can work for all other meetings where people come together to learn, connect and collaborate.

Patrick Payne is CEO of QuickMobile, Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada. Reach him at