From the very beginning, Event Management software was an all-in-one solution. Meeting managers faced dozens, if not hundreds of tasks, so event management technology focused on the big picture, not just one part of it.
Registration, name badges, itineraries, housing, functions, email communications, and later online registration forms were all integrated in one complete solution.
And with that comprehensive approach came a high cost of acquisition.
Even today, many event management solutions are based on this old model of comprehensive solutions that come at a high price, typically driven by the model of per-person registration fees.
For example, if you were a professional conference organizer managing a dozen meetings a year with an estimated registration count of 10,000 registrations, it is not uncommon to see yearly technology fees in the $40,000 to $60,000 range.
However, with the advent of mobile apps, the event management software industry has experienced a major paradigm shift in how technology is deployed and priced.
Almost overnight, the comprehensive meetings platform because old news and dozens of new solutions entered the marketplace as stand-alone apps.
First there were the attendee apps.
Then, we saw specialized ticketing platforms. Meeting matching apps. Audience polling apps. Exhibitor management apps. The list keeps growing and meeting managers have more and more choices.
For the most part, this was a fantastic shift for meeting organizers. More solutions to choose from allowed meeting planners to purchase only what they needed and provided more targeted solutions that meeting planners were seeking.
But, there is a downside to the specialized app approach to meeting management.
The challenge focuses on data management and how you get data from one app synchronizing with data in another app.
Another challenge alongside data synchronization was that obtaining your technology piece-by-piece meant increasing your overall technology cost and dealing with multiple solution providers.
It is not uncommon for planners to have three or four sets of contact numbers for different support teams. Some offer 24×7 support, others do not.
While multiple apps offer great choice and flexibility, the challenge of coordinating all that data and support services is a difficult challenge.
Today we are seeing the resurgence of the all-in-one platform, but with an app-like approach to pricing and service.
One product, EventsAIR by Centium Software brings to the industry a hybrid approach to event management technology. Designed and delivered as an app, EventsAIR brings with it a comprehensive all-in-one platform of tools and workflows designed specifically for meeting organizers.
“We’ve been in this business since 1992, and have over 25 years’ experience supporting meeting planners,” said Centium CEO Trevor Gardiner. “When we decided to write a new solution, we wanted to leverage our history and experience supporting meeting organizers. At the same time, however, we wanted to completely rethink how we packaged and priced our technology so meeting planners could better plan for their current and future technology needs.”
Mr. Gardiner noted that their flagship platform, EventsAIR, accomplished something even more significant than providing excellent value to their clients.
“We are the only solution in the world today that is designed as an app, offers flat licensing fees, and provide dozens of advanced solutions normally provided by third-party solutions,” Mr. Gardiner said. “Our platform offers all of the expected technology, such as registrations, functions, accommodation, and more, but we also include advanced solutions such as native attendee apps, exhibitor lead retrieval and onsite check-in solutions at no additional cost.”
Mike Rissien, owner of Military Reunions and Events, noted that EventsAIR provided him with advanced capabilities while allowing him to effectively manage his bottom line.
“EventsAIR gives me all of the features I need, included onsite check-in tools and attendee apps,” Mr. Rissien said. “I am paying less than half of what I was paying for solutions that charged me $3.00 or $4.00 a registration, and I don’t have to pay extra for apps and onsite services. For the first time in many years, I am able to grow my business without growing my technology costs.”
Technology is changing rapidly and meeting planners all over the world are facing the challenge of how to grow their businesses and add services and functionality to their clients.
Piece-by-piece, or all-in-one, the choice is faced by meeting planners every day. Only you will know the model that best works for you.