Gone are the days when people register for events by filling out paper registration forms and writing a check. Not only is it old school, but it’s outdated by comparison to some of the more modern streamlined processes. You got an event? Great, make it easy for your guests to confirm their spot with event registration software.
1. It’s Just Plain More Convenient
A streamlined process makes the registration a snap for both the attendees and the staff. It is clearly more efficient than snail mail where attendees have to print out a form, fill it out by hand, and sacrifice a perfectly good envelope and stamp.
Registration by mail also means it will take a few days for the complete and sent registration forms to arrive. This may make it tricky for data purposes as you won’t be able to identify those who already mailed their forms from those who opted not to attend.
2. Custom Fields
Event registration software makes it easy to customize a digital form. Aside from the obvious, such as name, address, and phone number, you can also include supplemental information that attendees may voluntarily add for statistical and analytic purposes.
This includes demographic information, such as the guest’s gender, age, and ethnicity. While you want to include as much fill-ins as possible to acquire maximum data, don’t overwhelm attendees with an overload of empty boxes that have to be checked and filled in. Less is more; beyond the basics, include no more than what you need and leave it at that.
An online registration can also be followed by a brief survey to get input from the guests indicating their overall perception of the sign-up process. Was it too long, did it not have their preferred payment option, etc.?
This allows you to modify the form to provide a better experience for those who have yet to register.
Customization options also mean the possibility for images like your logo and those of the event sponsors, to be placed on your tickets. This is a vital aspect for branding purposes and negotiating partnerships and sponsors for your events. Since your ticket template is another way for you to communicate with event participants, placing such images not only strengthens your own brand, but also has the potential to bring in additional revenue.
4. It’s Green!
Show your guests that your company is taking a step to prevent unnecessary paper waste by going digital. Here are some “fun” facts about paper to help you understand the importance of going digital. Your company can do its part by reducing its own footprint.
Of course, you should still make a small handful of paper copies for a minority demographic that still does things the old-fashioned way. Online forms also mean no need for mailing envelopes and preventing the waste of printing ink, which is derived from not-so eco-friendly sources like coal and oil.
5. Appeal to Non-English Speaking Guests
Your guests may include attendees who may not speak perfect English or even those coming from overseas. Appeal to these guests by creating an online form with multiple language options. This not only increases attendance rate, but it also heightens brand perception as it shows you go the extra mile to accommodate guests whose English is not their native tongue.
Most event software also includes a digital point-of-sales system that can accept foreign currency. If you are expecting guests from out of the country, then this is a huge plus as it prevents them from having to undergo a logistical hassle regarding currency conversions. On the subject of currency, your form can also allow for the input of a promo code for a discount off the normal registration fee.
6. Group Registration
These days, people hardly attend events by themselves; they often attend in groups. This usually includes the primary attendee and their immediate family. If you serve the B2B sector, it may also include corporate heads and members of their staff.
While every attendee still has to have a registration, group registration allows one person to register their entire party. If you have various B2B clients and their staffers attending, you will be able to break down the attendance numbers by group. The same goes for B2C clients attending with family and friends.
7. Registration Anyplace and 24/7
Guests can register at home, in their office, in a coffee shop sipping their latte, in a bus, or just about anywhere as long as they have a mobile device and Internet connectivity. Attendees don’t have to go to a physical booth or a kiosk to buy a ticket in physical print.
Within five minutes done anytime anywhere, they could secure their spot by inputting a few simple pieces of information via their mobile device. A confirmation email will be sent immediately after to let the registrant know that the transaction went through.
8. Real-Time Reports
Data tracking is vital. Event management software automatically computes the numbers and data for you. It also takes into account recent changes, such as an influx of new registrations as well as those who elect to not attend after having previously registered.
Not only are the numbers you’re getting more accurate, but it’s also automated, so there is no need on your end to break out the calculator to compute the numbers yourself. Accurate numbers ensure you don’t over or underspend for the event.
Make the Process Easier for Yourself and Your Guests
The registration process is a fairly simple yet vital part of the event. The registration is where you obtain raw data to ensure the remainder of the planning turns out smoothly. With just about everything going digital these days, it makes all the sense in the world to get with the times and make the transition to streamline the process for both the guests and your staff. If the registration process is as simple as a few clicks and filling a few blocks of information, then it stands to reason that you just might get a higher registration response rate.
Dan McCarthy is an Event Manager at JD Parties, an event management company based in the UK. Dan has 5 years of event project management under his belt. He has worked on many successful events, and currently he shares his knowledge by writing on the company blog. Follow him on Twitter @DanCarthy2.
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