Do you have a big conference, trade show, or other event coming up for your company? Are you concerned about your attendees and their ability to network with one another, either in person or online?
Some event organizers make the mistake of assuming that a few coffee breaks throughout the day are sufficient when it comes to event networking. That’s definitely not the case, though.
Using a networking software or event matchmaking service can help you encourage natural, productive interactions and ensure that everyone gets the most out of your event. Read on to learn 10 key reasons why you need an event matchmaking service to help your attendees take their networking to the next level.
What is an event matchmaking service?
Event matchmaking services are tools that event organizers use to stay organized and help conference attendees connect with one another. Attendees can use this service to learn about each other before the event even begins, and they can also use it to connect both during the event and after it has ended.
How do these tools work? Attendees create profiles, pair up with people who work in similar professions or who have complementary interests, and send requests to meet during events. It also lets attendees plan their agenda early so they can maximize their time spent at your conference or event.
Reasons you need an event matchmaking service
There are plenty of reasons to use an event matchmaking service or networking software when you’re planning your next big gathering. Keep reading to learn the major benefits these services can offer you.
1. Save time
Event networking software is a huge timesaver for both event organizers and event attendees.
For organizers, using the right software helps them to streamline their networking planning process. They have everything they need in one place and don’t have to worry about jumping back and forth between different programs or searching for information they may have misplaced.
For attendees, networking software helps them get right down to business as soon as they enter the event. They don’t have to waste time trying to plan out their agenda or figure out who they should meet because they’ll have already done that beforehand.
2. Reduce stress
In addition to being an incredible timesaver, an event matchmaking service can also be a stress-reliever.
Event organizers will still have a lot to do when it comes to planning and carrying out an upcoming conference or gathering. However, they will be way less stressed, especially since they’ll have access to checklists, calendars, and other organizational tools that help them stay on top of everything.
They can rest easy knowing they haven’t forgotten any important details.
Event attendees can also experience less stress since they can plan ahead and make arrangements to meet certain people before the event begins. This saves them from the awkwardness that comes when you try to pull someone to the side in a crowded room and get their contact information.
3. Build brand awareness
Event networking software also benefits the brands that event organizers work with while planning an upcoming conference or business event.
Because attendees can plan their agenda ahead of time, it’s easier for them to see which representatives from particular companies might be present. This, in turn, helps these companies to promote themselves and get people excited about what they have to offer and what they’ll be bringing to the event.
4. Gather valuable data
A big part of organizing a successful event is being able to look back on the data you’ve collected from past gatherings.
Without the help of event networking software, it can be hard, if not impossible, to gather the data you need. This software helps to simplify the process, though. It gives you access to all kinds of information, from details about the number of people who showed up and what kind of businesses they run to their overall satisfaction ratings and what they’d like to see from future events.
Armed with all this data, it’ll be easier for organizers to learn from the past and better prepare for upcoming conferences, shows, and other exciting opportunities.
5. Improve meeting quality
When event attendees can arrange meetings ahead of time, they can enjoy more quality time with the people with whom they wanted to meet. They can skip the small talk and get right down to business since they’ll already know of each other and will have had a chance to do some research before arriving.
Even if attendees don’t necessarily get more time with other people during the event, they'll improve the quality of their networking opportunities and get the most out of them.
6. Increase attendee engagement
One of the primary goals for event organizers is to see attendees interacting and engaging with one another. You’ll be much more likely to see this happen if you make use of an event networking software.
This software will help attendees feel more comfortable communicating with one another. They’ll also have deeper and more meaningful conversations over the course of your conference.
7. Enjoy easy implementation
Some event organizers might be hesitant about using an event matchmaking service because they worry that it’ll be too complicated.
The good news, though, is that the majority of these tools are very easy to implement and use. They can usually be set up within a few days at absolute most, so organizers can launch the service and get comfortable with it before introducing it to the event attendees.
Many of the services are web-based too. This means there’s no need for complicated technical setup prior to the event. Everything is organized and implemented online, and organizers can also customize their interface to work best for them, their preferences, and the structure of the event.
8. Integrate with other programs
In many cases, it’s also easy to integrate an event networking software with other online organizational tools. For example, event organizers can pair their software with their sales CRM or marketing automation system.
This ensures that everyone stays informed about the latest event planning developments. It also makes it easier to promote the event and give everyone access to the data they need (lists of attendees for sales professionals, for example) to get the most out of the conference.
9. Increase event satisfaction
As you’ve likely noticed, some of the benefits on this list apply more to event attendees than they do to event organizers directly. As the person planning an upcoming event, you may wonder why this is the case.
In short, when you have a system that benefits your attendees, they’re more likely to be satisfied with the event. If they’re more satisfied with the event, they’re more inclined to pay to come back in the future.
If you want to keep this conference, trade show, or other event going year after year, it pays to have satisfied attendees who will give it a positive rating and recommend it to their colleagues later on.
10. Analyze event outcomes
If you’ve been working in the event organization industry for any length of time, you know that your job doesn’t end when the conference or event you’ve planned does.
Once everyone packs up and the final deposits have been refunded, you’ve still got work to do. When you reach this point, your job is to analyze your event and figure out what you can do to make it better next year (or whenever your event is scheduled to be held next).
When you use event matchmaking services, the analysis process becomes much easier. You can get a clearer idea of what people like and didn’t like, meaning you can make informed decisions about what to add, subtract, or change for upcoming events.
Find a great event matchmaking service today
As you can see, the benefits an event matchmaking service can provide far outweigh the costs. If you’re in the process of planning a big event, or if you know you’ll be planning one soon, now is the time to invest in event networking software.
It will help you be as efficient and organized as possible during your planning process, and you’ll be able to ensure that all your attendees get as much out of the event as possible.