Why Increasing Member Engagement at Conferences Is All in a Name
Every minute of your time spent preparing for an annual meeting is precious. You have to search for a venue, determine what food will be served, book a keynote speaker, and the list goes on. No task is considered too insignificant or unimportant because every piece plays an integral role in the overall meeting. You want all that hard work that went toward planning this meeting to increase member engagement—to have your attendees leave feeling inspired and enthused to share what they have learned.
Each year, the Catholic Health Association (CHA) holds an Annual Meeting where hundreds of attendees and speakers get together to focus on the advancement of healthcare. CHA recently celebrated their centennial anniversary and their closing speaker was President Barack Obama. In order to plan for this milestone occasion, CHA needed a way to streamline some of their processes so that on the day of the conference everything would operate perfectly.
What's in a Name?
As with the majority of conferences, name badges are an essential item that require a lot of time to create. Badges might seem like a trivial detail, but such a seemingly small detail can actually cost a lot of time and energy when there isn’t an efficient process for producing and distributing them. Also, chances are you’ll be encountering lots of people who you’d want to connect with, so it’s helpful to have those name badges. Nothing is more awkward than forgetting someone’s name, or worse, calling them by the wrong name simply because they weren't wearing a badge!
In preparation for its Annual Meeting, CHA would pre-print badges ahead of time for attendees. “Typically, we pre-print the badges and we’d have staff members look at each and make sure they are correct and then print a final badge. These badges would take a long time to print,” recalls Tony Cable, Senior Application Engineer at CHA. Once the badges had been checked for accuracy, staff would mail them to attendees and speakers. In most instances, attendees would then inform CHA members whether any changes needed to be made and then badges would have to be reprinted and mailed once again.
“It was a long and drawn out process, and we needed to make it more efficient,” says Cable.
Badges Go Digital
Instead of mailing the badges, CHA came up with a solution to handle this process online. CHA staff emailed attendees an image of what their name badge would look like so that each person could view it online and make any necessary corrections. Once they had reviewed their name badge, attendees would go to the web page and click “yes” or “no,” and their responses would automatically update to Aptify’s e-Business suite. If someone clicked “no,” the individual could enter in their updated information, whether it was a correction in their name, company, or any extra information required, and these changes would alert Aptify and generate an updated badge for verification.
By utilizing the e-Business suite and streamlining their name badge process, CHA was able to deliver a great experience to their attendees and could focus their attention on other parts of their annual meetings.
For more information on how the CHA uses Aptify to streamline its conferences, check out the case study.
About Chandra Chakravarthi
As a Coordinator of Content, Branding, & Buzz at Aptify, Chandra supports the department with content creation, digital advertising, and overseeing the social media channels. Outside of Aptify, you can find her exploring Chicago and eating too much pizza while she waits for her letter from Hogwarts.