A survey has been released in celebration of Small Business Saturday®, finding that 81% of small business and nonprofits planning events expect to increase their use of mobile technology to market their events in the next year. The survey, conducted by EventSpot™ from Constant Contact® also shows that an overwhelming 90% of these planners say that they would like to learn how they can leverage mobile technology specifically for their events.
Chris Litster, vice president and general manager of EventSpot™, says, “Mobile tools will no doubt assume a much bigger role in event planning for small businesses and nonprofits but considerable training needs to occur before we’ll see widespread adoption.”
In other words, many businesses would like to take advantage of mobile marketing for their event planning but are unsure how to do so. Only sixteen percent of those surveyed are currently distributing content to an event registrant’s mobile device. The content includes event schedules, session descriptions, speaker biographies, and presentation slide decks.
Surprisingly, thirteen percent of those surveyed said that they either were not interested in, or had no opinion about, using smart phone technology for future events, stating that their smart phones are just for their personal usage and not for work. Litster reported that small businesses are often resource starved, thus leaving them without funds to invest in work-specific mobile technology, but he thinks they would see the value if they explored just how mobile technology could save them time and help them reach their customers more readily.
In addition to, and part of, mobile technology, the power of social media to promote events and engage attendees is gaining momentum among event planners, with many of the survey respondents already promoting events using a hashtag, or planning to promote events using a hashtag. In addition, 27% of the respondents use Pinterest, with 18% having created a specific board for attendees to post on.
“We definitely sense a shift in the awareness and willingness of small organizations to leverage both social and mobile tools for events,” said Litster. “Our EventSpot team has seen more planners collecting Twitter handles during the registration process and sending out follow-up communications through Twitter post-event, for example. As EventSpot and other industry partners continue educating planners on the tremendous benefits of mobile and social technologies, we expect to see usage dramatically rise.”