Corporate and Government events are complicated to manage and your event management software needs to be fully featured for you to run them efficiently.
Realising their new event management platform is missing business critical and efficiency features is the number one complaint event management businesses have with their software.
That’s why we’ve created this list of the most important event management software features.
Before you get out your spreadsheets and comparison tables, make sure every software package on your shortlist includes these must-have components.
Buying Guide: 9 Event Management Software Features You Must Have
1. Integrated Event Calendar
The event calendar is the organisational foundation of your event, so it is an essential part of your event management software.
You should have the ability to quickly and easily adjust your calendar as plans change—because we all know your event plans will change. You also need to be able to display your event calendar to guests and integrate it into your existing website.
Swift Digital’s EventsDesk Calendar Creator
2. Appointment Booking Calendar
Keynote speeches and workshops are not the only reason your attendees keep coming back. 1-on-1 appointments, like this example from IOOF are a crucial part of all successful events. If your event software facilities these networking opportunities, it adds significantly to the value of your event.
This feature is especially important when managing events for professional organisations.
Attendees at any event will appreciate the effort, but software for managing investment events or for organising legal and accounting events absolutely needs to take into account the busy schedules of the attendees.
3. Email and Marketing Automation
Communication with attendees needs to happen in a timely and organised manner. Automations let you accomplish this goal without adding dozens of extra tasks to your already full to-do list.
Your event management software already has the attendee and calendar information for your event, making it the ideal hub for all of your event communications.
Just make sure that your software has built-in email and marketing automation to seamlessly manage all of the communications for the event so you’re not diving in out of several software tools all the time.
Swift Digital’s Event, Email and Communications Platform
4. SMS Communications
When a last-minute scheduling change occurs, you need a way to notify everyone quickly, and SMS messaging is the perfect option.
So your event management software should have the option for sending out SMS messages or multi-channel (email and SMS) communications.
These timely communications can mean the difference between an attendee missing an important presenter or rescheduled networking event.
5. Multiple Payment Gateway Integrations
You shouldn’t process event payments manually or use a separate software package to accept payments.
Your event management software packages should handle all areas of the invoicing and payment process: payment collections, invoice creation, and other critical financial functions.
Also, when choosing your software, you should look at the range of payment method integrations. Make sure that it will integrate to the payment gateways preferred, or more often required, by your finance department.
Setting up the payment gateway also needs to be quick, easy and does not require extensive support from your IT department.
6. White-Label Branding
Your marketing materials should be unique and well-branded. Your audience needs to see your colours and your logo, not those of the event management software.
Even the most unobtrusive branding by your event management software supplier will make your landing pages, emails, and other marketing materials look cookie cutter.
With the right event software, your customers will see no indication that you used specific software or templates. They’ll just see a clean, uniform message coming from your brand.
7. Flexible and Easy to Use Templates
Starting with a template is great but if your event management software uses rigid templates that only offer limited customisation, your customers will immediately recognise that your registration forms, emails, and other marketing materials are generic.
Templates should give you ideas and guidance, but they shouldn’t stifle your company’s unique charm.
They should also be easy to use, and not require a specialist media agency or graphic designer to use – you should be able to do it all “in-house” and still have it look great.
8. Continuing Professional Development Points and Certificates
If you’re running Continuing Professional Development (CPD) courses you know their unique requirements. Make sure your system can support those requirements.
Participants accrue points and receive certificates after the event is complete, and some event management software can’t handle those additional steps.
Event managers who run CPD courses should verify that their software has these crucial features. Trying to run those processes manually is time consuming, and prone to human error, hindering event growth and leading to frustrating attendees with delayed or missing certificates.
9. Integrations With Other Communications and Marketing Tools
Copying information between software packages is a time-consuming and error-prone process. It is to be avoided if at all possible. Ensuring your software system talks directly to each other will save time and reduce frustration.
So when choosing an event management software, consider all of the software and tools that you use in your event-management workflows and check that it either provides those features directly or works easily with your existing packages.
For example, most event managers will need tools for:
The benefits of event management software are dampened if your software doesn’t communicate seamlessly with your other tools. Try to find a software platform that integrates with at least the most important workflows in your event management process.
For Your Event Planning, Use Event Management and Automation Software
Event automation is a proven and effective way of scaling and improving your marketing efforts and is an integral part of your overall marketing strategy.
Swift Digital can help you to develop a professional and creative event automation strategy that will save you time and money and ensure your event is a success. Marketing automation is a powerful tool when used to its full advantage.
For more information on using marketing automation, check out our complete guide to marketing automation best practices.
We have the skills and experience to help you create the perfect event management campaign and our automation platform ensures everything runs smoothly from initial promotion through to final follow-up.
To find out more about Swift Digital’s automation platforms, call our sales team today on 02 9929 7001 to request a demo.