How It Works
Users first download the Attend software; they can use it on any desktop. Attend’s Check-In app is also available on any device, alongside an iOS app for iPads and iPhones.
Next, users can create their own registration form for their event, upload their contacts list, and send out invitations. As guests RSVP, users can keep track of who’s attending, who’s not, and who hasn’t responded yet.
During the event, users can pull up Attend to check-in guests, and send VIP alerts via text messages to specific attendees so they know the person they’ve been looking for has arrived.
Attend can also display relevant data about the event, such as how many people actually attended versus no-shows, who has donated to the school, an attendee’s graduation year, major and other information.
“You can [use] the app to help your development or advancement folks start a conversation with the event attendees,” says Courtney Pierce, VP of Marketing for Attend. “You can input notes in the app so that you have a record of the conversation and better manage a conversation in your follow up process…We make it easy to measure the performance of an event, such as how many people registered, how many people checked in, and you can slice and dice the data in a number of different ways.”
Tips To Using Attend Successfully
Figure out all of its features
Even though she’d like to, Lucero says she can’t use all of the features Attend offers due to FERPA regulations.
She recommends that other colleges that aren’t as restricted as Virginia Tech to try out as many of Attend’s features as possible to prepare their event planning-process.
“Use every single feature it has,” Lucero says. “There are so many neat features that I think would make a difference to people in their events; for instance, things like being able to upload information and get emails.”
K.I.S.S – Keep it Simple, Stupid
Pierce says that even though solutions like Attend exist, colleges still make the event planning phase too hard. Like Lucero was, they’re still relying on spread sheets and manual input, and juggling attendee response lists.
She says colleges should give solutions like Attend a chance, and try managing everything in one spot.
“They’re making the process more difficult than it needs to be because they’re managing a lot of different systems and siloes,” Pierce says. “We actually streamline that process and bring everything into one central platform, making it so much easier for our customers…It’s offloading from the manual prospects and headaches a lot of our higher ed customers deal with. We’re making it a lot easier for them, and making it a more enjoyable process.”
The Best Part for Last
While her event planning processes are quicker and simpler, Lucero says the best part about the solution is working with Attend.
She says Attend was all ears to her concerns and requests, and tweaked their solution to fit her needs.
“If you have something that doesn’t work right, or you just don’t like how it works, and you have a better idea or a preference for how you want to do things, do not hesitate to ask them,” Lucero says. “When I first started using it, it was missing some of the features I wanted, and all I had to do was ask, and they made a template for what I wanted. I think that’s the neat thing about the company, it’s young and small enough that they actually do pay attention to their customers.”