NVOLV: An Event App Your Sponsors & Attendees Will Love [Review]

NVOLV is an event app focused on increasing brand interactions and the event experience, using innovative features such as augmented reality and gamification. Here is our review.

NVOLV: An Event App Your Sponsors & Attendees Will Love [Review]

NVOLV: What Is It?

NVOLV is an event technology company looking to innovate the event experience. They have developed an event mobile app to increase brand activations and ROI focused on promotion, interaction and lead retrieval.

Augmented reality (AR), artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning are some of the most exciting developments discussed in the Event App Bible and offered by NVOLV. AR is used to encourage interaction with event stakeholders and the app uses proprietary algorithms and data to provide attendees with session, speaker and networking suggestions.

Let’s cover what these features really mean in action for your events.

The Main Categories of Features Are:

Networking. The app social feed supports commenting, picture sharing and integrates Twitter and Instagram hashtags. Every topic also has a dedicated conversation thread where attendees can chat and mingle with others who share the same interests.

Brand Exposure. Exhibitors and sponsors are given extensive profiles and options for exposure, including promotions, with detailed analytics.  

Augmented Reality (AR). Logos, brochures or any physical media can be turned into interactive AR content for attendees. Sponsors can export a leads list with actionable data on participation.    

Interaction. Live polling and surveys are supported in specific sessions or event-wide and results can be displayed in real-time. Rich push notifications can be sent or scheduled and there is a session check-in feature.  

Gamification. A QR code hunt can encourage attendees to visit every exhibit booth and a team-based or individual leaderboard sets goals and objectives to complete to win awards and giveaways.  

Review

The first element that separates NVOLV from many other event apps is the design and layout. There is no hamburger menu top-left of the screen, which is standard in many event apps. Instead, the navigation is at the bottom, which is a more natural and intuitive position for users. The app can land on any tab selected by the event planner. Most commonly chosen as the default screen are the Discover tab, which highlights speakers, schedules, social and sponsors, or the Schedule tab.

Attendees can use LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, or simply their email to sign into the app and fill out their profile information, including links to their social media profiles. If they see someone they want to make contact with they can send a private message via the app or go directly to the social profiles they have indicated.

On average it takes three or four days for Apple to approve an NVOLV event app. All of the approvals are requested in advance to reduce the waiting time. NVOLV recommend that your app should go live at least four weeks before your event.

All features can be enabled or disabled easily as required for your event. Customer support is available 24 hours a day and seven days a week. Most importantly though the entire app, other than push notifications and refreshing the activity stream, works offline. There is no worry in terms of the WiFi failing. You can still post onto the activity feed, participate in polls and surveys. If the connection drops the data is kept locally on phone and as soon as it becomes available, the data gets pushed to the server again.

Activity Stream

The app has its own private social network which combines posts from Twitter and Instagram via the hashtag, shows live sessions and supports commenting, video and picture sharing by event attendees. Other participants can reply and engage with the content within a private environment, only visible to other registered attendees. Password protection can be added for extra security. The activity feed is kept clean as any posts flagged by more than one user are automatically removed, giving some peace of mind to the event manager.

Schedule

The schedule is intelligent – it opens on the current day and time to show what is in progress. Attendees can add sessions to their personal schedule and then the app reminds them 5 minutes before a session is about to begin. Details can be presented with a bigger font or condensed view and there are color-coded tracks and filters.

Attendees can follow the topics they are interested in and there are tags throughout the application to tie in sponsors, exhibitors and specific discussion threads relating to these topics. The topic threads encourage conversations to keep going beyond the day of the event and to be active for weeks afterwards, rather than attendees immediately forgetting about and deleting the app. It gives a reason to keep coming back and topics can be followed or unfollowed at any time.

Session Check In

Attendees can check into sessions on a trust basis or if preferred event planners can require them to check in and also to check out to prove that they stayed for the whole session and didn’t leave early. This is particularly useful if proof of attendance is required, for example, to gain education or professional development credits.

Resources

The app supports the file sharing of formats including PowerPoint and PDF. Documents can be linked with sessions and speakers, or available event-wide. Attendees can email the content or use Messenger, Whatsapp, Facebook Messanger or any other native sharing options.

Polls and Surveys

General and session level polls and surveys can be set up and there can be multiple polls within a single session if required. These show in the session details so it is easy for the presenter to direct attendees to the content via the app. If the session has been added to a person’s schedule they will automatically get a push notification to encourage them to take part anyway.

Polls can be scheduled for a set period of time or shown on demand when activated by the speaker. Poll results can be displayed on the big screen, via a link, and are updated in real time. Results can also be viewed within the app.

Push Notifications

Push notifications can be sent immediately or scheduled in advance. NVOLV offers the opportunity for a title of 180 characters and also a further description, with no character limit, which can be completed in the description box below it. These rich notifications can be linked to content within the app such as sessions, speakers, sponsors, and exhibitors. A snippet is shown for attendees to be directed and follow for more information. This is a handy way to push details of specific sessions and to promote your event stakeholders. A SMS text service is available even if attendees don’t enable push notifications.

Gamification

QR codes can be given to all booths, or all of the key exhibitors, to give attendees the opportunity to play along by scanning the QR codes to win prizes. Attendees are then encouraged to visit every exhibitor or sponsor that is included. The progress of those that have been scanned or need to be visited shows in the attendee’s app.

Points can also be awarded for different tasks set by the event organizer, such as uploading their profile picture, interacting with the app or answering questions. The top performing teams, or individuals, can be shown within a leaderboard and rewarded or entered into a prize draw. This is a useful feature, particularly for hackathons, startup events, conferences, and team building.  

Exhibitors and Sponsors

Exhibitors and sponsors are given extensive profiles with an about section and social media links. Sponsors also have the option to set up promotions and offers for attendees. Within the app, the exhibitors and sponsors can rotate, but you can specify the top three to be shown, which naturally receive more impressions. Another nice touch is that sponsors and exhibitors can specify one or more brand ambassadors so attendees know who to speak to at the event and it helps to humanize the brand. Stakeholders can measure interactions, such as how many times content has been viewed, and can view analytics (depending on the policy of the event organizer).

Augmented Reality (AR)

This cool feature enables a product video or animated GIF to be shown when an attendee holds their device over a predetermined marker, such as their sales brochure, logo or other physical media. The attendee is then literally holding the video in their hand for a 3D effect, interactive experience.

The sponsor can add a call to action at the end, such as asking for an email address to receive a coupon, or further information, or showing a ‘buy now’ button. This opens inside the app. The app can even show different content to different attendees, depending on the topics they have confirmed are of interest to them. This enables messages to be more tailored and therefore more effective. At any point, sponsors can export a complete leads list with actionable data on attendee interaction with their brand.   

It is really quick to set up this functionality as long as the stakeholder has the video content, or animated GIF, ready to go. It takes just a few minutes to set the marker from the brochure or other collateral (a high-resolution image) and add a link to the video or animation file, repeating this for the different topics if the content shown is to be bespoke to match different attendee interests.

As long as the attendee has the app and the brochure or collateral that triggers the AR they can revisit it and show others from any location. This is clever in numerous ways as it means that the attendee is more likely to hang onto the brochure and more likely to show and share with colleagues afterwards too because of the novelty of the AR.

This feature is being developed further so it can work with an actual product, using a transparent background to allow the app user to explore additional information about different features – like an interactive sales brochure. There are lots more exciting developments in the pipeline for NVOLV too, which unfortunately we can’t cover this time as they are not yet live, but we can’t wait to cover them in a future review.

Features

Networking

  • A social feed that supports commenting, video, picture sharing and integrates activity from Twitter and Instagram hashtags
  • Detailed attendee profiles with social media links
  • Peer to peer messaging
  • Speakers, sessions, and sponsors are linked throughout the app via Topics
  • Every Topic has a dedicated conversation where attendees can communicate with others who share the same interests 
  • Detailed speaker profiles   

Brand Exposure

  • Extensive profiles for exhibitors and sponsors
  • Prioritize the top sponsors to give more exposure
  • Sponsor promotions and offers for attendees
  • Brand ambassador(s) highlighted to encourage interaction
  • Analytics and reports

Augmented Reality

  • Can turn logos, print materials, and any other physical media into interactive content
  • Videos and animated GIFs are supported
  • Content can be tailored to the attendee topic preferences for bespoke messaging
  • Sponsors can export a complete leads list with data on attendee participation  

Interaction

  • Live polling and surveys supported on a session level and event-wide
  • Multiple polls can run at the same time
  • Results are displayed in real-time in the app
  • A link can be used to share results with the audience via the big screen  
  • Rich push notifications can be linked with content in the app to highlight sessions, speakers, and sponsors
  • Ping attendees with reminders on upcoming sessions, polls, and surveys to complete
  • Session check-in feature
  • Session check out feature for when proof of attendance of the full session is required

Gamification

  • Individual or team leaderboard
  • Set goals and objectives for attendees to complete to win awards and giveaways
  • Influence attendee behavior 
  • Enable a QR code hunt to encourage attendees to visit every exhibit booth
  • Opportunity to win prizes for taking part taking the top spot

Who Is It For?

The app is suitable for all sizes and types of events, particularly corporate events, conferences, fundraisers, tradeshows and job fairs. The app is focused specifically on three equally important stakeholders at an event; the organizers, the attendees, and sponsors. NVOLV offers features tailored to the needs of each of these stakeholders for a better event experience.

Pros and Cons

Pros

  • The augmented reality feature is a cool way to encourage interaction with brands at the event
  • Gamification and the leaderboard can influence attendee behavior
  • The QR code hunt is a clever way to push footfall to exhibitors

Cons

  • Limited integrations
  • Absence of interactive maps
  • Investment in video or animated GIFs is required to take advantage of the AR feature

Pricing and Plans

The pricing depends on the features the client opts for. For a quotation please contact NVOLV directly.

In Conclusion

NVOLV have really focused on what sponsors, event planners and attendees are looking for. The innovative features really set them apart in terms of boosting brand interaction and improving the event experience. With even more exciting new features planned for the future, it is definitely worth checking out NVOLV.

Disclaimer: Reviews are paid for placements. While Event Manager Blog receives a fee to extensively look at the tool and review it in detail, the content of the review is independent and by no means influenced by the company. If you have any questions please use the contact us section.

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Julius Solaris
Editor, Julius Solaris

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