Ribyt: Treat Every Guest Like a VIP [Review]

Ribyt is an all-in-one event concierge platform to personalize the event experience for each and every attendee. Here is our review.

Ribyt: Treat Every Guest Like a VIP [Review]

Ribyt: What Is It?

When we plan events we have multiple stakeholders and guests involved but often everyone receives the same communications, sees the exact same web content and completes a standard registration form, with little or no customization. In a world where we are used to being served bespoke content, recommendations and ads based on our specific personal preferences and past behaviors this approach is outdated and leaves events at a disadvantage.

The Ribyt event management technology enables event planners to customize the guest experience to multiple different groups attending, meaning that VIPs, special guests and sponsors can receive different messaging and perks to regular attendees or press. This can improve the perception of the event and make everyone feel like a VIP, as their expectations are always managed and bespoke details shared. Ribyt can manage an unlimited amount of guest types, for very complex events.

Ribyt was designed by an experiential marketing agency for their own internal use and launched publicly a year ago. Originally it was used for contest winners to customize for different levels of guests. Ribyt was purchased by Condé Nast in March 2017.

Let’s explain how it works in a little more detail.

The Main Categories of Features Are:

Design. Design and deploy custom event websites, invitations, and branded emails. Use different messaging, personalized for different groups of attendees.

Data. Track the status of RSVPs and registration in real-time, collect attendee data specific to different guest types and manage the signing of relevant legal documents.

Travel and Rooming Lists. Manage travel, accommodations, and ground transportation. Bulk upload flight and hotel details to automatically update the attendee’s individual itinerary.

Itineraries. Personalized and detailed itineraries are automatically created for each group with data specific to each individual attendee.

Communication. Easily communicate with attendees via email and SMS to manage expectations and minimize frustrations if there are any late changes. Send event-wide or group specific messages and geo-triggered SMS.

Review

The content created is fully branded and Ribyt creates a more human element, instead of serving up standardized messaging, which could be detrimental to the event. From the first communication through to the post-event follow-up guests receive a personalized experience and know exactly what to expect from the event, without requiring event professionals to manage each guest and every change manually.

Dashboard and Set Up

The dashboard gives a quick overview of all the event projects coming up, with the most recent event at the top. Past events can be found in the archived tab. The side menu offers a walkthrough which guides you through the setup of each event project in a specific order.

For every event, you can create one or several groups. For example, this could be VIPs, press, competition winners, past attendees, speakers, sponsors, regular attendees and so forth. Each group may have one or several members. A group name is specified for the organizer’s reference only, this is not visible to the attendee. Ribyt doesn’t accept payments yet, so the tool is currently best for events where paid ticketing is not required through the platform. Commerce and payments will, however, be added to a future release.

Ribyt doesn’t accept payments yet, so the tool is currently best for events where paid ticketing is not required through the platform. Commerce and payments will, however, be added to a future release.

Event Byts

Once the groups are determined you can build each group activity. Event Byts are the building blocks you create to plan anything and everything that needs tracking. There are four types of Event Byts: Travel, Hotel, Activity, and Bonus. Activity Byts cover elements such as meetings, events, activities and check in. Bonus Byts are for elements such as gift bags, merchandise, and other perks. This enables the experience of each group to be built differently. For instance, VIP attendees and competition winners messaging will be different to standard attendees and they might attend private events and receive extra perks, such as goodie bags or be entitled to travel booking, transfers, and accommodations.

Guests and Inventory

The inventory allows a cap to be put on the number of places available. So if 25 seats are available the system will not allow more than 25 places to be booked. It also prevents more than 25 people being invited in the first place unless it is an open invitation offered on a first come first served basis. The organizer can also specify if guests of guests can be invited, and if so if this is a +1 or specifically how many additional guests are allowed. Ribyt doesn’t just accept the name of the guest, it requests their email address so that it can confirm attendance directly with the individual and ensure direct communication of the key information.

The organizer chooses if they wish to allow invitations to be declined too so that people are not followed up for an answer unnecessarily. Each Byt can be shown on the itinerary or hidden from view. Access control can be specified for each event with clear details of what is needed, such as tickets, VIP credentials, wristband, etc. Additional information, welcome and departure messages can be created for each group too. The event locations are pulled directly from Google and includes a map of the location. Guest lists can be imported as a working guest list ready to invite or to send a save the date mailer.

Five role-based security levels can be assigned to staff within each event. To share the burden of sign ups the organizer can allocate hosts to send invites. Hosts can access the system to add guests and send out invitations but they have no editing rights or access to other elements and the planner has an overview of all activities. Controlling access to creative and marketing assets protects the event branding and ensures that messaging is deployed at the right times.

Guest lists can be uploaded from Excel or imported from Salesforce. There is no charge or limits for the number of emails issued, although Ribyt is built for personal mailing to potential guests, not for marketing blasts to large email lists. The per person fee is based on the number of confirmed guests, not based on the number of people invited.

Guest History

If guests have attended an event before it remembers their details to save them having to re-enter all of their personal information. The organizer can also view each individual profile and see their history, including past events they attended, were invited to, declined and so forth.

RSVP status can also be viewed for each individual to check whether the invitation has been delivered, clicked on, responded to, guests specified, etc. Groups can be filtered for follow up, for example, an email can be sent out to everyone that hasn’t responded. Automatic reminders are not yet available but in the future it will be possible to schedule a chase up at a pre-determined time interval to people that have not responded.

Flights and Hotels

If flights are part of the package for some or all groups the organizer can specify the options. For instance, if attendees are booking their own flights it can stipulate whether they can choose economy flights only or if business class flights are permitted. Attendees can add their own flight details and by inputting the flight number it will pre-populate all the times and data. Alternatively, if flights are being booked for them it can specify their preferences and details or they can select from a menu of options if they have a limited choice of flights to select from.  

The flight import tool enables flight details to be forwarded to an email address for Ribyt to automatically import the details to the right person’s record. An important and very cool part of the flight import tool feature is that it cross-checks with FlightStats to ensure complete accuracy every time flight information is forwarded to the system.

If there is a change to flights or arrival times, for instance, if someone is flying in a day later than originally planned the details are updated on the system, with the itinerary and all related information updated. If they were registered to attend a welcome event which they will now miss out on, this removes them from the list for that activity and opens up a place for someone else, without the event planner having to do anything more.

Rooming lists and hotel confirmation numbers can be bulk uploaded and Ribyt automatically populates the details on the relevant record. Rooming list reports can be run and printed for updates in real time against your room block. It is also possible to plan and manage multiple types of ground transportation.

Customization

The communications for each group can be personalized, using different wording, requesting different information on the signup form and offering each different type of attendee a personalized itinerary listing all of the perks that group type will receive, customized to each individual. Survey questions can also be customized to the attendee group and level.

Naturally merge fields can personalize the greeting to each attendee by name, but it can also include other specific merge fields within the HTML emails created. The messages can be cloned and details changed as required. All communications can look the same, using the same branding, but messaging can be different to meet your specific event needs, for each specific group.

Mobile Responsive Event Pages

Websites can be created using a drag and drop tool within Ribyt, or you can use another website builder such as Squarespace, Wix and other tools if you prefer. The invitation can be set to send your potential guests through to the website first or straight to the registration process to sign up. If it is not an open registration link only authorized and invited people can register.

Digital Concierge

The guest can preview their itinerary at any time and tickets will be stored in their mobile wallet. The itinerary is listed in chronological order and includes supporting information so that everything is in one place, including barcodes, tickets, flight details, and any further instructions.

Things can change and it is important to keep attendees informed, to avoid any frustrations. Ribyt enables event-wide or group specific messages to be issued via SMS and email. You can also send messages by Byt or by activity and contact individuals. This increases the chances of every guest receiving the right information and being kept up to date, even when on site at the event. Geo-triggered SMS means that location triggered text messages can be issued automatically to guide attendees and timed messages can be scheduled to be sent out at specific times.

Legal Documents

Ribyt is integrated with HelloSign in case different attendee groups need to sign legally binding documents during the signup process. Each group can have different documents specific to them and it auto populates the details from the attendee data completed during the registration process, so the same information does not need to be re-filled.

A confirmation message is given on successful completion and a signed copy is emailed onto the guest for their records. Legal documents might include NDA, speaker contracts, booking terms and conditions, compliance forms and so forth.

Dynamic Data

Events often end up with multiple copies of the same document, tracking constant changes and updates. Ribyt means that everything on the system is updated in real time, and done intelligently, rather than needing manual intervention from the organizer. Any changes are instantly reflected in attendee itineraries. Custom reporting templates can be created, based on any piece of data you may need. If you require a specific travel manifest this can be created and the report will be available across all event projects. Reports can be run and emailed out to the relevant people automatically at scheduled times or intervals.

Check In App

The Ribyt app allows staff to view and check people in via iOS and Android devices. It works with 1D and 2D barcodes and RFID. An individual can be checked in to multiple events at once, or just into a single event, such as checking people onto the coach at the airport. The check in status syncs and updates in real time so the organizers know exactly who is present. Eventually staff with the relevant permissions will be able to make changes directly via the app too, rather than only via the desktop site.

Managed Services

If you are looking for a turnkey solution to help you manage guests, rather than a self-service solution, the event concierge team can handle everything for you, even down to negotiating with hotels and on site execution.

Features

Design

  • Design and deploy custom event websites
  • Send customized invitations and branded emails
  • Tweak design, branding and messaging for different groups
  • Public and private registration links

Data

  • Track RSVPs and registrations
  • Collect attendee data based on guest type/level
  • Monitor attendance and check additional details with guests directly if plus ones are permitted
  • Assign legal documents to be executed during RSVP or registration
  • Attendee registration and RSVP updates in real time

Travel and Rooming Lists

  • Manage travel, accommodations, and ground transportation
  • Bulk upload information which is added to the relevant attendee itinerary
  • Email flight information for automatic updating against the correct person
  • Change a flight and all items and information affected are automatically adjusted

Itineraries

  • Dynamically create detailed itineraries for each attendee, detailing welcome details, registration, events, travel and hotel information, as relevant to the individual
  • Assemble different itineraries or packages for different groups
  • Make changes that are instantly reflected in attendee itineraries
  • Ribyt’s on-site event app syncs check-in status and changes in real-time

Communication

  • Easily communicate with attendees via email and SMS
  • Send event-wide or group specific messages
  • Send messages by byt/activity and by individual
  • Manage expectations, minimize frustrations and communicate late changes
  • Geo-triggered SMS can automatically send location triggered messages to guide attendees
  • Mobile wallet tickets are delivered straight to mobile devices and stored in the mobile wallet
  • Delegate work to your team, partners and vendors and assign them specific roles
  • Customize reports for your event and save the template for future use
  • Schedule reports to run and be emailed out automatically

Who Is It For?

Ribyt is for brands, agencies and event professionals who manage different event guests or levels of attendees for their events. It is particularly suited for large and complex events and for events managing travel and hotel bookings for some or all of their group.

The enterprise level package is for those who want to bring in an event concierge team to manage guests on their behalf, rather than using Ribyt as a self-service platform.

Pros and Cons

Pros

  • Considers the guest/attendee experience and messaging in every element.
  • Dynamic assets automatically update when changes are made and Ribyt allows bulk upload and updates by email, which are intelligently saved against the relevant guest booking.
  • Ideal for massive, complex events with multiple attendee types and requirements.

Cons

  • Not ideal for large, one-size-fits-all events like trade shows.
  • The focus is not on managing teams or vendors, it is focused primarily on the guest experience, which is a refreshing but different approach.
  • A commerce option to charge for event tickets and event packages isn’t yet available (coming in a future release).

Pricing and Plans

Ribyt is charged per confirmed attendee meaning that you only pay for what you use. There are 3 levels of pricing:

  • Basic – is for local events or guests that don’t require flights and hotels.
  • Premium – covers everything, including travel and accommodations.
  • Managed – this is the enterprize level package, offering a full turnkey, managed service.

Even within the same event you only pay for what you use, so if only 50 confirmed guests need hotels and travel then only 50 will be charged at the premium rate, the rest of the attendees are charged at the basic rate.

Group discounts are available for high volume events. Please contact Ribyt for more information.

Please contact Ribyt for more information about pricing.

In Conclusion

Personalization is something our guests expect in many areas of their daily life and so naturally they expect to receive a similar bespoke service when attending events. As eventprofs we want to offer the best possible event experience and targeted, rather than blanket, messaging to achieve our objectives. Ribyt enables multiple attendee types to experience a customized journey from the first invitation, right through to the final event survey, without increasing the workload of the event planner. To give all of your guests a VIP service you should definitely consider the Ribyt event concierge platform.

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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