The National Rural Electric Cooperative Association

Organically Increase Attendee Engagement with DoubleDutch

The National Rural Electric Cooperative Association (NRECA) annual Connect Conference brought together more than 600 professionals in the electric cooperative marketing and communications industry to educate them on best practices and available resources, as well as introduce them to the latest energy innovations. NRECA was looking for an intuitive event app to run a seamless, engaging conference for their audience of communicators and marketers, and they chose DoubleDutch.

Organic Adoption

Conference organizers used a brief video to introduce the event app to participants, but were most surprised by the organic adoption of the app, which was largely unprompted by event sponsors. Attendees chose to leverage the app as a communication tool, encouraging their peers to participate and respond in turn. The app’s ability to connect attendees and empower them to express their opinions helped create a lively newsfeed of ideas and opinions that perfectly complemented the presentations and ideas being shared at the show itself.
"Our attendees couldn’t get enough of the app and its easy-to-use features. Those in-app conversations directly translated to real-world engagement—our networking events and speaker sessions were more lively than they’ve ever been before."
Kristen Wheeler,
Event Program Planning Specialist, NRECA

Expanding Participation

Although NRECA had been using event apps for the past three years, they wanted to try an alternative that was not only user-friendly but also allowed users to proactively engage with the staff, speakers, sponsors, and each other. In particular, NRECA was looking for a new way to support their annual photo competition, which invited conference participants to submit their photos from the electrical industry and vote on their favorites. The photo competition had always been a highlight of past NRECA conferences, and the event organizers were interested in finding new ways to expand participation.

In addition to providing a mini social network within the conference, DoubleDutch was able to host the most successful photo contest the conference has had to date. Outside of the photo contest, the event app amassed more than 1,200 photos, which event organizers can use for the promotion of next year’s event.

An Event App as a Networking Tool

The app DoubleDutch designed for the Connect Conference took on a life of its own. Even before the event began, attendees relied on the app to reach out to new contacts, set up transportation, and solicit advice. During the conference, users were consistently fueling the activity feed, engaging with speakers during their presentations, and even utilizing bookmarks post-event to look back at activities they liked. Of the 623 people in attendance, 602 were active users, with 131,763 total in-app actions, 219 average number of actions per user, and usage of the app for over a week following the conference.
"The conference-goers immediately took to the app, and we know we’ll have to step it up again for our next event—we’ve set the bar high. We’re already planning on further app integration with both sponsors and speakers next year to drive even more involvement."
Kristen Wheeler,
Event Program Planning Specialist, NRECA

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