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3 must-have apps for your next event

5 min read

Brands & Campaigns

I spent the majority of my time at events, or on the road to the next event, traveling to industry conferences to talk about social media and how technology can simplify the life of event professionals. Today mobile technology can help with every aspect of an event, from organizing a session to selecting the right venue and drinks. Here are three of my favorite apps I that I use when speaking at an event for Goombal.

Engage with your audience with CrowdMics

CrowdMics is the first audio system that turns your smartphone into a wireless microphone for live events. Because one thing is for sure: When it’s time to choose microphone runners for the Q&A portion of a live speaking session, very few hands go up to volunteer.

Who wants to stand around waiting for someone to raise their hand, then try to run to them before they start speaking in a huge room full of people where nobody can hear them, and by the time you reach them, they’ve already finished their question and then you hand them the microphone and they have to start over? Forget it! No thank you.

The solution is CrowdMics. The application basically turns iOS and Android devices into linked microphones that can tap into the existing sound system in the room. Audience members are then queued up and ask their questions when their system is selected to speak. Watch Tim and Sean demo the tech here and stop treating your interns like gold medalist, “tag-you’re-it” competitors.

Additional features are that you can also text questions and use it for instant polling results as well.

Je peux parler francais with Word Lens

The second app is Word Lens, a translator app for iOS and Android that translates written text instantly. But first let’s set the scene: I’m in Cannes, France, planning yet another Cannes Lions Creativity Conference. I speak just enough French to get me arrested. I have a translator with me who is assisting me with negotiations, venue management, etc., but on this particular day, she’s running late for our lunch meeting.

I’m starving because all I had for breakfast was a thimble of espresso and a biscuit.

I want to order, but the menu might as well be in French! Time to whip out Word Lens!!! The most incredible app I’ve ever seen for world travelers, language impaired, and unsophisticated American lazy slobs like me…or at least I think that’s what my waiter just called me.

The app was just recently purchased by Google, it has been around for a while, and it just keeps getting better. Some of the languages are free, and some cost a couple of dollars, but all are worth it. All you do is hold it over the words and, WOW! Je ne peux pas croire que je parle francais!

Choose the right wine for your event

The third application which I used recently at one of my events is Vivino, the #1 wine scanner app. I use the app to keep track of wines I’ve chosen for parties, events, or when I’m traveling. Simply take a photo of any wine label to tap into the wisdom of more than 5 million wine lovers. But first let me set the scene again: Close your eyes. No wait…. You can’t read with your eyes closed. Keep them open. Now, just imagine this: You’re on vacation in northern Italy. It’s a perfect summer day. You find this amazing little trattoria, and decide you want to order some delicious spaghetti carbonara. And of course, there’s no chance you’re going to spend the next two hours eating the best food on Earth without ordering the perfect bottle of wine to go with it.

You ask the waiter to suggest the best match and he chooses for you…. That’s his job, let him do it. He brings you a bottle of La Tunella (Friuli Colli Orientali) from 2011. A smooth, round and bright white filled with stone fruit and Golden Delicious apple aromas. It is perfect. You love it. You want to remember this moment. You want to order more. You wish you had a pen and paper??? No.

Download the Vivino app immediately and never forget a great bottle of wine again.

This app does it all. It stores your wines simply by taking a photo of the label. It gives you great reviews and rankings for finding other fantastic wines. And it allows you to add your own reviews so others can learn from your choices.

As the current Head of Sales & Marketing for Goombal, and as the former Head of Global Event Marketing for Twitter, Tom Spano has been at the forefront of Events and Social Media Technology for over 10 years. Tom has worked with brands such as Hilton, Marriott, Yahoo!, Mobile World Congress, and SXSW, and has hosted and sponsored hundreds of events large and small. Tom has also won several industry awards such as the ‘SXSW 2013 Vines to Follow’. Tom travels the world speaking on stages and educating marketers on new, cutting edge practices and technologies that create better and more efficient live events.