When you’re planning on hosting global events, there’s one key element that you simply cannot overlook: not everyone speaks the same language.
As different nationalities come together, event organizers are challenged to break down language barriers to provide an equally engaging experience for everyone.
To address this challenge, your technology tools, including mobile event apps, play an important role in bringing people together. According to American Express Meetings and Events, the top three most compelling reasons to use a mobile app are ‘improving communication, improving engagement of attendees, and facilitating networking of attendees.’
But providing an equally engaging experience for everyone at global events requires more than simply offering a mono-lingual mobile event app, or just building separate apps for each language. The real solution lies in offering a universal multilingual tool that serves the needs of all attendees equally.
If you want your global events to succeed, here are seven reasons why multilingual tools are key to a uniformly engaging experience:
1) Your attendees deserve a seamless experience
Bring your attendees together by allowing all of them to download a single tool from the app store, instead of sending them off to different corners for different downloads. Once downloaded, attendees should be able to personalize the tool for their preferred language. For example, a multilingual app should recognize the native language setting on the attendee’s device and seamlessly default to that language, cutting out language unnecessary headaches for attendees.
2) Building an app for each language is a waste of your time
When you don’t have a truly multilingual app, you’re forced to create separate apps for each language. But what if your event is in several languages? Rather than having a single convenient place to enter all of your content in multiple languages, you’ll be force to build separate apps over and over.
3) Distributing multiple tools is inefficient
Even if you successfully create separate apps for each language, you’ll then have to submit each of them to the app stores for approval. So instead of having one simple submission for an app covering all languages, you now have multiple submissions and app store approvals to deal with.
4) One tool means one content updating system
The great thing about digitized tools such as event apps is that it’s easy to change content on the fly. If a speaker arrives late, you can quickly reschedule her session and notify attendees. Now imagine the administrative nightmare of having tens or hundreds of updates to make throughout your event, in multiple languages, for each of your multiple apps.
5) Linking apps together is clunky
If you need a separate app for each language, the only way to link them together is via the mobile web version. That puts attendees through a process you’d probably rather not have: first attendees need to access your mobile web app by opening their browsers and entering the URL, and then you need to redirect them to the right version of your app on the right store. From there they need to download your app – all before they even get started with your content.
6) Attendees remain in silos
When each language requires a separate tool, attendees using it in one language will not be able to message or set up appointments with attendees in another. Even though both tools are for the same event, technically they are separate and cross-functionality is impossible. They will also not be able to upload and share content with anyone other than those who speak their language, such as photos, comments on message boards, or any app activity such as gaming that requires attendee input.
7) It’s a promotional nightmare
Promoting multiple apps places an unnecessary burden on your events team. Furthermore, the burden of choice puts the onus is on your events team to promote the right app to the right attendees in their language of choice. Those who miss the message will have to locate the right app on the appropriate app store that is built for their language.
New methods of global communication are breaking down barriers of language, physical distance, and more. With the right tools, you can create global events that seamlessly bring your attendees together.
What kind of linguistic challenges have your encountered at your events? Let us know in the comments below, or Tweet us @QuickMobile!