Live events and conferences are a major source of revenue for some of the top creators, coaches, and entrepreneurs in the world.
Every creator we talk to is planning in-person events in 2022 and because of the virtual muscles they built during the pandemic, they're now using the apps and online communities they created during the pandemic to enhance their events strategy in new ways.
While virtual events are still an excellent way to increase revenue and connect with your members on a deeper level, many creators are beginning to embrace live events again, and their using fully-branded apps for iOS and Android to help their attendees get the most out of the experience before, during, and after.
Ahead, we’re going to take a look at a few highly successful creators who’re using branded apps as a major play in reaching new levels of growth for their businesses.
Drew Binsky’s JUST GO app
Drew Binsky is a content creator and world traveler who has visited all 197 countries in the world and documented his travels on his YouTube channel where he has over three million subscribers.
His videos shed light on the wide array of food, culture, activities, and communities that compromise our vast planet and while he has a vibrant community on YouTube, he wanted to connect with his members in a more direct way.
In the past, Binsky has scheduled one-off meetups by using your typical social media strategies: posts, livestreams, YouTube videos, and announcements which worked but weren’t very scalable. He needed a solution that could fit perfectly within his growing brand, but provide a more dynamic, on-the-go experience for his community.
For a traveler like himself, Binksy is passionate about the spontaneous connections one can make while traveling and a mobile app that connected tens of thousands of travelers in one place seemed perfect.
With the help of Mighty Pro, Binksy and his team built fully branded apps for iOS and Android devices that are revolutionizing the ways they do live events and connect their worldwide community.
The JUST GO app is an intimate space that brings together his travel community as one giant family. In the app, members can talk with other travelers, and join meet-ups in cities around the world (and especially near where they live thanks to locations services). Basically, you can think of the JUST GO as the coolest social travel club in the making on the market today.
Binksy is going all-in on his mobile app as a major marketing strategy for live events too. When you visit his Instagram or various other social feeds, you’ll notice that the JUST GO APP is front and center. On his Linktree that app is the first thing, he’s advertising, noting that there are already 15,000 travelers working on multiple meets ups right now.
And the results speak for themselves, having recently launched his app, he’s already hosted a successful live event organized completely within the JUST GO app. The app is so exciting to Binksy because it single-handedly allowed him to increase the frequency and speed at which he and his audience can organize events, and has created a new potential revenue stream for him to explore as his programming evolves.
Aaron Doughty's HighViber App
Aaron Doughty, is another highly successful Youtube content creator and online course creator who is embracing live events again. Aaron Doughty is an expert at helping people unlock their full potential. With over 1 million Youtube followers, he provides practical life-advice, and meditation, and his teachings expand people’s consciousness in ways they never expected.
Doughty launched his app, The HighViber Community, with the help of Mighty Pro in the Spring of 2021 as a way to bring all of his members together in one place to support and connect with one another. The HighViber App has helped Aaron’s business by connecting his members like never before and allowing him to offer courses and community together in a social learning experience.
His team told us a bit about why he invested in branded apps in the first place, “The ability to bring my customers together in one place has been what I’ve dreamed of since I started my business. 99% of the posts in the community are member-generated, and I especially love that members can locate other people who live nearby. Having my own app is incredible and my customers feel right at home.”
Now, Doughty is leveraging the growth he’s achieved through his branded apps and using them as a springboard to supplement his in-person live events. In May, Doughty is hosting a three-day live event called The Shift Experience in Austin Texas. The event will help attendees remove the blocks holding them back from embodying their life purpose through workshops, guest lectures, networking activities, and more.
His branded app will play a big role in this event by allowing attendees who can’t come to the event in-person to buy virtual tickets and tune-in wherever they are in the world. But this is a much more cunning move than simply allowing for more attendees.
By having the virtual experience supplementing the in-person event, Doughty can actually make the in-person event more exclusive with only 80 tickets, charge a higher price, and create a sense of FOMO as the ticket quickly sell out. And while he builds that momentum for the in-person event, he still doesn’t lose out on revenue by having his branded apps be another gateway to the experience.
Sadie Roberston Huff's LO Sister App
Sadie Robertson Huff is a New York Times best-selling author, speaker, TV star, and one of the world's most influential voices for young Christian women today, with over 4.6 million Instagram followers, national speaking tours, and a top-ranking podcast called, “WHOA, That’s Good.”
Live Original is Huff’s personal brand where she sells apparel, her blog, event tickets, her books, and markets her online community LO Sister. Partnering with Mighty Pro, Huff and her team created the LO Sister app completely under her Live Original branding as a way to connect her large audience together no matter where they are across iOS and Android apps. A key part of Huff’s business model is hosting large in-person conferences retreats for faith-based worship and ministry for her audience complete with guest speakers, multiple activities, live music, and more.
Huff’s team saw an opportunity to elevate their live event experiences by using the LO Sister app as the ultimate tool in connecting attendees together. The LO Sister community is comprised of young women from across the United States who are all trying to grow in their faith, and most of which are in college. In turn, members of the LO Sister community have a lot in common, similar struggles, goals, and ambitions, and while the conferences provide them a chance to meet other women like themselves, it’s incredibly easy to lose contact once the events are over.
The LO Sister app solvees the problem of keeping their community connected long after the conferences and retreats have ended. Instead of the conversation ending when the event wraps up, Huff encourages her attendees to keep the dialogue flowing by downloading her free app and sharing their experiences inside.
The branded app becomes an extension of the live event offering, something that allows attendees to experience moments again and kindle new connections with others who are just like them. Huff’s team told us they saw a 24% increase in new members following the end of a recent conference.
What can we learn from these three examples?
As you can see from these three exceptional examples of creators who are using branded apps to supplement their live events, the value of using an app is multifaceted. Iin the past, the moment your live event ended it was over, the attendees moved on with their lives, and often had not ideal ways of staying in contact with folks they met during your event. But that’s now the case anymore.
The benefits of using a branded app for your live events are far reaching but here are three points you can chew on before we let you go:
1. Branded apps continue the conversation. Across all three examples one thing is clear, having a branded app allows the dialogue you started in your live event to continue after it closes. This is important because the app becomes a gateway for you to target attendees for new opportunities whether it’s paid memberships, online courses, digital products, or something else. But it also allows your attendees to become members of a true community that is specific to their interests unlike the experience they might have on a typical social media platform.
2. Branded apps provide you flexibility in pricing and create FOMO. As we saw with Aaron Doughty’s The Shfit Experience event, when you have a branded app you can create a virtual experience to coincide the live event you’re hosting. The best part? You can have lower attendance in-person at a higher price and then offer virtual tickets for those who can’t attend.
3. Branded apps take the workload off of you. The third benefit that is implied across all of our examples is that when you have a branded app for your event some of the community organizing work is done for you. Instead of coordinating hundreds, maybe thousands, of attendees in a live setting, you can create robust programming guides and resources that are accessible within you app. On top of that, attendees can talk with one another and your team to solve problems or issues that may arise during the event.