Tips for using Visitors at events

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Whether or not you use Envoy Visitors at your front desk, it can be a great addition to events like meetups, small conferences, gatherings and more. One of our customers, RealSelf, even uses Visitors as a lead scanner at trade shows.

In this article, we’ve gathered some best practices for using Visitors at events. Depending on the type of event, you can mix and match the tips you need to be most successful.

Pair additional iPads

You can pair unlimited iPads to any Envoy Visitors location. Having multiple iPads means that multiple attendees can sign in at the same time. No matter how many iPads you pair to a single location, all attendees’ information will be visible on that one location’s dashboard. It’s easy to view at a glance or export after the event.

Important notes:

  • Standard and Premium plans support one Brother printer per location, no matter how many iPads are paired to that location. If multiple attendees sign-in at the same time, their badges will print in the order their entries were created.
  • The Enterprise plan supports multiple printers per location. With Enterprise, you can specify which iPad is associated with which printer. If you’re on Enterprise and would like to use this feature, please contact us for instructions.

Create an “Event” visitor type

Available on Envoy Premium & Enterprise Plans

When you have multiple visitor types, you can customize the sign-in flow based on a guest’s purpose of visit. Events are a great use-case for this feature.

Customize the sign-in flow

When creating an “Event” visitor type, you’ll want to think about the sign-in flow. Typically when you’re signing in large groups, you’ll want to create the quickest sign-in flow possible. Below we list a few recommendations on how to do so:

  • Sign-in fields: Are you able to remove a few sign-in fields? Typically for events, the fewer the better.
  • NDA: Is it possible to disable NDA signing for the “event” visitor type? Even if you need to hold your event in a certain area that does not require an NDA, it might be worth it to keep sign-in moving quickly.
    • If you do require an NDA, ensure it’s as short as possible to shorten reading time.
  • Photo: Is it alright to disable visitor photos for this event?

A note about host notifications: While you cannot disable host notifications per visitor type, there’s nothing stopping you from temporarily disabling host notifications during your event!

Just go to Visitors > Settings > Notifications, and disable host notifications. Then come back to your sign-in fields and delete the host field.

Hide and display “Event” visitor type

On your Visitors > Settings > Sign-in flow page, you can configure which visitor types appear on your iPad.

If only event visitors will be signing in during your event, you can simply change your settings right before the event—you can hide all other visitor types. This way, your guests will not see the visitor type screen at all. They’ll tap the “Tap to sign in” button and move straight to the sign-in fields screen.

  • Of course, you’ll need to change your visitor type settings back after your event.

But, if you’re having an event that happens during office hours, you’ll likely need to have all of your visitor types displayed on the iPad.

  • When displaying multiple visitor types, it’s best to be very specific with your visitor type names (like “Design meetup” instead of “event”) to ensure that each visitor knows which visitor type to select.

Use pre-registration

As a reminder, the pre-registration feature allows you to create invites for your expected visitors. It helps speed up sign-in, since visitor details appear automatically after the visitor types their name.

Pre-registration is only helpful for events when you know your attendees’ sign-in details in advance.

Create invites in bulk

Instead of filling out the invite form for each attendee, you can create multiple invites at once from your dashboard. Here’s how:

  1. Go to Visitors > Invites.
  2. Click “New invite.” You’ll be taken to the invite form.
  3. Select Bulk create invites from at the top navigation.
  4. Select the correct location and visitor type.
  5. You can either type in or paste the invite details in the grid below.
    • Tip: If you prefer to manually enter the information instead of pasting, note that the Arrival date column has a date picker, and the Host column will search your employee directory.
  6. Click “Create invites.”

Eventbrite integration

If you’re gathering attendee RSVPs via Eventbrite, you can use our Eventbrite integration to import attendee details directly into Visitors. Learn more.

Use the invite dashboard like a “clipboard”

If you’ve invited your event attendees using pre-registration, you’ll want to consult the invite dashboard as visitors start arriving. Depending on your sign-in requirements, your visitors may not need to use the iPad at all! With pre-registration, you can sign visitors in directly from the dashboard.

This method is comparable to a “clipboard” you see at a lot of event registration tables: The attendee will tell the event manager their name, and they’ll be “checked off the list.” When you use this method with Visitors, you’ll actually turn their invite into their entry. Here’s how:

  1. Go to Visitors > Invites.
  2. To sign in one invited visitor, locate their invite.
    • Click the ellipsis (…) icon to the right of the invite information.
    • From the dropdown, select “Sign in.”
  3. To sign in multiple invited visitors, select multiple invites by clicking the check boxes to the left of the name.
    • Click “Sign in” at the top.

When you turn a visitor’s invite into their entry, you do not have the chance to collect their signature on your NDA or capture their photo. But if you don’t requrie these for your event—go ahead and save the time!

Follow up with attendees

No matter if event attendees were invited in advance or simply signed in on the iPad, you’ll have a full list of event attendees stored in Envoy. You can simply keep this list for your records, or you can choose to follow up with attendees in a variety of ways.

Dashboard and exports

Your event attendees details will appear on your visitor log. You can view this data at any time by simply navigating back to the date and time of your event.

You can also export this data as a CSV file that contains each attendee’s sign-in details. Learn more about exporting visitor data.

MailChimp

Available on Envoy Premium & Enterprise Plans

Enable our MailChimp integration before your event is a great option if you’d like to keep your attendees on a mailing list. You can enable the MailChimp integration for specific visitor types (like “Events”) and even specify which list they are added to. Learn more.

Salesforce integration

Available on Envoy Premium & Enterprise Plans

If you plan to follow up with your event attendees as sales leads, you’ll want to enable our Salesforce integration before your event. When each attendee signs in, they’ll be added as a lead in your Salesforce account. As with the MailChimp integration, you can enable the Salesforce integration for specific visitor types, which helps keep clutter out of Salesforce. Learn more.

See who didn’t attend

If you invited your attendees using pre-registration, you can use the invites dashboard to see which expected attendees actually arrived and which did not. This is helpful if you’d like to send a targeted follow-up message to those who did not attend.

Invited attendees who did arrive will have a yellow bar to the left of their invite. Attendees who did arrive will have a green (signed in) or grey (signed in and signed out) bar to the left of their invite.

A note about offline mode

Event spaces can be notorious for finicky guest Wi-Fi. If iPads become disconnected from Wi-Fi for any reason, visitors can still sign in. Their entry information will stored locally on the iPad until it’s reconnected to Wi-Fi.

While offline, the visitor entries are stored on the iPad in a “queue.” When a network connection is reestablished, all queued entries will sync to your location in the order that they were created (oldest to newest).

When an iPad is offline, host notifications will not send, and invited visitor details will not appear upon sign-in. Badge printing may also be compromised.