MIT Technology Review, EmTech Digital 2015

Success story with Whova
MIT Tech Review EmTech Digital San Francisco 2015

Executive Summary

MIT Technology Review partnered with Whova to mobilize event information and quickly create a digital community connecting all participants in the EmTech Digital 2015 conference, generating thousands of networking actions among the attendees.

About EmTech Digital 2015

The EmTech Digital (formerly Digital Summit) is a prestigious conference hosted by MIT Technology Review, an independent media company owned by the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. The company produces publications read by millions of business leaders, innovators, thought leaders, and early adopters around the globe. Every year the conference attracts hundreds of business/technology/innovation insiders who are interested in discovering emerging opportunities in the digital economy. The EmTech Digital 2015 was a 2-day event (June 1-2, 2015) located in St. Regis Hotel, San Francisco.


The EmTech Digital team did a great job in organizing the conference, and marketing it through a variety of digital channels (e.g., press release, social media, event website, etc.), thus attracted quite a few hundred attendees in short amount of time.

In order to engage with these attendees and create a better networking experience for them, the team surrounded by Amy Lammers decided to partner with us and used the Whova mobile event app. However, there were several challenges to achieve the goals:

1. Not enough time to implement the app. Amy’s team made the final decision to use our app on May 18th, which was less than two weeks away from the event.

2. Push attendees to download the app. On May 26, Amy successfully submitted the app, leaving the Whova team only a week to take care of the rest things, the most critical one was how to let event attendees know about the app, download and use it.

3. Connect speakers with attendees. There were 34 speakers, many of whom are from technology giants like Google, Oracle, etc. The question was how to bridge these speakers with attendees and create a community that benefits both parties.


With the swift and creative services provided by our Whova team, and the intelligently unique values our product offer, we overcame the challenges in a perfect manner. Here is how we did:

1. The Organizer Dashboard within our product is extremely easy to set up, so Amy was able to quickly familiarize herself about the platform, later uploaded all event information and submitted the app for review. Right after that, our team responded promptly and made the event active on the app. The whole process was done within only a week. This is almost impossible if she used any alternate event apps.

2. To motivate attendees to download the app, we leveraged our unique technology and the team creativity. On one hand, the SmartProfile technology we possess allows us to quickly populate all attendee profiles for the EmTech Digital conference and makes it easy for attendees to verify in only one click. On the other hand, we provided Amy a 1-page flyer and slide which she used to introduce the event app to the attendees. The materials include the app benefits for the attendees, and the passcode Amy set on the dashboard which was used for walk-in attendees to access the event information. It turned out the two strategies combined worked out very well to push app downloads.

3. Whova’s interactive agenda makes it super easy for the conference attendees to find out interesting sessions by viewing speaker bios and session descriptions, best of all, they can check in, favorite or comment under each session; Meanwhile, speakers can join the conversation as well, or even send in-app messages to specific audience privately. Note: this kind of event engagement is so powerful that you are able to utilize it before, during and even after the conference.



# of weeks used to build the app

# attendees used the app

# of Agenda Views

# of Attendee Profile Views


The Whova app was great! We’ve got a lot of people used it and signed in, and the speakers loved the attention they got through the app.

Amy Lammers

VP, Events and Strategic Partnerships, MIT Technology Review

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