Recently, DoubleDutch, a mobile applications developer that was one of the first to introduce game strategy into the (primarily) corporate event environment, announced that it received venture capital funding in the amount of $4 million. The cash will help the company expand the marketing and development of their mobile platform, which now includes on-site lead retrieval, post-event sales tracking and ongoing customer relationship management. The new DoubleDutch mobile platform takes advantage of four key technology trends impacting face-to-face events in its quest to go where no lead retrieval app has gone before.
The mobilization of everything from wayfinding to conference agendas to matchmaking has been the “shock and awe” story at events for almost two years. What DoubleDutch has developed is new in the field of mobile, lead-retrieval apps. For one thing, the platform is no longer event-centric. It leverages the event to initiate the sales cycle—nothing new there—but remains functional through the sales conversion phase and into the post-event CRM phase. And, did I mention it’s all mobile?
DoubleDutch hasn’t abandoned the gaming elements that made the event industry take notice of its platform in the first place. In fact, the game layer is crucial for collecting data about attendee interests and stimulating post-event enterprise engagement. “We are doubling down on gamification and social engagement. The behaviors that are gamified are thirteen times more likely to be performed than behaviors that are not gamified,” says Lawrence Coburn, founder and CEO of DoubleDutch.
Coburn envisions a mobile platform nimble enough to take on bigger tasks. “We think there is a larger trend called the ‘deconstruction of software.’ In the past, software has had hundreds of features that didn’t play well in the mobile world. We will see these monolithic CRM systems becoming smaller pieces,” he says. Hence, the introduction of DoubleDutch’s three-part “mobile CRM suite” that reduces the gargantuan lead retrieval/sales conversion/CRM process into bite-sized chunks.
The game layer and social engagement functionality of DoubleDutch’s suite serve a higher purpose. “The social and gamification elements cause a lot of engagement. Every touch is a clue about where [attendees] want to spend their money. How can we turn that engagement into actionable data?” Coburn asks. The DoubleDutch platform converts game play during the event into data points that enable sales conversions.
The Takeaway: DoubleDutch has managed to do what none of the other event lead-retrieval apps has done yet—provide an end-to-end solution that begins at the event and ends with the customer. Corporate event strategists should be (and are) interested in this new iteration of mobile event applications, but third-party trade show and conference organizers should also take notice. DoubleDutch has added exhibitor ROI to the list of justifications for deploying a mobile event solution and for that reason it differentiates itself in a crowded field of competitors.