Last year, we wrote about the Protection of Personal Information Act (POPI), and why event managers can’t afford to ignore the potentially devastating effect that non-compliance can have on their business. While there’s been a lot of talk about the POPI Act in mainstream media, many companies aren’t yet up to speed with the minutiae of this law. One of the most important things you (and many others) may have failed to take into account is that all of your services and suppliers need to be POPI compliant too.

As far as online invitations are concerned, the POPI Act has separated the men from the boys, so to speak.

One of the most important qualities of an online invitations service is POPI compliance. Many online invitation providers may purport to be the best in the industry, but even the most beautiful  Pinterest-worthy designs don’t make up for non-compliance. In short, make sure your online invitations services is first and foremost, POPI compliant.

That said, merely because an online invitation service complies with POPI, doesn’t mean that they’re the best online invitation service out there. So what makes us better than the rest?

1. Our online invitation software facilitates ROI.

Your events need to result in a return on investment, which means that your online invitations have to land up in the right inboxes, pique the interest of your guests and then persuade them to attend your event. We’ve created software that enables you to do just this. How? Via the use of a vetted email provider (we’re white-listed with Sendgrid), professional graphic designers and wordsmiths worth their weight in gold.

2. Our software is driven by innovative technology.

If you want to cast your brand in the most professional light possible, you need cutting-edge tools at your disposal. Our RSVP software can be accessed remotely; runs on iPad, tablets or mobiles; entails the use of QR codes and can be customised according to your brand’s needs.

3. Our clients are industry heavyweights.

We provide the best online invitation service to international brands like Audi, FNB, McDonald’s, Standard Bank, Visa, Volkswagen, and more. Our online invitations are used and endorsed by the best of the best to successfully attract guests to their events, time and time again.

4. Our software enables you to gather vital consumer insight.

The more you know about your target market, the better. We’re the only company who offers software that facilitates ERM™(Event Relationship Management). In short, our event management software not only allows you to orchestrate streamlined events, it gathers crucial information about your guests too.

Image credit – Qdtricks

It has become the norm to send online invitations with RSVP functionality for both personal and corporate events. As a result there are many companies that offer an online invitation service. The difference in functionality and service differ dramatically between the various providers of online invitations with a RSVP function utility so we have assembled a list of things to help you evaluate the various suppliers in the market today.

Is there an RSVP function linked to the online invitations?

The first thing to check is whether the supplier is offering only online invitations or if they are offering full online invitations with RSVP. There are many suppliers with websites that allow you to create amazing online invitations, some even allow you to add a soundtrack to your invitation, but the majority of these suppliers do not allow you to capture a response.

This means that you can send out your professional looking online invitations but when it comes to your guests replying, they have to default to sending you an email reply. This is not professional and it would require someone to manually sort through all the replies and capture them into a spreadsheet of sorts.

Online invitations with RSVP must capture more than just the standard response of “yes I am coming”

The most important information you need to know when someone responds to your online invitation with RSVP is whether or not they will be attending your event, but this is by no means all you need to know.

Depending on what type of event you are hosting you may need to know dietary requirements or for instance, on a wedding online invitation you are sometimes asked “what song would you like the DJ to play for you at our wedding”.

It is important to note, when evaluating the various online rsvp companies, whether they allow you to ask as many questions on the RSVP form as you need.

Which brands trust and make use of the online invitation company you are considering?

One of the fool proof ways of checking to see if the online invitation company you are considering using is any good is to have a look at who their past and current clients are.

If the online invitation company has references from big brands you know that these brands would be tasked with hosting large events in highly competitive environments. These events would require the highest level of professionalism and the big brand would have done their homework before selecting the online invitations company.

At the RSVP Agency, not only do our online invitations come with RSVP functionality, but we also have an impressive list of clients. Have a look at our portfolio and clientele:

Send online invitations and reminders by email and text message

Once online invitations have been setup and the accompanying online rsvp website is ready with all the fields that you need, the next step in the process is to send out the online invitation via email.

In addition, you may want to send out reminder emails leading up to the event Post event, you are also likely to want to send thank you emails to everyone that attended. There may also be a requirement to send out text message reminders to all your guests.

Ensuring that the online invitations software that you are considering using has the ability to send emails and text messages should be an additional evaluation criterion in your selection process.

Don’t let technology bells and whistles distract your decision-making process

As many online invitations solutions have been designed by people with an IT background, they often offer features that may sound amazing but lack practicality.

In particular if you are forming a long-term strategic partnership with a supplier of online invitations with RSVP functionality, be sure to question them on their background. In our experience it is the systems that have been conceptualised by event managers for event managers that are the best.