Connecting over 10,000 hotels, theme parks, and dining locations
The Florida Restaurant and Lodging Association (FRLA) is one of the nation’s largest hospitality trade associations. They represent over 10,000 Florida hotels, theme parks, and dining locations. In order to plan and promote the various events, conferences, and meetings that a large member association typically hosts, they decided on a mobile application for keeping their members informed and engaged. They needed an application that could not only schedule events and connect guests, but measure and quantify event success.
Before working with Cuttlesoft, the association tried other solutions that were either repackaged or generic COTS (Commercial-off-the-Shelf) software. It didn’t take long to realize that without a fully custom solution, their imaginations were limited. The previous apps lacked the flexibility the FRLA required and failed to effectively engage their membership.
Furthermore, previous solutions lacked any CMS (Content Management System), usage analytics, or targeted messaging, frustrating the FRLA’s hardworking marketing team. They knew they needed a custom application, but they wanted to work with a team that could be hospitable to their needs.
That’s where Cuttlesoft came in.
The team knew that a data-driven approach was the only way to produce what the FRLA really needed. That’s why they started by holding meetings with FRLA’s marketing group to learn exactly where the previous solutions had failed. Finding the right solutions meant deeply understanding the challenges first.
Having just redone their website, the team was using it as the primary way to get information to their members. The new frla.org website was developed on a popular CMS framework, so to make life easier — Cuttlesoft integrated the CMS with it.
Marketing and event coordinators only need to enter information about something once, on their website. The CMS then automatically copies that data over and updates members’ smartphone apps. This means that the mobile application can work offline – a feature that comes in handy since the Internet connection at large events is typically unreliable.
FRLA also needed to connect with members, discretely. Having 26 Chapters throughout the state of Florida meant that notifying members in Key West about the Pensacola Chapter’s upcoming board meeting just wouldn’t work. The FRLA app needed targeted notifications that would allow the marketing team to engage the appropriate users, and connect users to the information they found relevant.
So, the Cuttlesoft team built a push notification system that allowed for segmented Geo-Targeting. The feature is so precise that notifications can be sent to users the moment they walk into a conference center!