The Florida Restaurant and Lodging Association uses a custom CMS and Mobile Application to connect their network of over 10,000 Florida hotels, theme parks, and dining locations. Cuttlesoft helps them do it with confidence.
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.
The team at Cuttlesoft is innovative, flexible, and customer-service driven. For us, it was a breath of fresh air. Dan Murphy VP of Membership, FRLA
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.
No service? No problem.
Marketing and event coordinators only need to enter information about an something once, on their website. The CMS then automatically copies that data over and updates members’ smart phone apps. This means that the mobile application can work offline – a feature that comes in handy since 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!
We knew that a standard, off-the-shelf event app wouldn't work. They didn't need an event app. They needed to connect their membership. And do it in such a way that was integral to their processes, and measurable.
The new-and-improved FRLA mobile app launched in November 2015. Since then, downloads have increased 400% and the number of monthly active users has doubled. Best of all, this usage data is readily available to stakeholders right inside the app’s convenient CMS!
Thanks to Cuttlesoft, the Florida Restaurant and Lodging Association can now easily keep their members informed and engaged. Instead of having to “shoehorn” their needs into a template, they now have a custom solution that can grow and evolve with the changing needs of their association.
Cuttlesoft connects the dots for you. If you're looking for a unique solution to better connect with your members, hire us.