Case Study: InGo —Social Event Marketing

May 27, 2017 · 8 min read

InGo is a social third-party platform that organically grows events by empowering attendees to invite their friends and colleagues while lowering the attendee acquisition costs for event organizers.

I joined InGo as the the lead UX designer and the 6th employee in December of 2013, and departed in January of 2015. I was in charge of the product and user experience but as most early stage startups, I designed UIs, websites, reports, social media content, and other graphic collateral.

InGo’s offering comes in the form of widgets which provides value to attendees by:

  1. Enabling fast and easy event registration.
  2. Displaying other attendees, including contacts who are attending.
  3. Suggesting contacts that may be interested in attending.

The Problem

The Goals

  1. Show results and insights to organizers about their event and audience (analytics platform)

1. Design the Attendee Experience

The Login Widget

The Social Sign On Problem

The Process

Legacy Login Widget

I placed myself in the attendee’s shoes, it became clear there were no stated benefits as to why register socially. How am I supposed to know that it will save me time or that I could find out if any of my friends are attending? All the persuasive copy was hidden behind the “Tell me more” button.

With my hypothesis in mind, I made the following decisions:

  • Removed the “Tell me more” button and added copy explaining the benefits of social registration up front.
  • Addressed privacy concerns by providing the option to opt out of sharing your attendance publicly and auto-posting on your behalf
  • Visually de-emphasized the manual registration- moving button to bottom (version A, B) or signaling hassle up front in hopes of swaying people away (version C)

As I kept incorporating customer feedback, the copy become more succinct, and the widget was refined stylistically, we saw social adoption take off instantly.

Login Widget on an event page

Levering Psychology

I started experimenting with applying psychology principles to further entice attendees to register socially. I featured the top 5 most influential attendees of the week on the Login Widget not just for social proof but as a clever growth catalyst; those featured would get an email congratulating them, with a call to action to share their accomplishment and thus increasing awareness. Unfortunately, I wasn’t able to test this iteration’s performance live during my stay.

Social Widget

Once an attendee has socially signed on and completed the registration process, they encounter the Social Widget which provides 3 functionalities:

  • Invite- allows the attendee to invite relevant contacts
  • Who’s In- shows if attendee’s contacts are attending, along with everyone who registered through InGo and chose to be discoverable.
  • Share- allows attendees to share their attendance on social networks.


Given that the width of the widget couldn’t exceed 300px, it was very busy visually, avatars were small, text was crammed, and there were too many calls to action.

The Process

I made the following design decisions:

  • I enlarged the images of the attendees as they are the most attention grabbing elements
  • spaced out the elements to give them some breathing room
  • reduced the functionality to by shifting suggestion up top
  • reduced visual pollution: there were way too many horizontal lines which made it hard to visually grasp elements

Many iterations later, a more refined and simplified design began emerging that was stylistically in synch with the Login Widget:


I eventually also got around to designing an expanded version of the social widget, since confirmation pages provided more screen real estate:


Power in Social Hierarchies: by observing communication response time between people, a power hierarchy can be mapped out; the more important someone is, the quicker people respond to him or her.

Asking for Permission

In order to make sense of it all, I mapped out the logic behind permissions:

Timing was critical- ask for permission out of context and a user will likely decline it. The legacy interaction asked for all 3 permissions initially which resulted in poor conversions. Using strategic timing, I was able to obtain much higher acceptance rates: for example, asking permission to post on a user’s timeline only when they’re at the share screen, as any other time wouldn’t make sense contextually and might scare off the user.

I mapped out the permission prompts on a user journey to determine the best time to ask users for each permission:

I also mapped out the process behind the major registration platforms to inform my decisions:

InGo’s Platform

The platform is a way to show InGo’s value to event organizers by providing them with realtime, actionable social analytics, and insight to their event and audience. It could also provide exhibitors with the ability to capture and analyze sales leads.

The Problem

Design Process

Organizers could also learn about their most influential attendees with metrics like: number of contacts, impressions served, invites sent, posts shared and converts.

I sketched out the initial product features with wireframes, ran internal workshops for feedback before arriving at initial designs:

Social Emails


“You can’t improve that which you can’t measure”

One of my biggest mistakes was not quantifying results often, as the blatantly obvious success made me content . InGo saw obvious improvements across the board, from social sign on conversions, to invites and posts, which I wish I would’ve kept track of since day 1. Here are the KPIs we measured internally the month before my departure.

11.88% Advocates (attendees who signed on socially / total attendees)

9.8% Acquisitions (attendees acquired through InGo / total attendees)

248.14% Invitations (sent through InGo / Advocates)

40.84% Posts (posted through InGo / Advocates)

By very conservative measures, every single metric has at least doubled, in some cases tripled during my stay at InGo.

Lessons & Mistakes

  • Not testing often- there was a Social Widget iteration I shipped without running it by users. The number of complaints skyrocketed due to the lack of button affordability. It was a valuable lesson which led me to form a select customer group to test designs before releasing.
  • Not enough research early on- “If I had 6 hours to cut down a tree, I’d spend the first 4 sharpening my axe” -the quote sums up my newfound stance on research very early in the process.
  • Poor interaction of “Who’s In”- It burdens the users to work for information, by hovering from photo to photo as they learn who’s attending. Photos by themselves don’t tell users important info like name, role or company, which should’ve been always visible.

Other Work


Svilen's Realm

My concepts, designs & inventions

Svilen's Realm

I invent, design and craft experiences and solutions ranging from reimagining the mundane to protecting fundamental human rights. I share my visions with the world through the language of design, film, and writing.


Written by


Speculative Designer | creator of &

Svilen's Realm

I invent, design and craft experiences and solutions ranging from reimagining the mundane to protecting fundamental human rights. I share my visions with the world through the language of design, film, and writing.

Medium is an open platform where 170 million readers come to find insightful and dynamic thinking. Here, expert and undiscovered voices alike dive into the heart of any topic and bring new ideas to the surface. Learn more

Follow the writers, publications, and topics that matter to you, and you’ll see them on your homepage and in your inbox. Explore

If you have a story to tell, knowledge to share, or a perspective to offer — welcome home. It’s easy and free to post your thinking on any topic. Write on Medium

Get the Medium app

A button that says 'Download on the App Store', and if clicked it will lead you to the iOS App store
A button that says 'Get it on, Google Play', and if clicked it will lead you to the Google Play store