Improve the ROI of Your Next Event

While digital marketing is changing the way we reach and engage our audiences, research shows that face-to-face contact is still how business gets done. Events are effective, but because of long sales cycles and multiple customer touchpoints, quantifying their success is more challenging.

This article from ClickZ  outlines several ideas for measuring the success of your next in-person event… and relates it to attributable revenue. I’ll list a few of my favorite tips below along with some my own.

  • Number of leads/business cards collected.
    Expert tip suggests jotting down a personal note (his son plays violin) and professional note (he’s interested in XYZ services) on the back of each card. This makes it easier for you and your team to follow-up and stand out from others after the event.
  • Number of attendees. How many people were there? how does that compare to your goal?
  • Attendee composition. Are you reaching the right people? If 70% or more of the people were in your target audience, you’ve done well.
  • Revenue. Suggest putting attendees into company system and tag them as attendees for this event. Do a baseline pull after the event, then every three months to see how revenue among those accounts grew above forecast.
  • Generate Feedback. The feedback you get right away at the end of an event is different from what you’ll hear once attendees have gone home, mulled over it, discussed it with coworkers, and crystallized their thinking. So field a questionairre card during the event and send a followup email two days later.
    **Keep surveys short (more more than seven rating scale questions) and Ask about overall satisfaction with the event, favorite/least favorite sessions. Offer an incentive like a gift bag at event after survey complete, then a free ebook/webinar to increase response rate with follow up survey.
  • Meetings Booked. Look beyond attendee counts to track the number of follow-up meetings you were able to secure within 30 days of the event.
  • Downloads, view and share. What you content accessible online after the event? How much of a role did social media have before, during and after the event? Track downloads of material and quality of conversations with sources like HootSuite and Facebook/Twitter analytics. Also if you are going to offer original content, gate the download to capture their contact information first.
  • Increased Engagement rates. Track the bump in your open rate, click-through rate, website visits and share rates after the event.
  • Sales Feedback. Through you may not always like your employees feedback, its better to ask and make improvements than to not ask and risk making the same event mistakes. Surveying your internal attendees could help bolster or provide counterpoint to other survey feedback, ensuring your next event will be more successful.

And finally, think about how many attendees come to your next event? Repeat attendance and new guests via word of  mouth is the best marketing to start your next event right.

What have you found to be effective ways for measuring your ROI after events? Would you agree with these or do you think there are other factors to consider?

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About promotionalguru

A marketing communications professional helping other marketing professionals, business leaders and marketing students gain a better understanding of trends in advertising and public relations as well as tips for being a successful marketer.

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