Was That a success? I Think So?

February 8, 2015

Often we get sucked into tracking the obvious measures of success for an event (e.g. Likes, Followers, Opens, Visitors, etc.). However, we should be asking ourselves, “Does this really matter to us?”  Do you really care if you have 10,000 likes on your Facebook page if those likes came from 10 year olds who will never attend your event? Probably not.

Keeping your business goals in mind will help you uncover the metrics that do matter to you. Do you just want live bodies in the seats or do you want engagement and interaction from the audience?  The number of attendees may not matter, but the number of questions and discussions started during a session could be very valuable in measuring the success of a session or guest speaker event.

Once you figure out what you would like to measure, you can put tools in place to capture this data.  Often we are so busy worrying about planning for an event, creating a marketing campaign or making a deadline that we never think about how we will know if the event is a success in the end. 

Thinking about this after the fact is too late. How to measure success should be discussed in the early stages of planning an event. Then the proper measurement tools and analytics can be put in place to track your predetermined success factors. 

However, tracking data doesn’t have to be a daunting task. If you are using event management software, a lot of data may already be collected about your exhibitor and attendee activities. You may be able to customize visual dashboards to show you how many exhibitors are updating their booth profiles, buying sponsorships and engaging with attendees. All of the collected data and dashboard summaries can provide insight on how your booth sales process, sponsorship sales and marketing campaigns are doing. 

Your system may also offer Google analytics tracking that can allow you to see where exhibitors and attendees are going on your website (and mobile app), along with how they are engaging on it.  This can be infinitely helpful in determining what type of content and tools are important to them.

There are many tools available for tracking data, including tools for tracking all of your social media activity. Determining what specific data will correctly measure your event’s success is crucial when it comes to selecting the best event management solution.  Make sure this is an essential step when setting your business goals.

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Partner Voices

Modern events accumulate huge amounts of data.  Turning that data into an understanding of your audience in order to build attendance can be overwhelming.  Fortunately, business analytics tools like CDS’ Data Sense® can do the heavy lifting, combining your different data sources for a detailed view of your event and audience.  Introducing the Persona Tree!