Measuring the Success of Your Events

During the summer months, the rate of government events tends to slow down, presenting a great time for reflection and planning. With this in mind, we wanted to outline some thoughts on how to measure the success of events. Whether it's setting goals for future events or looking back on past events, these tips will help ensure everyone is informed on what success looks like.

  • Set Clear, Specific Goals and a Call-to-Action - Events are a piece of an overall marketing strategy and serve as a way to advance the brand and drive business. While setting goals around revenue and attendance are important, each event should also have a post-event call to action tied to it. What do you want attendees to do after they leave? Buy a product? Schedule a meeting? Attend another event? Clearly define this goal and ensure that the event is planned with this desired result in mind.
  • Measure Twice - While overall satisfaction scores gathered through surveys are important, it is also critical to measure satisfaction across different elements of the event. This includes speakers, venue, food, timing/logistics, registration, cost, staff, and more. An overall satisfaction score could be pulled down by just one element or by a combination of multiple elements. Knowing the satisfaction, or dissatisfaction, in each element helps pinpoint the biggest opportunities for improvement.
  • Dig into Social - If you highlighted social interaction as part of your event (or even if you didn't) take a look at what was said over social media. Go beyond the number of shares, likes, and hashtag mentions and look at the sentiment. Were attendees simply saying they were there or were they excited enough about what they were hearing to share soundbites from speakers and thoughts on the event content?
  • Missed Numbers Doesn't Mean Failure - If the event went over budget or did not bring in the expected revenue, it does not mean that it was a failure. These numbers indicate a need for more informed planning and forecasting. Look at what you may have gained beyond the bottom line. How much did you increase the number of opt-in email addresses gathered through the event? Did event content generate social media buzz and/or media coverage?

We'd love to hear your thoughts on what signals success for your organization and how you measure it. Let us know in the comments.

Don’t End Up on the Naughty List

As meeting and event planners, it is easy to get caught up in the day-to-day work of planning, publicizing, and measuring events. However, this can often lead to overlooking some of the basics or getting caught in the "that's the way we've always done it" trap. Looking around the web for advice, we found five tips on ways to avoid common event failures.

  1. Make them "Just do it" - every communication you send out should have a call to action. Even a 'Save the Date' can invite potential attendees to download a promo code or register to attend a pre-event webinar. Don't let them click by your emails--make sure there is something in it for them.
  2. Be practical - make it easy for attendees. Include details on parking, public transport, nearby hotels, restaurants, and dress code. This will build goodwill among attendees when they realize they don't have to do independent research to figure out the basic logistics they need to attend your event.
  3. Search for the best deal - while most event planners are shrewd negotiators, it can be easy to get complacent when a price seems "fair." Be it printing, venue, or catering, always make a final ask of vendors to ensure you are getting the best price. Think about ways you could compensate vendors with advertising in exchange for lower rates.
  4. Make metrics measurable - make sure revenue and attendance goals are reasonable and achievable. Look for multiple ways to survey attendees (online, in-person, social channels) to get a bigger number and range of feedback on your event.
  5. Take it with you - in a content-centric marketing world, organizations are always looking for something to share and events are ripe with information. Make sure to capture all of the content presented at your event either through recordings, notes, or speaker materials.

    Then you can use it for the weeks and months after the event ends. One keynote can become three or more blog posts. A panel discussion could be re-broadcast as a podcast. A number of related sessions could be combined into a whitepaper.

 

We'd love to hear from you. What are some of the biggest "gotcha" traps you see events and their erstwhile planners fall into?

On the Right Track? Tracking your Event Campaigns

Of course all smart event organizers track key metrics like registrants, attendance, budget, and profit but many times those metrics are never tied back to the individual marketing campaigns. While it may be easy to smile and say the overall goals were met - we were a success, it is important to take another look at how they were met. As much as possible each piece of public outreach should be able to be measured.

Emails -- Which emails got the most opens? Was there something different in those subject lines? What was the offer within the email? Was there a certain time of day or week that performed better? Find the common ties between the high opens as well as the commonalities among the low opens. For future events, do more of what worked and less of what did not.

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Green Data Centre Conference & Exhibition | London UK

Originally posted on AOL Energy by Jared Anderson

Optimizing facilities to be more energy efficient saves money and can help corporations meet sustainability targets. Data centers are one area where significant energy saving improvements can often be made and the Green Data Centre Conference and Exhibition offers data center managers and engineers an opportunity to lean about the latest innovations in the rapidly changing sector.

The event provides an intimate setting within which to network and share ideas with roughly 100 peers, experts and thought leaders. Here are a few of the topics that will be discussed:

  • Determine best practices necessary for the continued success of your data centre operations and management - including metrics, measurement and metering insights and evaluations
  • Examine the financial complexities of the data centre including budgeting, financing and real estate considerations
  • Discuss the risk vs. rewards and determine the realities vs. the hype of cloud computing and how it affects the data centre

For more expert analysis, thought leadership and discussions about the top stories in the electricity sector today, visit AOL Energy.