Different Ways to Measure Event Success


Success can sometimes be a matter of perspective.  An event that fails to generate immediate cash returns could seem like a failure from a sales perspective, but if it generates a ton of targeted leads, it may be a smashing success from the marketing team’s point of view.  The point is that there are different ways to measure success.

When it comes to hosting meetings and events, it’s imperative that you find meaningful ways to measure success, not only so you can justify planning future events, but so you can find ways to improve on every experience, fueling future successes.  A reputable and experienced global event company like American Meetings, Inc. (AMI) can help you to pinpoint and track the metrics that matter to you.

How do you know what facets of your event to track so you can compile a gauge of your ultimate success?

Here are several different ways to approach the process of calculating the success of your meeting or event. 

Cash Money

Cash is king – there’s simply no denying the appeal of profit.  Some events are geared toward selling, through ticket sales, prod

Uct/service sales, or both, and in such cases, tracking profits is a major measure of relative success.

However, if you’re spending more money than you’re making, you’re going to have to work harder to find ways to label your event a success.  This is why it’s so important to work with your event management company to track other aspects of your event, as well.  Not every meeting or conference has profit as the top priority.

You may be looking to expand brand awareness with media coverage and social sharing, or you might want to generate leads.  However, if you want to prove success where your many goals are concerned, it is essential to find ways to track progress, especially if you don’t expect to break even from event registration, the sale of products or services during the event, and so on.  Regardless, you definitely need to track profits.

Event Registration

How many people are signing up to attend your event?  If it’s an annual event, did you see more people clamoring to register than in years past, or has attendance dropped for some reason?  Are you opening more spots for additional attendees?  Do you have a ballpark figure

for the number of guests that would constitute a successful outcome?  Are you tracking customers versus professionals like industry and media attendees?

Whether this is your first time hosting an event or your meeting or conference has happened annually for the last 20 years, the number of people showing up matters, as does the makeup of the crowd, including returning patrons versus new leads.  Gathering data about numbers and categories of attendees could help you to determine whether you and your event company have successfully reached certain goals.

Event Company Tabulations of Customer Satisfaction

Here’s a question you should ask after every event: did the attendees enjoy it?  If guests don’t enjoy themselves, they’re not only unlikely to attend future events, but they certainly won’t act as brand ambassadors and generate new recruits.  How can you even gauge customer satisfaction as a measure of success?  There are several ways.

You could monitor social media and see what event attendees are posting to gauge relative satisfaction.  For more direct measurement, you can create surveys with targeted questions and the option for guests to make suggestions.  Your event management company could even supply facial recognition technology, posting cameras throughout your event to assess facial expressions and chart positive versus ambivalent or negative emotions.

Says Florencia Meindl, Meeting Manager at AMI, “It doesn’t really matter how many people register or how much money you make if attendees don’t enjoy the event.  In order to create a platform for future success, you need to impress attendees so they talk you up on social media and create a level of FOMO that ensures greater demand to attend your next event.”

Event Management Tracking of Media Coverage

Not all meetings and events are open to the public or the media, but if you’re looking for coverage and sharing, you and your event company definitely need to track your presence in both traditional and social media channels.  You should track press coverage across channels (print, radio, TV, and online) and pay attention to what people are saying on social media, as well, including the stance of content and the number of likes and shares.

An expert in modern event management like AMI can help you to find the metrics that matter most to you and find the most effective and efficient ways to track them in order to measure event success and improve in the future.

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