What Data Should You Use to Measure ROI from Your Events?
What Data Should You Use to Measure ROI from Your Events?
Measuring the return on investment, or ROI, for an event can be a pretty difficult thing to nail down.
Your event had a lot of attendees and “felt” successful, but what did you actually achieve? Were the results worth the time, effort and money invested in putting the event on?
The key to figuring this out is to collect data. Lots and lots of data. The more you measure when you are looking at your event, the more knowledge you will have about how it performed. Knowledge is power. You can use the insights gained from the data to create a more effective event next time.
But which data is most important to look at when you measure ROI from your events? Let’s look at some of the crucial data points you need to examine when it comes to your event ROI.
Of course, one of the most important aspects of every event is the revenue it generates. After all, brands wouldn’t be able to afford to keep holding events if they didn’t bring in an income.
Keep in mind that gross revenue is not the single most important factor when you are measuring event success. Your gross revenue means nothing if you don’t factor in your event’s total cost.
Eventbrite offers a formula for calculating this:
[(Total Event Sales Revenue – Total Cost of the Event) ÷ Total Cost of the Event] x 100 = Event ROI
For example, if your event ROI is 100%, that means you doubled your investment.
All the revenue from the event doesn’t necessarily have to come from ticket sales. It can also include increases in sales or donations to a cause. In order to track your event expenses, we recommend using event budgeting software. (Or, you can work with a professional to help manage your event budget.)
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Your event attendance can be one of the most important metrics to look at when you are analyzing ROI from your events. You should be comparing attendee numbers year over year to see how much your event is growing.
But it’s not enough to simply look at the numbers. It’s also important to note who registered for the event compared to who actually attended. If you find that there is a major discrepancy between the registrants and attendees, this can indicate that you are losing interest somewhere along the way..
You’ll be able to look at your process and see what is going on, so that you can retain more attendees between the registration stage and the actual event.
Another important goal when hosting an event is to generate leads for your business. It’s crucial to look at whether or not the event is actually generating leads for your company.
During the event, try to collect the emails of any qualified leads so that you can follow up with them later. One effective way to do this is to offer free swag for anyone who shares their email or leaves their business card.
Be sure you focus on getting the emails of people who are part of your target audience and interested in your business. Otherwise, you’ll spend a lot of time following up with leads who are simply tire-kickers.)
Once you follow up with the leads generated at your event, you can keep a record of which ones turn into customers or clients. This data will help you to understand whether or not the event delivered ROI when it comes to sales leads.
Another type of data you’ll want to look at when measuring the ROI of your events is your website traffic. An event can be a very effective way to drive traffic to your website. Depending on what you do, an increase in web traffic can help you generate leads, sell more products, and get more donations or registrations for future events.
To measure your web traffic, you’ll need to look at some type of analytics program – such as JetPack for WordPress or Google Analytics. Don’t just look at the number of visitors. You’ll also want to measure:
- Bounce Rate: How many people are visiting your website yet leaving after only viewing one page?
- Sources: Where are the visitors to your website coming from? The event app? Social media? Search engines? Your email campaign?
- Percent of New Sessions: How many visitors are new and can be attributed as a direct result of the event.
A one-off surge in traffic during an event won’t benefit you much if you don’t give these visitors a reason to come back. Make sure you are capturing subscriptions to your email list or followers on social media, so that you can stay in touch.
Social Media Interaction and Followers
Another interesting metric to take a look at after your event is your increase in social media engagement and following. Social media growth can have a positive impact on your business long term. The more people follow you on social media, the more will attend your events, buy from you, etc.
There are many ways you can collect this data. You can encourage your guests to engage with you on social media by using a hashtag for the event. You can also use the native analytics tools within each social media website – such as Twitter analytics and Facebook page insights. There are also several different types of third party social media management software which will reveal analytics for your social media accounts.
Not sure where to start? Contact us – we’ll be happy to guide you through the process!
Another metric to consider when you measure ROI from your events is whether or not your sponsors saw success at your event. This will make it easier to prove ROI to future sponsors and demonstrate that it absolutely IS worth getting involved with your event.
You can look at data such as the number of impressions on their banner ads, total clicks on social media promotions, and more. You can also measure how many page views came to the sponsor’s company page from your event app or your official event page.
What’s one of the best ways you can gather data on whether or not your attendees loved your event? Ask them!
A post-event survey is a great way to gather qualitative data on attendee satisfaction at your events. Ask your guests whether they enjoyed the speakers, the catering, the venue and the way the event was planned and structured. You can also ask them for their critical feedback on what you can improve next time.
This feedback from attendees is incredibly valuable. It will help you learn exactly what you need to do next time to improve the success and ROI of your events.
Bottom Line: Analyzing Event Data is Important
Crunching the numbers and looking at several different aspects of your event data is essential for understanding the ROI of your events. When you take the time to study this data, you’ll learn a lot about what worked best and what you can improve.
Need some help with your event data?
We pride ourselves on being able to expertly analyze event data to help our clients make the most of their corporate events. To learn more about our services, contact us.