Without a doubt, the most stressful part about organising events is meeting the never-ending list of demands of your bosses or clients. And more often than not, you have no option but to comply, regardless of how unreasonable their demands might be. They expect you to have everything at your fingertips whenever they need any information about their event. This especially applies to event feedback. After all, both you and your client/boss work towards the same goal – to provide a great experience to attendees. It's natural to want to know how attendees responded to the event.
Whether you use event feedback to assess content, logistics, venue, or location, it's critical to understand if a particular event met - and, ideally, exceeded - your attendees expectations and helped your organisation meet its goals. And when that feedback is leveraged as part of a more robust, programmatic loop that generates strategic insights before, during, and after events, that direct intelligence becomes even more powerful.
TYPICALLY COLLECTED AND USED FEEDBACK
Collecting event feedback isn't a revolutionary concept. In fact, when most businesses host events, summits, tradeshows, or other live meetings, they generally attempt to collect some sort of feedback. The problem? More often than not, those organisations only collect feedback after the event - sometimes through postcard mailings or other non-digital means. While the information collected from those sources can provide some insights, that singular approach severely limits the scope of intelligence you can generate from an event.
Here are two reasons why:
NON-DIGITAL FEEDBACK ISN'T IMMEDIATE.
If you're trying to collect feedback by mail or through paper surveys, you're missing out on a huge opportunity to make immediate improvements. The longer you wait to gather feedback, the less you're able to tap into each person's excitement and the more likely it is that specific details will have faded from their memory.
POST-EVENT FEEDBACK DOESN'T TELL THE WHOLE STORY.
In fact, it's very often generic and watered down, largely because you're asking someone to recap or reflect on their entire event experience, rather than individual, in-the-moment experiences.
So, what's the better approach?
Thanks to technology, event organisers are now able to capture much richer feedback from a much more diverse array of intelligence, all while attendees are at peak engagement with the event.
There are several benefits to going the digital route for collecting feedback:
Surveys can be delivered and accessed through embedded email links and QR codes, or built directly into mobile event apps. This allows feedback to be collected immediately after breakout sessions or keynote speeches.
Social media chatter can be monitored in real-time. This helps marketers and event organisers capture sentiment and identify opportunities for involvement in real-time.
Mobile feedback surveys are a great medium for giving respondents a way to provide feedback from anywhere and at any time.
Pre- and post-event emails give attendees the chance to provide detailed suggestions. This touchpoint ensures people's voices are heard before and after events, and it also covers attendees who might not have answered questions on-site.
Savvy event organisers and marketers today are relying on real-time response technology to take the pulse of their events. With the right tools and strategy, you will be able to save the hundreds of painful manhours spent doing something that event tech can do in minutes and seconds.