Event organisers have got to start understanding what parameters you actually measure to determine whether or not the event was a success. With budgets under pressure, the need to demonstrate a real return on an event is a constant factor for event organisers these days. I have seen far too many organisations deciding an event was a total failure because they didn’t instantly increase sales by X per cent and this over simplification of the process has got to stop.
For some events, real return on investment happens much later than the event itself so how do you truly track this and paint an accurate picture of what your event delivered to the business? Of course there is no silver bullet answer; this will vary hugely according to the type of event and those all-important objectives, but one common denominator is the need for quality data and effective analytics over time.
It is only by building up an accurate picture of registrant and attendee behaviour over time and integrating that information with other systems, such as CRM tools and customer data, that you can start to put a number on what business your event might have generated. For many, the amount of data and long-term tracking could be overwhelming and I think it’s fair to say that a spreadsheet simply won’t cut it. Event organisers must get data savvy if they want to be able to justify event ROI in the board room, looking at integrating with other marketing and sales tools in addition to event management if they are to truly measure the value of events to the business over time.