Management Guru Peter Drucker once said: "If you can't measure it, you can't manage it." Truer words were never spoken - especially as it pertains to the event industry where marketers are consistently looking to make the most of every dollar spent. By using all the information they have available from an event, today's marketers can identify the strengths and weaknesses of their program in order to justify their event budget and improve ROO and ROI.
Recently, our Webinar entitled: "Measuring the Event," highlighted the development of a measurement plan, its effectiveness and its integration with corporate objectives.
Here are some of the key elements we discussed:
- In today's economic climate - Metrics are King- Don't leave home without a plan to measure your event. It's critical that you plan your measurement objectives well in advance of the event. Being able to accurately answer these types of questions will help you develop more efficient processes so you can further refine objectives.
- Ask yourself how your event will contribute to your overall corporate initiatives.
- Evaluate key objectives - event design, the time a visitor spends at your event and even your staff.
- Consider adding behavioral metrics as one of your objectives.
- Centralize your data - Know as much as you can about your attendees. By creating a centralized repository for lead, survey and RFID data, you are able to easily correlate purchase intent with each attendee visit. The more you understand the customer and his or her needs, the more likely you are to fine tune your message for further targeting at your next event.
- Data Integration - Use a variety of methods to understand your customer. Lead retrieval, surveys and behavioral data help you measure ROO/ROI in order to determine purchase intent, sales pipeline and key message reaction. By capturing data from these three sources and then aggregating it, you are able to assess your staff, any demos you are featuring and provide that much needed decision support information (planning, design of exhibit, level of investment justified, identify cost containment opportunities) as you plan and design future events.
- Actionable Reporting - Ask yourself: Does the data tie back to the objectives you've set? How do you want to use the data you have collected to modify future events? Reporting the data is a critical component of your plan and as you begin to manage the data you're measuring, you should ensure delivery of results are actionable and communicated accurately to the varying levels of internal stakeholders. For example, dashboards are great for event managers who want specific, tactical data. Scorecards and executive summaries are also an ideal way to support your objectives with senior management and other executives.
Once you collect event data, it can quickly and accurately be measured against your objectives and viewable in the format that's most appropriate to your audience. In keeping with what Peter Drucker said, measurement enables sound management and will ultimately lead you to continually improve your events, meet corporate objectives and develop strong relationships with customers by always meeting their needs. It's a win, win for everyone involved.