The New Attendee Journey

In this era of rapidly advancing technology, event managers, corporate planners, and trade show organizers, have many more attendee touch points to consider than before. A holistic approach to understanding attendee behaviors and preferences involves capturing data throughout your event starting with registration.  Registration is the foundation for collecting attendee information that can provide you with valuable demographics such as titles, region location, and other information.  Below are some touch points for segmenting your attendees in order to create the attendee journey.

Attendance Tracking: the fact that attendees often add a particular session and don’t attend, or attend another session instead, makes tracking their actual interests important.  Attendance tracking allows an event manager to see which sessions an attendee actually attended.  This data provides an overall look into the attendee journey, where attendees were throughout the event, and speaks volumes about their actual preferences.

Surveys: session evaluations and post-event surveys are critical to understanding attendee sentiments, a metric that is entirely different from behavior. Capturing opinions and comments from attendees about speakers and sessions helps to create a more complete picture of an individual or a group.

Lead retrieval: the data collected during a lead qualification survey at exhibit booths allows the event manager to see what products attendees were interested in and which leads to follow up with.  This data also allows the event manager to see what type of attendees visited what type of booth.

Show floor Entrance Tracking: when RFID is provided in order to track attendance and duration on the show floor, captured data can provide the event manager with insight into which exhibitor booths were most popular and most frequented.  This data not only provides what products attendees are most interested in but also detects buyer intent on the show floor.

Booth/Product Visits: by setting up RFID readers at product stations and exhibit booths on the show floor, the event manager gains insight into what products attracted what type of attendee. This data is gathered by measuring the duration and number of attendee visits at each booth. Demographic information retrieved during registration will help the event manager to understand the interests and preferences of specific groups of attendees.  Furthermore, you can use this information to generate net new opportunities for your organization.

Social media: comments that attendees make on social media channels provide organizers with another way to gauge the attendee interests and understand the attendee better.

Visualizing data collection as “touch points” along an attendee journey—one that begins well before the live event—helps event managers understand the many opportunities available to capture information. When the data is centralized and analyzed (cross-referenced, benchmarked, reviewed from a historical perspective), it becomes a critical tool to help them create more effective events and make more precise ROI calculations.