Gone are the days when events were done just as a mere PR exercise. The current business epoch looks at events not just as affairs to put your brand “out there”, but as comprehensive business investments that throw up returns– not just monetarily, but in terms of digital footprint, leads generated, product knowledge, website traffic and a host of other key performance indicators (KPIs).
Budgets for all kinds of events, whether corporate, social or academic, are reaching unprecedented numbers. The most successful business invest 1.7x their marketing budget in live events. It’s only right then, that event organisers and businesses work together to channelize valuable data before, during and after the event to draw strong inferences and directives.
☑ Measuring your Real Return on Investment
Financial performance of your event can certainly be measured by quantifying ROI, that is squaring up expenses against income and collection. However, in the modern-day business scenario, ROI is not just monetary but also KPI-driven. Aside from actual hard money, we need holistically measure ROI with metrics that quantify every domain’s performance and success in an event. Let’s understand how.
☑ How Do You Collect Data During Events?
Collecting data during an event is as important as collecting the same before the event. So the day you find yourself pumping your funds into an upcoming event, you must already be on top of the data collection game. Measuring key performance indicators (KPIs) before your event gives you critical baseline metrics to work with, that help you chart the movement of that data through your big event days. Even before you begin to play with your data, first clearly chalk out a well-defined strategy, i.e.,
- ☑ What are your goals from collecting and analysing this data?
- ☑ What inferences or insights would be useful to you?
- ☑ What action points can you derive from these insights?
Budget & Expenses
Further, factor in your budgeted and actual expenses to see how your profitability graph sketches out. This can be done for each and every metric. Here’s where a stellar event management tool comes handy for you. Dryfta’s budget and expenses management system helps you categorize, bundle, email and review various expenses with a comprehensive comparison of past figures, budget estimates against real figures for each and every expense and revenue head. This gives you an insight into what’s increased or decreased and why. Any comments or pending executable are also featured for easy management.
Unified Dashboard for KPIs
Lastly, after each team executes the above tabulation and analyses of budget, past and actions figures, use one single platform that integrates all this back-end data from different domains of your business to once centralised interface. For example, your digital marketing team should have their dedicated interface to collate data, while your reps at booths across your event should have their interface with their KPIs which may be registrations, enquiries, donations etc. This way, data collected real-time is collated in a central repository without relying on individual systems and spreadsheets that invite room for trouble.
☑ What Data Should Businesses Be Collecting During Events?
As one of the earliest exercises to event management, sit each of your teams down and understand critical KPIs they work with, that measure their performance and success. It is for these metrics that they will have to collect data before and during the event. These include both budget/past figures of monetary expenses, as well as other indicators of returns. Here are a few examples:
Budget & Returns Indicators:
- ☑ Budgeted and actual sales
- ☑ Budgeted and actual expenses
- ☑ New expenses categories
- ☑ Total actual profit and estimated profit
- ☑ Increase in business and brand awareness
- ☑ Growth in engaging social media followers
- ☑ Website traffic
- ☑ Lead generation percentage
- ☑ Number of social influencers on board
To measure these metrics, you will have to work with the following data points:
- ☑ Number of attendees
- ☑ Number of leads generated
- ☑ Net sales at the event
- ☑ Payment method used by attendees
- ☑ Overlap of attendees who are speakers/moderators/invited guests
- ☑ Number of social media mentions/followers increased/likes
- ☑ Amount collected in registrations
- ☑ Number of no-shows
- ☑ Amount collected towards
- ☑ Number of survey responses across all channels
- ☑ Number of enquiries received
Talk to all your teams and narrow down on the critical data points from each of their perspectives. Chalk out a plan on how each of these is to be measured by them and collated into their interfaces, as part of the central data repository created for your event.
☑ How Do You Analyse This Data?
Once all data has been collated by your team, the critical question arises of analysing the same. You need to build multiple reports that square up a set of metrics to the other, to observe how they impact one another. Also, pool in the historical data to observe how trends change if things are done differently. You can also stack up projected figures and actual figures to identify focus areas for the future.
Dryfta’s event analytics and reporting feature are perfect to facilitate this. it also gives you a ‘snapshot’ of how things are going at your event in real-time in order for you to make immediate changes or tweaks.
Rope in the best analytics minds in your corner to have this job done for you and draw intriguing, driving and powerful inferences to plan your events better and generate monetary and holistic ROI for your event. Lastly, don’t forget to join the dots back with your primary strategy in terms of the objectives of your data collection and analyses exercise.
With every event, make it a practice of roll out comprehensive data collection, measurement and analysis exercises. As Peter Drucker said, “If you can’t measure it, you can’t improve it.”