As more companies use virtual events as part of their growth and engagement mix, it is increasingly important to be able to evaluate the effectiveness of the event. I have used virtual events multiple times and it is an element of our growth mix.
Simply having the event is not a success; you need to measure and evaluate it. Has the event been worth the time and resources devoted to it and should you replicate the event? How can you optimize future events so they have a bigger impact on your business? I read a recent article on MarketingProfs that offers some great advice on what you should track on your next virtual event.
Unlike physical events, with virtual events you can measure much of the attendees’ behavior. You can see which content they interact with and how they engage with other attendees and speakers.
By tracking attendee engagement, you see what worked and what did not, as well as seeing which potential customers you are most likely to convert. In a physical event, you assume the people playing on their phones are the least engaged. In a virtual event, you can see if they are progressing their slides with the presentation, asking questions, whether they clicked on links you provided etc.
The first two categories, behavior and engagement, provide good information while the user is participating in the event, while it is also important to consider what attendees thought of their overall event experience once it is completed. Surveys are a powerful tool to get this information. You can conduct the survey by email or you may also want to follow up on the event with a telephone call.
Finally, you can make the material from your event available afterward for people who did not attend. By measuring how many take advantage of this material and which material is accessed the most, you can determine the usefulness of the different elements.
Measure, analyze, optimize
The key is not the details of how you are measuring the impact and effectiveness of your online event, but that you are capturing data, analyzing it and then optimizing future events.
- Just like other elements of your growth and promotion strategy, you should capture data in your virtual events to understand their effectiveness.
- It is easier to capture data from virtual events than live events and you should capitalize on this opportunity.
- The key to a successful virtual event program is to capture data, analyze it and use the analysis to optimize future events.