By Judith Sloane, deputy manager, Meet Cambridge
Events deliver on so many levels, people enjoy meeting face-to-face, they like and want experiences but, as an organiser, how can you ensure that your event is going to deliver for everyone involved?
It might be tempting to pack your bags and head off to the nearest beach for some R&R (you can do that later!) but setting time aside to do an in-depth assessment of your event right afterwards will reap rewards that could save you time and resource for the future.
Here are 10 considerations to get you started:
1. Revisit the objectives and goals that you set in the planning stage – how did the event measure up?
2. Request feedback from attendees, speakers, sponsors and exhibitors to gather all points of view and request permission to share feedback too – great testimonials will help with marketing future events.
3. What was the makeup of your audience? Did the event attract new delegates from countries or locations that weren’t represented at earlier events? Evidence of this could help you quantify how far and wide the knowledge shared at your event is being disseminated.
4. Have a ‘wash-up’ meeting with the venue to discuss what worked well and what, if anything, could have gone better.
5. If you took steps to ensure the event was environmentally friendly, record the outcomes to help you demonstrate how sustainable your event was and set goals for future events.
6. Take stock of all conversations, content shared, coverage and reach on all social network channels. There is plenty of free software available to help you track hashtags etc.
7. Evaluate the legacy of your event, the impact may not be fully realised for years but have a plan to encourage your attendees, speakers, sponsors and exhibitors to share milestones with you – new funding streams, societal changes and new discoveries could all be possible – record the power of your event!
8. Create a series of post-event reports rather than one extensive one so interested stakeholders can get to the relevant highlights quickly and easily.
9. Update the event website and any social networks with outcomes, an image gallery and impact/legacy information to make sure everyone knows about the success.
10. There’s no time like the present, so while you’re sharing your success, ride the wave and make sure you give your contacts an easy way to sign up for your next event!