Measuring the human nature of our events
By Sophie Holt, Managing Director, Explori
Many event planners I speak with often struggle to demonstrate the value of their event programs to internal stakeholders. A persistent challenge arises when assessing how to measure the success of an international program comprising in-person and virtual meetings and events for their business.
Quantifying value and success can be challenging because events and data are seldom viewed as synonymous. Different events have different objectives, and no two meetings are ever alike. However, in a time when budgets and environmental impact are under scrutiny, it is fast becoming essential to quantify the human experience and influence our event programs have on delivering business goals.
The answer lies in having a deep understanding of our attendees’ journeys, objectives and behaviors—and adopting a customer-centric approach across our event teams and building a robust data strategy that centers around attendees in the decision-making process.
Because we organize events for our audiences, we believe we know our audiences. We engage with our communities daily, leading us to think that data cannot reveal anything beyond our existing knowledge.
Yet, there is a danger of mistaking anecdotes for data—it is a common human trait to place greater emphasis on emotive human stories—such as the experience of the angry sponsor at the organizer’s office, or the effusive email of a delighted speaker.
Smart use of data can be a critical counterpoint to our lived experience, giving voice to the silent majority and surfacing previously hidden trends.
As people have become more discerning with their time and are looking for more curated experiences, the line between business and pleasure is much less defined. To deliver event experiences that resonate with attendees on multiple levels, we need a comprehensive 365-day data strategy that aligns with their ever-evolving preferences and expectations.
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