By creating feedback loops for your events, you let attendees, staff, and vendors know that their opinion is important to you and you take their feedback into consideration when planning future events.
As a result, everyone involved with your event will understand that your goal is to help them meet their objectives and will be more inclined to provide feedback that helps you deliver better experiences.
With this in mind, in this article, we’ll take a look at how successful event organizers use feedback loops to enhance event experience for attendees, staff, and vendors. We’ll also discuss some of the ways you can create feedback loops for your events.
Let’s get started.
Why Gathering Event Feedback Is Important
Savvy event organizers use various tools and methods to collect as much information as they can from their attendees, staff, and vendors – both before and after the event. This way, they’re able to gather feedback that helps them plan better events in the future.
Feedback From Attendees
You can send everyone on your mailing list a pre-event survey to get an idea of attendee demographics before the event. You can then use this information to target your event’s message to prospective attendees.
Gathering post-event feedback from attendees helps you determine whether or not your event planning efforts succeeded in meeting their expectations. For example, asking attendees open-ended questions like “What can we do to improve this event in the future” gives them a platform to let you know their thoughts and opinions.
Feedback collected from attendees – before and after the event – gives you a wealth of information about how you can plan better events in the future. You might learn that your attendees would appreciate longer breaks to re-energize during the event.
Feedback From Event Staff and Vendors
As an event organizer, it’s nearly impossible to keep up with everything that happens on the day of the event. Your event staff can provide you with information on incidents that you might have missed and what you can do to improve your event in the future.
For example, you could ask staff members in charge of checking in attendees about their experience. They would be able to explain if your check-in process was smooth for attendees. If not, they might have ideas on what you can do to make it better.
In addition to this, the vendors you enlist for your event can help you get valuable insight into event logistics and your venue. You might consider asking vendors if the information given to them before the event was clear and if the event venue was suitable for their services.
Let’s take a look at how Burning Man and Midwest Amp Fest gather feedback from their event participants.
Burning Man has an event feedback loop page on their event website which asks participants for their post-event thoughts, concerns, and reflections. The feedback form asks event participants for their name, email address, type of feedback, and comments.
The Midwest Amp Fest event’s website has a button in the header labeled Feedback that takes visitors straight to their feedback page. Event participants can then enter their name, email address, and feedback using the feedback form.
Now that we have a better idea about why it’s important to gather feedback from attendees, staff, and vendors and how popular events gather feedback, let’s step through some of the different ways you can create event feedback loops.
5 Ways to Create Event Feedback Loops
By creating an event feedback loop, you’ll be able to gather useful information directly from your event’s participants. You can use this information to plan better events and deliver better event experiences.
Here, we’ll look at some of the ways you can create event feedback loops:
One of the easiest ways to set up an event feedback loop is by offering different ticket options to your event attendees. Think of each ticket type as a different experience.
For example, some attendees might be interested in simple, general admission tickets which offer basic event experiences. Others, however, might be interested in a ticket option that includes a meal.
If you have the capability – and it’s profitable – you might consider offering multiple ticket options to get a better understanding of the types of event experiences your attendees are most interested in.
With Event Espresso, you can create as many different ticket options as you’d like. After registrations close, you can export all of the data to Excel or CSV format to get insight into which ticket types were the most popular.
Chat rooms can help you generate attendee engagement before, during, and after your event takes place.
Creating an online forum or community in a chat room (like Slack or Discord) is a great way to collect feedback from participants. Although this method is incredibly easy to implement, you will need a full-time moderator to monitor the chat room. The moderator will be responsible for starting new conversations, moderating conversations, and responding to comments and feedback.
Another benefit of setting up a chat room is that you can assign different channels for different topics. For example, you could have a channel for gathering post-event feedback and another channel for collecting new ideas for your events.
As an event organizer, you probably already know how important surveys are for planning successful events. Surveys help you collect information directly from your event participants and measure the success of your events.
For example, you might want to keep things simple before the event and include only multiple choice questions. And, after the event, you might ask participants open-ended questions like “What are some features you suggest we add to next year’s event”.
You can send out surveys before, during, and after your event. Be sure to check out this article on How to Use Surveys to Plan Better Events to learn how you can send surveys to attendees using Event Espresso.
Interactive polling is a very popular method of collecting feedback from event participants.
You can embed interactive polls and questionnaires into event apps to collect feedback from participants in real-time. Alternatively, you can place interactive screens throughout your event venue that allow users to provide feedback.
If you’re considering asking participants for feedback during your event, make sure you’re asking a few, close-ended questions. You can remind attendees, staff members, and vendors to provide feedback during lunch breaks or have a dedicated feedback session as part of your event agenda.
You can also set up a simple Twitter poll for your event. This is an incredibly easy way to encourage attendees to leave feedback. It’s a good idea to use your event hashtag in your Twitter poll to make it easy for attendees to find it.
Pro tip: Pin your event’s Twitter poll to your profile during and after the event to increase its visibility.
Feedback Boxes and Feedback Walls
Having feedback boxes or a feedback wall at your event venue is a great way to encourage participants to give feedback.
The great thing about this method is that it’s incredibly visual. When event participants see other attendees leaving feedback, they’re more likely to join in on the activity. As a result, you’ll be able to gather thoughtful, constructive feedback about your events.
Setting everything up is incredibly easy. All you need to do is lay out some post-it notes and markers. You’ll also need to decide what to ask participants. For example, you might ask open-ended questions like “Did the event meet your objectives” or “List three things we could do differently next time around”.
Dedicated Feedback Forms
Dedicated feedback forms can help you keep track the feedback your participants provide. You can classify the feedback you receive into different categories. For example, you might collect feedback about your venue, keynote speakers, event agenda, breaks, communication, and check-in experience.
You can create a page on your event website and add your feedback form to it. Gravity Forms makes it easy to create forms in WordPress. This makes it easy for attendees to share their thoughts, concerns, opinions, and ideas with you. You might also consider creating a feedback form (using SurveyMonkey or Google Forms) and sending it to your mailing list after the event.
Creating feedback loops can help you learn more about your event participants and use that information to grow your events. Having multiple feedback loops will give participants more options to provide feedback and enable you to ask different types of questions at different stages of the event.
Which tools do you use to collect feedback from event participants? Let us know in the comments section below.