How do you measure before and after events?

We’ve covered the range of measures and inputs you can use to gain greater insight on your on-site events, now in this last installment we turn to the whole campaign, before and after, to get the bigger picture. Although the on-site event is the nucleus in which the campaign exists, before and after event tactics can greatly increase exposure and overall success of a campaign.

Generally, the two tactics that are most often used in campaigns that exist before and after event are social media tie-ins and promotions. As a refresher, here are the important metrics for both:

Social Media Overlay (Pre / During / Post)

Social Impressions Before and After Event
Number of Pictures
Percentage of Pictures Shared
Number of Total Reach

Promotional Tactic (Pre / During / Post)

Number of Promo Codes Tracked and Redeemed
Number of Contest Participants

Now, let’s dig in to see why these are important to know.

Social Impressions Before and After Event

By tallying the number of times the brand shows up in social channels (such as by counting a custom hashtag or keyword search results), you can get a glimpse of the campaign and brand exposure across each of the different platforms where it has presence. This is helpful in identifying the places where the brand’s customers are and how they choose to engage there.

Number of Pictures

Pictures used to be worth a thousand words, now they’re worth millions of likes. This content class has had a huge boom in popularity given that smart phones have dominated the landscape, enabling more and more simple digital photo taking. People tend to respond and engage with photos more than just text and those that choose to take photos of events will likely be users with stronger experiences. This means that not only do pictures of your event get amplified on social media, it also represents a richer level of engagement, making for the best future customer prospects.

Percentage of Pictures Shared

On the flipside, the percentage of pictures shared gives crucial insight into how attractive the event may be participants. This post event measurement is relevant especially if it is a photo activation where the photos are taken and given to consumers, instead of self taken. Having a photo app that stores photos and that is able to be tracked on social media will give you all you need to calculate this measure and really see if your event is worth sharing.

Total Reach

By calculating and combining the total photos and impressions shared, you can figure out the entire brand exposure, giving you an idea of how far reaching the campaign is. This will help validate strategies that are focused on brand awareness, giving you a simple number to point to after the event.

Number of Promo Codes Tracked and Redeemed

Promotions are a great way of getting many people into interacting with a brand. Ranging from simple cash back and referral rewards to more complex contest mechanics and loyalty programs, the idea of getting something for less than what you give is a powerful tactic to motivate people into engagement. One easy way to measure the effectiveness of this tactic is by distributing and then tracking promo codes, counting how many have been given out, and also the ones re-submitted. This way you’ll be able to, first, see the exposure of the campaign and, second, distinguish the level of engagement.

Number of Contest Participants

Similarly to promo codes, if you decide to do a sweepstakes or any other contest tactic, simply counting the number of participants against the number of total attendees will give valuable insight into how enticing the promotion is. Because this tactic is often at the beginning of the campaign cycle, this will help you determine strategies at the broader level, signaling if the incentive was too weak or cumbersome, and adjusting as you move closer to the event.

The whole picture: during, before, and after event

That wraps up our series on how to measure events! If you made it this far, buy yourself a cookie to congratulate yourself on learning this new set of tools to really make your events matter. Now given the full picture from on-site to before and after event, with these core numbers and metrics, you can begin not only begin to validate with proof the value and benefit of your campaigns, but it should also give you room and knowledge to experiment, finding the best creative ways to reach your experiential marketing goals.

We think we covered the most important ones for anyone with a passing interest in learning how to measure events. Of course, experiential marketing being such high touch and multi-faceted engagement in four dimensions, these metrics are just the tip of the iceberg. Sound off in the comments about the metrics you use and think are important and the ones you want to know more about!

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