Thinking Outside The Box When Asking For Feedback On Your Event
12 Jul 2017
Gathering feedback is often seen as a task to be completed after an event or conference to determine the strengths and weaknesses of specific aspects, but in actuality shouldn't it also take place at the event? So that you are able to react to problems in the moment - thus not leaving the required changes to "next time". To learn how to get real-time feedback from your attendees, check out these four examples.
Feedback stations are already used at major public transport terminals, such as international airports. On the screen the visitor sees a number of facial expressions and can assess their satisfaction according to their mood. A similar method that may be used at a small business event, presentation or meeting could involve passing a tablet around the room to measure the overall impression, particularly when the thoughts/opinions are still fresh in the minds of your participants.
Thinking outside the box - Tip 1: You can also place specific questions on the device; for example: "How did you like the previous day's discussion on digitisation in the event industry?" To measure the success of digital content you could also ask participants to use Emojis instead of stars or rating systems.
The polling process is becoming an increasingly popular tool; whereby the interaction with participants is completed by live surveys or voting during events. These surveys and polls can take place directly at a lecture or workshop; providing real-time feedback from participants which may be used to shape the progress of the activities. For example, the vote could determine whether certain topics require more detailed explanation or discussion from the panel members. Think of this as a collective Q&A method, allowing the most popular questions to be answered.
Thinking outside the box - Tip 2: Do not ask too many questions at surveys, but focus on two to three that will gather a wide-ranging amount of information. If there are too many questions, the participants are quickly diverted from the actual event. Short surveys, on the other hand, can also be filled in during breaks.
Sticker walls function in a similar manner to the electronic feedback stations, but are more cost-effective for those without the tech know how or equipment. These can be arranged for individual presentations and workshops or placed at the exit to measure the overall impression of the event. You can either distribute stickers at the entrance with different emotional expressions or let the visitors select the appropriate stickers at the respective walls. To make it as easy as possible, you can also provide "points" stickers and list all previous day's lectures side by side.
Another creative and cost-effective way to get feedback in real time is to include questions or rating systems on the event brochure/map. This can include open question at the end of the day's timetable - "What three things did you learn today?" or "Which workshop was the most helpful for you?". Distribute the information cards at the start of the event day and make a mail box at the exit, so that your visitors can insert these cards at the close of proceedings.
In conclusion, participants are more willing to give constructive feedback when their impressions are still fresh and they are at the scene of the activities; instead of filling out online questionnaires days after in hindsight. Therefore, it is important to consider creative means to gather qualitative or quantitative responses - and if possible build the method into the event itself so that participants see the impact of their views or constructive feedback in real-time.