Nov 24, 2022

Measuring the ROI of events

Understanding the value of in person and virtual events is important, learn how to quantify ROI here.

Follow us or ask us a question:

Measuring the ROI of events

ROI or Return on Investment is a metric which is used to evaluate how an investment has performed. And investing in sending teams to conferences or sponsoring events can be expensive and make up a large amount of any marketing budget. Calculating the event ROI helps you to make informed decisions for the subsequent events you plan, so you can prioritize which events to attend and which events to host to attract high value users.

Why should you plan events?

According to the Content Marketing Institute, “events are your most important marketing tool ranked even higher than email marketing and digital advertising”.

Key benefits of events marketing include:

  • It enables consumers to cut through the clutter and the noise in the marketplace and identify the specific products and services they are looking for
  • It makes brands more accessible to their customers and increase the brand recognition for your product
  • It makes it easier to get instantaneous feedback from customers, and address potential issues in a more humane way

Measuring key event metrics

To understand whether events are working, you can track the following:

  • Invite Responses: This can be measured by the number of people who responded to the invite.
  • Attendance: This can be measured by the number of people who attended the event.
  • Net promoter score: This is measured by the % promoters - % detractors. To count the number of promoters and detractors, you can add a question such as: On a scale of 1-10, how likely is it that you would recommend this event? If the responder scores 9 or 10, then they are counted as a promoter and if the responder scores between 0-6, then they are counted as a detractor.
  • Leads generated: This can be measured by the number of potential new customers that indicated interest after attending the event
  • Paying customers gained from the event: This is measured by the number of net new customers that first interacted with you at the event

How to measure ROI?

Once you have measured your event's key metrics, it's important to tie them to the product or company's goals. It's important to note that attribution is tricky since some of the impact from the event will be realized much later. Here are some tips to make this easier:

  • Start with the key company or product metrics such as revenue or active users
  • Compute the cost of the event. This should include location costs, vendor costs and human costs.
  • Use QR codes at events, which have a unique trackable UTM link attached. For every lead that comes from the event, you should see that attached to their user information.
  • Three months after the event, measure the eventual impact on key company metrics like revenue or active users who came through the QR code link. E.g. if 100 people signed up from the QR code and 10 of them go on to become clients paying $10,000 per year. Then you have $100,000 of revenue attributable to the event. If it cost $50,000 to host the event your ROI would be (100k - 50k) / (50k) = 1 or 100%.
  • ROI in percent can be calculated by the formula: 100 * [(Total revenue attributable to the event - Total costs of organizing the event)/(Total costs of organizing the event) ]

Since Covid-19, both digital event as well as IRL events have become popular. The major advantage of digital events in terms of measuring success is that all of the above metrics are provided by the platform (Zoom webinar, Twitter spaces etc.) on which the event is hosted. Compared to this, in-person events will need the event organizer to dedicate resources to compute these metrics.

Why is measuring event ROI important

Tracking event metrics gives you insight into the success of the event while ROI measures whether the event is profitable. This can help you decide whether events are an effective channel and what percentage of your marketing budget should be assigned to events.

At Blaze, we help you evaluate the effectiveness of your virtual events such as Twitter spaces and Discord AMAs. Please reach out to us if you need help with this.