IPG Strategy Team Mar 9, 2021 3:45:25 PM 13 min read

How Event Strategists Are Utilizing Digital Data

While the transition to digital events brought with it a hurricane of difficulties for event strategists, the adjustment to those challenges has now presented new opportunities for success. Such is the case with digital data collection, something event strategists had limited access to before the shift to digital. 

Knowing how to interpret various types of data about your event is one of the most significant ways to determine what aspects of your event are the most interesting, useful, or otherwise engaging for various people within your audience. From there, event strategists can use the data to curate engagement opportunities that pertain to specific audiences and equip their sales teams with collateral that speaks to specific prospects.

At Impact Point Group, we know that analyzing the success of your digital event can be challenging, and we are here to help you use data-driven strategies to improve the overall success of your event.

The Digital Opportunity

Understanding who attends your event and why can help you adjust your content and delivery to best match your viewers' preferences, and digital events undoubtedly provide you with more detailed information than in-person events. 

Gather More Information

Many of your event attendees may be more willing to provide more data online than they would be in person. Although you should only require essential information instead of forcing your attendees to provide pieces of information they are not comfortable sharing, including more optional fields in online registration forms can help you gather more details about the demographics, interests, profession, years of experience, and other information about the people attending your event. 

Availability of Data

Simply put, digital data is more accessible and robust than paper data. Rather than forcing in-person participants to fill out surveys and questionnaires about their experience with an event, you can automatically learn about their engagement levels through digital data collection. This collection allows you to quickly and easily see categories of data to analyze attendance and ways to improve future events. 

Learn About Your Audience

Having access to more types of digital data points allows you to learn more about your audience. Understanding what groups of people make up the majority of your audience, how they tend to engage with your content, and how interesting the information included in your digital event is to them can help you adjust your future content, marketing, and goals to make them more relevant to your audience. 

What Metrics Are Relevant to Your Event? 

Before you can actually utilize your collected data, know what types of data are the most relevant to what you want your event to achieve. 

Focus on Metrics That Match Your Goals

Decide what types of data are the most relevant prior to your event to make sure you are gathering the most helpful types of information, as different types of events should focus on specific metrics that pertain to their goals (demand generation, revenue generation, etc.).

Although standard metrics, such as participants' age and gender, can provide helpful information for almost any event planner, more advanced metrics are needed to determine whether your event helped you meet your goals and help you adjust your strategy. 

Key Digital Metrics

Because digital events are still evolving and organizations have specific goals, key digital metrics are not always equal. What we do know, though, is that digital registration numbers are higher than in-person, opening up a wealth of data collection opportunity. Consider this quote from Impact Point Group President & Chief Strategist, Erica Spoor:

“Digital event registrations are currently coming in at 4-6x in-person equivalents based on the events we've audited. From what we have visibility into, attrition has been higher for net-new digital or digital native events, with proprietary brands seeing less attrition.”

To learn more about specific metrics, download our full Digital Event Forecast. There are some evergreen digital metrics that all event strategists can benefit from analyzing, including:

  • Total registration vs. attendance — digital registration and attendance should be much larger than in-person given the increased accessibility. 
  • Total sessions — of the X# of sessions available, how many did a specific attendee find useful enough to attend?
  • Time per session — after deciding to attend a session, how long did the participant spend participating in it? This provides useful insight into who they are and what piques their interest.
  • Conversion source — conversions are king, and mapping the sessions and/or activities that produced the most conversions allows you to prioritize equally as engaging opportunities moving forward.

Set Attainable Goals

Setting attainable goals is a crucial step in achieving them. If your company has never hosted a major event before, it is unrealistic to expect to meet extremely challenging goals. Instead, set yourself up for success by choosing bite-sized goals that are relative to the amount of event experience you have to make sure that the overall impact of the event on your company and your attendees is positive. 

How Should You Utilize This Data?

Your data does more than simply inform you. Instead, event professionals can use this information for two distinct purposes: curating customized journeys and equipping sales teams with useful information.

Curated Content Journeys

One way to stand out to your event attendees is by delivering content journeys that pertain to their exact interests. Not only will this make them feel valued, it also improves the chances of them interacting with your company post-event, translating to more leads. This is where customized content journeys come into play. 

Event strategists are getting savvier about triangulating data sources so they can see what a participant watched, compare it back with their interests and other demographics to identify patterns of engagement, and deliver hand-selected resources to them based on those patterns.

Many are also creating their own digital engagement indexes, ranking various digital behaviors with a point system before using predictive analytics to determine what to recommend for the next step in their journey, whether that’s follow up from a salesperson or offering a piece of downloadable content. 

See how different events designed curated content in our digital event forecast.


Digital Data and Sales Teams

Knowing what types of data are most important for your company and how to use them can help your sales teams adjust their strategies to best reach specific buyers. Equipping sales teams with prospect-specific data and engagement patterns has two main benefits:

  • Improve sales — First and foremost, studying and organizing data can help you understand who got the most out of your event. This information can help your sales team adjust your company's marketing strategy to build targeted interest in everything your brand has to offer and boost sales.  
  • Improves Representation of Prospects — By improving your representation of your company's prospects, gathering and analyzing data can help you customize your sales efforts to grab and keep the attention of your target audience and adjust your communication lines to focus on the types of communication your target audience tends to prefer.

Growing Importance of Data-Driven Sales Tactics

Brands are increasingly interested in what scientific data says about which characteristics make particular people part of a target audience, and taking the extra time to learn about the importance of data-driven sales can help you adjust your sales tactics to reach the groups of people who are most likely to be interested in your products and services.  

What’s Next?

At Impact Point Group, we are here to help you use digital data to improve the success of your event. Contact us today to learn more about our services or, download our free digital event forecast for a robust analysis of the digital event world.