What gets measured…

If you’re anything like us (or we’re anything like you) then right now we’re all poring over a year’s worth of data– analyzing, forecasting, and budgeting for the next year (or five). One of our favorite resources, the Event Manager’s Blog, has written a concise and pithy article on what we know about our event budgets. The takeaway, which is less obvious than it seems: your budget is the driver of key ROIs, and potentially the success of your event.

To this list, we’d add another important consideration more closely tailored to events that repeat annually. In a 365-day event cycle it’s a challenge to accurately track new elements and elements that just need a tweak to better reap the rewards of inspired long-term planning. The solution: as you’re building the event’s budget, remember the old adage “what gets measured gets done [or improved, or even noticed]”. Use your budget process intentionally, targeting each new element and measuring each tweak to determine the actual ROI. This allows you to experiment using objectively measured variables, contextualize customer feedback, safely evaluate small changes in anticipation of larger, later changes, and confidently invest in the long term.

In the context of your event, it looks like this: Remember that one thing from that survey that you read and thought to yourself “gee, that’s a really great idea,” but you didn’t know how to activate it? Budget for it early, track its implementation, and then at the end of your budget cycle, you’ll know objectively what it was worth and whether to keep it or try out the newest wacky survey suggestion.