How to define event goals and objectives that make an impact

January 7, 2022 by No Comments

Before planning any event, it is important to define your event goals. Planners often do planning without taking this important step.

This is a mistake. Setting goals and objectives will make organizing your event easier.

For inspiration, we’ll begin with the steps for setting goals for the event. Next, we’ll show you some examples of great event goals.

This post:

  1. 5 Steps to Establish Event Objectives
  2. Four Event Objective Examples
  3. Event Objective Impact
  4. Here are five things to keep in mind when planning your event.

What are the Event Goals and Objectives

Often, the terms “goals”, and “objectives”, are interchangeable. They have their meanings.

  • Goals should be specific and easily measurable.
  • These are the steps and strategies you take to achieve your objectives.

These 5 Steps will help you set event goals that maximize the event’s impact.

Step 1: Identify your event goals

You are not defining the event’s goals but simply documenting its purpose. What is the purpose of the event?

These are key questions to ask when setting event goals and objectives.

  1. Why is this event important?
  2. Why invite attendees to your event?
  3. What are the most important things that attendees should take away from your event?
  4. What is the best way to measure your success?

Keep the big picture in your mind.

The brand’s overall marketing strategy and the company’s mission should be used to determine the event goals. Event planners will find it helpful to remember the bigger picture, as their minds are often occupied with a million small tasks and deadlines.

Define your key performance goals

Understanding the “why” is important, but it is equally important to quantify your goal.

Focus on the things you can control when working towards your performance goals. You can’t control whether your attendees decide to attend next year’s conference. However, you can evaluate the sales made during, after, and before the conference. How many qualified leads were you able to obtain. How many qualified leads were followed up by your team in the following months? This list could go on.

Although it may seem obvious, decision-makers may make suggestions that you cannot control when assessing the success of an event. When communicating expectations to higher-ups, it is important to state your goals clearly.

Step 2: Make your event goals “smart”

When setting goals, use SMART goals. These are:

  • Specific
  • Measurable
  • Attainable
  • Realistic
  • Time-based

It’s impossible to say that you want “to host the best marketing conference”, but it isn’t very specific. A goal to “plan a country music festival lasting one week by the end of the current month” is specific and time-based but unlikely to be achievable or realistic.

While it’s tempting to set your sights on the stars, try to be realistic about what you can achieve. Start by writing down a lot of ideas. Next, narrow down the list and combine all the ideas to create a solid goal.

If you are unsure what these “smart goals” should look like, please refer to the examples further down this post.

Step 3: Determine your event goals using 20 events KPIs

No matter your goal, any of these KPIs can be a great fit.

  1. Cost per customer acquisition
  2. Number of qualified leads at the event
  3. High satisfaction ratings from sponsors for the event
  4. Individual promo code tracking link performance
  5. Gross revenue
  6. Total number of registrations
  7. Use the designated hashtags on each platform to make social media mentions
  8. Most attendees are very satisfied with the event speakers
  9. Number of active community members following the event (compared to total before the event).
  10. Results from satisfaction surveys of attendees in numerical form
  11. As a percentage, the number of event check-ins relative to registrations
  12. The score of the Net Promoter
  13. Online engagement of event community as measured by social media interactions or specific activity on the event app
  14. Live event app polling
  15. Shares, likes and comments on social media related to the event
  16. Individual ticket sales and performance tickets
  17. Ratio cost to revenue
  18. Sponsor page engagement for the event website
  19. Recurring events: Number of attendees who are repeat participants
  20. Total acquisition of new customers

Event software can be used to measure these KPIs. Ensure you have a reliable platform with all the features required to capture your data.

Step 4: Create an event strategy

Next, you need to think about your event strategy. Now that you have a clear idea of your event goal and are passionate about them, it is time to determine how to achieve them.

Two perspectives are helpful when thinking about strategy:

  1. The planner is viewed from your perspective
  2. Your attendee’s perspective

What will the attendees and the planning team do to help achieve the goals? Ask yourself these questions:

  1. What education measures (e.g. What educational measures (i.e. speakers, panellists) do you need to achieve this goal?
  2. Are you going to need speakers?
  3. What is the social goal of your event? How will you encourage interaction?
  4. What entertainment will you need to achieve the social satisfaction you desire for this event?

Your strategy may include some mini-goals. You might need mini-goals or milestones to reach your ultimate goal. That is okay.

As you brainstorm, plan your event. The plan could be an outline, project plan, or another document. The plan should outline the goals you have set and the steps you will take to achieve them.

Step 5: Make sure your event goal is a way for people to make connections

Although no two events are the same, they all share the goal of creating connections. Perhaps attendees can connect with content or an idea.

It is important to consider how you can create these connections. If the event’s goal is to educate attendees, you should think about what they are learning, why, and how to help them.

These answers will allow you to build the necessary items such as speakers and content.

Make sure your goals are clear to your attendees to assist you in achieving your vision.

Five Things to Remember When Planning Your Event Planning Strategy

What is the Event Vision?

Your events should have a vision and a mission, just like a company or corporation. Your vision could be a mirror of your event goals. Why are you hosting an event? What are you hoping to achieve by hosting an event?

The event’s look and feel is another important aspect of the vision. Consider who your attendees will be to determine the appearance of the event. Are you hosting a business conference where your company launches a new product? Invite as many influential media people as possible to give the event a VIP atmosphere.

If it’s smaller and intimate, then finding the right venue for your event is a smart idea. You can start to envision your vision by going back to the event goal.

What is the Planning Timeline?

It is essential to have a timeline for event planning to keep things track. If you don’t have time to plan an event, a timeline can help you stay on track. A timeline will help you coordinate as far as possible days or weeks before your event if you have the time. Consider what you want to happen and when. Are you going to need to visit a site or create an event map? Or pay your vendors by a specific date? These are great additions to an event timeline.

It’s also a good idea to add timing for the day-of and day-before logistics. If your venue has strict load-in/load-out times for suppliers, you will want to mention that on your timeline. Post-event timing is critical for following up with attendees. You should schedule any event marketing emails (e.g. thank yous for attending) into your calendar.

What is the Budget?

Working with clients can help you determine the budget you have been allocated. Planning your event budget based on items you have hired, bought, or used for similar events is a good place to start. The basic budget should include expenses for the venue, staffing and service fees. If you plan to host a large event, you might want to spend some money on your event marketing efforts. Don’t forget about the guests!

You should always leave some wiggle room for unexpected expenses. The rule of thumb is to spend 15% more than the budget. This will offset any missed costs.

Are there VIPs?

Event VIPs can be celebrities, dignitaries or other event stakeholders. You can make sure VIPs are included early in your event planning strategy to ensure they have all the information they need to participate in your event. Speakers may need special equipment or microphones that were not budgeted. You can prepare for anything by anticipating what VIPs will need.

What is our Crisis Management Plan?

There is always the possibility of something going wrong when it comes to events. If you have a plan for dealing with crises, it’s not necessarily the end of the universe. A list of participants in the event with their contact information is a good way to direct any issues to the right person. In the same way, outdoor events should have a backup plan in case of inclement weather.

To help you manage the event, hiring an event security firm might be a good idea. If you are hosting a large event, security personnel can be present to check-in guests at the event’s entrance. To be ready for any eventuality, you can have security personnel roaming the venue.

You are now ready to create event goals and objectives that work!

Next, learn which floor layout apps are best for event success. Also, download a useful event planning checklist that you can personalize to suit your needs.

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