To ensure the success of an association event, you need help to assess the event’s strengths and challenges in order to improve on future events. That’s where an event feedback survey comes in. Whether it is positive or negative feedback, it is incredibly important to collect for future events.

Creating an Effective Post-Event Survey

Post-event surveys often provide the most meaningful feedback. This gives attendees the opportunity to evaluate the effectiveness of various aspects of your events, such as individual speakers, session topics, break-out sessions, exhibitors, sponsors, and accommodations, as well as rate their overall experience with the event as a whole.

Below are some tips for creating an effective survey:

  • Be quick in sending your surveys out. I recommend sending it within 24 hours of the event’s end so the attendees don’t forget what their experience was like.
  • Avoid creating lengthy surveys. Sending an overly long survey is a surefire way to decrease the number of responses you get. Short and concise surveys are also easier to evaluate for actionable feedback.
  • Keep away from complicated questions. Questions need to be clear and to the point so that your audience doesn’t feel it is too much of a bother to answer all questions.

Survey Questions

There are a lot of questions you can and should include in this type of feedback survey. Many of the questions depend on what type of association event was held and what information you are hoping to gain from the survey.

Here are a few must-include questions for your attendee post-event survey:

  1. Please rate the following aspects of the event: (Interval scale question)
    • Date and time
    • Location
    • Speakers / Sessions
    • Food and beverages
    • Exhibitors
  1. Is this the first event of the association you’ve attended?
  2. Are you a member of the association?
  3. Did the speakers/sessions meet your expectations? Why/why not?
  4. How do you think this event could have been improved? (Open-ended question)
  5. Based on your experience at this event, how likely are you to attend future events? (Provide a scale like below)
    • Very likely
    • Somewhat likely
    • Not sure/Neutral
    • Probably not
    • Not Likely
  1. What topics would you like to see discussed at future events?
  2. Do you have any other suggestions or comments to help us improve future events?

Exhibitor and Sponsor Feedback

Having good exhibitors can make or break your future events. Treating the exhibitors well can make it easy to re-book and get new exhibitors for future events.

Below are a few examples of exhibitor and sponsor feedback questions:

  • Did the event schedule allow you ample time to interact with attendees?
  • What were your primary objectives for exhibiting at this event (brand awareness, lead generation, networking, etc.)?
  • Did the event meet your objectives?
  • Was the location of your booth suitable for generating traffic?
  • Did the event venue provide appropriate recognition for your sponsorship (Refreshment break sponsor, signage, on-stage recognition, etc.)?
  • Did you find value in the networking opportunities?

Listen to Your Attendees

If your attendees are taking time out to reply to your questions, then it is your responsibility to take it as constructive feedback and show them that you are listening to them. The more people feel they are heard, the more they will trust you, which will, in turn, help build a long-lasting relationship between you and your attendees.

If a post-event survey isn’t already a part of the association’s event strategy, then it’s time to add it. Not only will it streamline feedback collection for the association, but it will most definitely help you plan better association events in the future.