After spending months upon months planning an event and pouring all your blood, sweat and tears into it (to the point where you’re fairly certain you’re suffering from both dehydration and anemia), what do you do after it’s all over?
And if you think the answer’s somewhere around: “Phew! Let out a deep breath, switch off any and every device, and jump right into bed!”, then think again. Hold up, hold up. We know it’s unfair. I mean, we haven’t spent decades working in this field to not know that the words “post-event” bring just as much blood pressure as “pre-event”.
But to be fair event management can kinda be a toughie. While some of us are aware that an event is not truly complete until one has analyzed its success and extended its life cycle, most of us happen to either skip it or totally ignore it.
You have to understand that the post-event is just as important as the pre-event. Failure to acknowledge this fact is why most event organizers fall just short of complete success. Post-event work is a biggie when it comes to the creation of your event’s brand. Forgetting to create digital communities, repurpose content, or survey event attendees are some serious mistakes made by event organizers every year.
5 things you need to do after wrapping up your event
1. Manners maketh that money
We’re all taught to mind our manners, and say our “Thank Yous” and “Pleases”. And the same goes for event managers. Thanking is pretty much an effortless job. All you gotta do is say two words and you’re done! But as easy as it is, it holds an impressive amount of power. For a simple thank you has the ability to transform any interaction into a positive one. A warm demonstration of your gratitude to all your attendees, sponsors, speakers, and partners will work wonders! And a gesture of appreciation for their cooperation and support with a thank you message, email or card will only cement the deal. Such gestures only solidify any chances of future collaboration and guarantee attendee reappearance.
To the person reading this, please don’t worry. We are in no way in the business of adding to your woes. In fact, the opposite holds true! Because in this article, we’re going to provide you with a checklist of 5 must-do post-event activities that prevent you from committing any more mistakes.
- Keep it short and sweet.
- Don’t forget to make your attendees feel special by customizing each message according to its recipient.
2. Show, don’t tell
Who wouldn’t wanna boast of a job well done? Especially something as backbreaking as organizing an event. But simply babbling about how great your event was won’t hack it. To let everyone know exactly how great it was, you gotta show them! You can collect and sort all the visuals from the event and create a post-event press release, or have it published across your social media accounts as well as your personal website. This way, you maximize both your event reach and coverage. Even better, kick it up a notch by sending out gated videos and event pictures of all the sessions from the event to your attendees. And if they manage to spot themselves within the footage, then they’ll be even more pleased!
Some other ways to get that content out:
- Answer attendees’ questions, or get them to send in their impressions and images via guest posts on your blog or other websites like Medium.
- Team up with live-event bloggers and turn each experience into an in-depth post ready to be published across the blogosphere.
- Repurpose all the speaker presentations at your event by turning slides into Slideshares.
3. Get ready to perform an event autopsy
As grisly as that sounds, it’s an appropriate analogy. Post-event is when it’s time to get right down to business. This is the part where organizers sit down with their teams to gauge and review the entire event from the planning to its execution. And because Timon and Pumba got it wrong with their “problem-free philosophy” (Nothing’s problem free, period), your event is likely to have suffered a few drawbacks of its own. Which you’ll address during the post-event evaluation. List out all the problems you ran into during the event (as well as possible solutions) and talk over all that worked out as well as what could have been done better. The latter helps you prep better for your next event. And finally, the most important thing to evaluate is whether all your objectives have been accomplished.
4. Feedback is your new BFF
Did you just LOL real hard at that? It’s an open secret that getting feedback is excruciatingly painful because:
- People avoid feedback forms like the plague.
- And the ones that do extend the courtesy of providing feedback, do so with a relish to narrate in graphic detail how much they were disappointed and distressed.
But then again, no excuses! Someone has to go through the process of finding out how much your event was appreciated (or not) It goes without saying that most people shrug off feedback duty, but it’s important to send out an immediate post-event survey while it’s still fresh in everyone’s minds. You could do this via a simple Google forms feedback page, or a website link with questions that could be multiple-choice, matrix, essay, slider, date and open-text formats. Trust us when we say this but it actually helps you out in the long run. Gather info and insights on all the event experiences. This helps give a facelift to areas that were previously lacking and readies you for future events. Plus, by taking the time to ask attendees if the event lived up to their expectations, you help make them feel valued and listened to,
5. Rack up those testimonials
Feedback is all well and good, but testimonials are where it’s at! While feedback may either be positive or negative, testimonials are live evidence of something that turned out to be pretty great. Every event swears by the good that comes from some good ol’ word-of-mouth publicity. But having a written or a recorded testimonial is a whole different thing. Testimonials help you:
- Gain trust
- Build a reliable image
- Achieve a solid reputation
Post your event, reach out to all your clients via phone calls, emails, video chats, or meetings to get them to share their stories and experience. And there’s no rule that says you gotta be formal. Just ask your client to give an honest feedback on the services you provided them.
Key tip: Testimonials are wholly positive, so only contact clients that seem really pleased with both the event and your services!
Post-event strategy is extremely essential yet most often overlooked during planning. We’re so busy running around worrying about the event both before and when it actually happens, we don’t really focus on the after. Remember, a good planner works hard, but a great planner continually works hard!.An event planner’s job is not done even after the last guest walks out. There’s still a bucket load of things waiting to be completed. Post-event marketing is a great way to extend an event’s lifecycle, and generate buzz about other upcoming events. Whether it’s building an online community through forums, or unleashing the power of video, repurposing content or surveying attendees, organizers need to step it up right till the very end. It’s not over till it’s over!