11 Questions You Need to Ask Attendees Before An Event
What’s the most effective way to anticipate the wants and needs of your audience? Ask them directly with pre-event survey questions — and then deliver. Pre-event evaluation questions can cover everything from logistics to topics to keynote speakers. This valuable feedback will help you plan around your crowd and show your attendees that you are organized and responsive. Plus, pre-event surveys are a great way to generate some additional buzz and excitement.
Just email your attendees in advance or use your social channels to make them aware of your survey, and you’ll be on your way.
Here are 11 questions to get your pre-event survey started.
How did you hear about the event?
As you promote your event, this question helps you gauge how and where people are learning about it, helping you target your marketing efforts and reach more like-minded people. On the flip side, it can help determine if one of your marketing channels is underperforming.
When are you arriving?
Depending on the response here, you may want to consider a shuttle to/from the hotel or airport to make sure transport and welcome registration runs smoothly. You can also ask where attendees are staying and use the answers to help provide more detailed travel info.
Which social platform do you prefer?
Depending on your audience, a Twitter hashtag might not be as popular as an Instagram photo contest or a Snapchat story. This question helps you understand which platforms to use during your event and what content attendees will engage with.
How do you feel about the location of the event?
The more attendees are excited about the location, the more they’ll be more excited about the event. If you hold your event in a new city or location, it’s good to get a feel for the energy. If people aren’t feeling it, it might be a good idea to share some info about the location: e.g. things to do, places to stay, or restaurants to check out.
What are you hoping to get out of the event?
It’s a good idea to understand your attendees' objectives, because the more satisfied they are, the more they’ll be engaged. Keep this question open-ended and let attendees tell you what they want. Depending on how they answer — if their goal is information, networking, team building — you can adjust accordingly.
Have you attended this event before?
Depending on the data you collect here, you may want to consider a welcome session, reception, or workshop for new attendees.
What speakers are you looking forward to most?
As we’ve mentioned before, speakers are one of the essential elements of a successful event, and a major point of interest for your attendees. Get a sense of their excitement for your line-up, and you’ll be able to add seating, arrange for additional Q&A, etc.
Is there any event information that you couldn't find or access easily?
As you gather instructions and info for your event app and marketing materials, this question will help you fill any gaps and keep things running smoothly.
Do you have any special needs or disabilities that we can help accommodate?
You want all guests to feel welcome and comfortable. Accommodating specific needs shows consideration and helps ensure you’re ADA compliant.
Do you have any food allergies or specific dietary needs?
Food is crucial, no matter the audience. Ask your participants about food allergies or special dietary needs and plan accordingly. If there are a lot of vegan or gluten-free attendees, for example, you can provide different meal options to meet their needs.
What's your favorite Michael Jackson song?
This question doesn’t have to be about Michael Jackson (although who doesn’t like Michael Jackson?). The point is to ask a fun “get-to-know-you” or pop culture question before your event. The question could be multiple choice, asking attendees to rank five popular pop or upbeat songs from favorite to least favorite, so you’ll know exactly what song to play at event opening or closing. You might also share the most popular result with the audience as an icebreaker.
Before creating your pre-conference survey questions, decide the method of delivery and the question type. Do you prefer to use a ranking, multiple choice or free-form system? Perhaps a combination is best. Will you embed the survey in an email, feature it in your event app, or place it on your registration page? You can also continue the communication with your audience by using a redirect page after the survey. Above all else, encourage participation by keeping it short!
Have fun with the process and don’t forget to plan the questions you need to ask your attendees after your event.
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