Conference Evaluation

We’re finalising the event evaluation feedback forms - I’m a little bored with the usual questions. Has anyone tried something different or used a stand out a question which guarantees a response?


Good question @APC - do you have any questions around how your delegates felt before, during and after the conference and what their biggest take out was?

When I complete feedback surveys, I don’t like answering loads of questions and rating every element of the event. I just want the freedom to make comments on anything that’s stood out to me - good or bad. Therefore, think asking just two questions, and letting people give feedback in their own words, is the most user-friendly:

What were your favourite things about the event?
What would you improve or change about the event?


We have used three questions (which are more like prompts) in the past “I like” “I wish” “What if”, which has worked quite well in terms of response rates. It requires a more creative answer so can be more time consuming to analyse, but it worked well for getting people to really think about their response.


That’s nice. What process did you use to analyse the responses? Did you make any changes as a result?

To turn the answers from those questions into something useful, I went through all responses individually, categorising the main points (we run a festival, so categories were things like infrastructure, performance content, vendors, campsite facilities etc.). Then group the answers into common themes to see where we could make changes which would have the biggest impact. All of that was done in spreadsheets. Kind of messy, but really useful for qualitative, practical criticism. The “I like” question also generated lots of quotes which we were able to use for marketing.

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I agree that you get much more “meat” with qualitative. Sounds like it was worth the additional work and great you could quote them. Quantitive is good for getting overall sentiment, quickly. I guess a combo of both is probably the ideal.

The feedback form is one of the hardest things to get right IMHO. We’ve tended to use paper feedback forms as despite very few people take the time to fill in online surveys after the event.

We recently tried a mixture of quantitative and qualitative questions for a series we ran this year. The idea being that we’d give attendees ample opportunity to say what they felt but also try and get some metrics back (i.e. 1-5 rating style questions) that we could use in post-mortems as some kind of guide for moving forward.

Here’s a screenshot of what we ended up with:

Overall it worked well. Of course, we got the usual silly comments (sandwiches were too cold, chairs were too comfy etc) but the response rate was > 50% for all events.

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That’s a really good mix of quant and qual. Agree paper can actually be more effective in terms of securing responses, you just have the extra time to analyse it. The great thing about digital is the ability to generate instant reports.

Just to update this thread - Eventbrite has produced a pack of downloadable conference feedback form templates. Get them here:

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