Proving ROI of a Tech event

Hi guys,

Recently started running Tech events. The method of paying/generating revenue for these events is by selling to a client, making the event free for the attendees as opposed to what I am used to and charging attendees.

Was wondering What is the best way to prove/display ROI.

For example the key benfits:

  • Brand respect
  • Hire great staff/recruitment
  • Get local insights

However, this is actually really hard to put a figure to. I know there is no easy solution just wondered if anyone had any hacks/tips/tricks



Hey Harry

Think i’m being slow this morning, but can you clarify - you’re selling the actual event concept to the client? e.g. “i’ll will organise this event for you and this is the ROI you will see…”


Sorry to clarify. Yes, looking to sell the events to big clients. (they are very keen) Just trying to work out the best way to prove the ROI to their Senior decision makers / Finance team.

Hi Harry

So the first place you’ll need to start is to figure out what success looks like to them (i.e. what is the return they want to see?)

It sounds like you’re going to essentially run a corporate event on their behalf, where they’re essentially the sole sponsor. If it’s a B2B client, then most likely they’re looking for leads or qualified leads, in which case to prove ROI you’d need to show you managed to attract x-number of prospective buyers/clients to the event for them.

You can infer this from their job titles and company names (assuming you capture this at sign up), or you could even use custom questions to delve further into their potential to be clients, by asking questions like ‘are you a budget holder / decision maker’ ‘what is your annual budget?’ etc.

You can then export these details and present it as a nice post-event report to your clients, saying that for their investment, they had (x-number) of qualified prospects in the room, accounting for a total budget spend of $Xm. If the cost per qualified lead at the event is lower than they usual spend, then you’re going to show them a positive ROI.

Of course that’s just one way to show ROI…other companies care more about things like brand lift (hard to show unless you have a very large audience and super buzzy social chatter going on around it), actual sales, engagement…there are a lot of objectives, so I’d just start there and work backwards.

Hope that helps (and actually answers your question!)

Yep i’d agree with Mark that the biggest way to prove ROI is around who will be attending and giving them access to the attendee data.

If they’re really interested in brand awareness/respect, then there’s plenty of data forecasting/reporting you can do by saying, “if we attract ‘x’ number of attendees, this will create “y” number of interactions online and social media or engagements with your hashtag, with a total number of people being reached online of 300,000. So this event will get your brand in front of 300,000 people.”

To do this kind of reporting you can use a lot of the native analytics dashboards on Facebook, Twitter, Linkedin etc, but you also use other free/cheap tools like hootsuite/buffer or tweetreach and many many more. Let me know if you want to know more about this.

But again, as @markw the place to start is by figuring out what the clients aim is