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Host more successful events when you use surveys to collect feedback from your attendees.

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Summary:

What's better than having a successful event? Understanding why it worked, and what people liked or disliked. Learn how to create post-event surveys with example questions for common survey types.

After you host an event, you probably think you know how it went. Until that is, a colleague stops you in the hallway to tell you how much she enjoyed the karaoke mixer you thought hit a sour note with the office.

Experiences vary, which is why, after any event, it’s important to collect feedback from as many participants as humanly possible. Event management is an enormous task, so the more data you collect, the more insights you have for planning future events. To make sure that you are getting the most valuable feedback, we've broken down the most common post-event survey types (public events, training courses, conferences, etc.) with five example questions for each.

A post-event survey is a tool for capturing valuable feedback from attendees, so you can get insights into positive or negative sentiments of the event. Post-event surveys generally contain a mix of question types. Typically, these question types yield valuable feedback about how the event’s presentations, location, and even the food.  Sending surveys after events can help provide a list of action items for your next event to ensure it’s successful.

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By asking your attendees for their opinions, you’re sending them a message that you care about their experience, and you’ll use their feedback to inform future events.

Rather than go with your assumption that a certain speaker didn’t hit the mark or hit it out of the park, you’ll have participant responses to gauge the success or failure of your sessions and overall event. Check out this entertainment event feedback survey template to help you find questions that may improve presentations and performances for your next event.

You can use a variety of different surveys after your events. One in particular, a Net Promoter Score® (NPS) survey can help you gauge future growth of your events by asking attendees if they would recommend it to a friend. That will give you an indication of whether your next event could have a larger turnout from word of mouth.

Constructive survey feedback will help you determine how to plan future events for the best attendee experience. It can also help you refine your marketing methods to improve attendance. Feedback will help you improve the ease of the registration process, the quality of the food, the friendliness of the event staff, and even the costs of production. This event planning survey template is great for looking ahead at future events.

You can customize your survey with the questions above or send it as-is in minutes. Learn more about our plans and pricing, or get started for free

Public events like fundraisers, store openings, and tradeshows help your organization reach people outside your immediate circle. Maximize public participation in future events by finding out what keeps people coming back for more.

  1. How satisfied were you with the event? 

Ask participants to rate the date, location, speakers, vendors, and catering of the event. Ask follow-up questions about the most important aspects of the event, like the keynote speaker.

  1. What did you like most about the event? 

Leave this question open-ended. While post-event surveys are great for identifying pain points, they also help you discover what you did right.

  1. What did you like least about the event? 

Invite participants to give constructive feedback with a straightforward question like this. Leave this question open-ended, so that participants can elaborate.

  1. How likely are you to attend one of our events in the future? 

It’s far easier to convince a former participant to attend another of your events than it is to convince someone completely new. Discover how many participants are ready to join your future events.

  1. How likely are you to recommend our events to a friend?

People are more likely to purchase a product that a friend shared with them because softer sell. As such, events are easily influenced by referrals.

Post-event survey questions don’t have to be complicated. For best results, be direct and succinct. Ask for honest, constructive feedback with straightforward questions like these.

Professionals come together at conferences to share knowledge, set industry standards, and build their networks. Ensure that you only host awesome conferences by asking participants these follow-up questions after every event.

  1. How satisfied were you with the conference? 

Ask participants to rate the date, location, topic, mixers, sessions, speakers, and catering of the conference. Evaluate the event’s overall success with this question, before diving into the specifics.

  1. In your opinion, did the conference meet its objectives? 

A conference without clear objectives can make attendees feel frustrated, like their time is being wasted. Ask participants to rate whether or not the conference met concrete objectives like, for example, setting specific professional standards.

  1. How well was the conference structured? 

Even the best speakers don’t shine at poorly organized events. Discover how intuitive your participants found the conference timetable to be.

  1. Was there enough time for discussion? 

Nothing kills conference excitement faster than a droning speaker does. Conferences thrive on a subtle balance between instruction and discussion.

  1. Which topics would you like to see covered at future conferences? 

Send surveys after events to gather information for your next event, in addition to evaluating the last event. Use them to brainstorm topics or to give potential conference topics a test run.

A great conference doesn’t end on the last day. It leaves participants with meaningful connections that they’ll follow up with later, and with speaker anecdotes that they’ll be repeating for years. Figure out if your conference is one of the great ones by reaching out to participants afterwards.

A successful professional training course expands its participants’ career opportunities by offering them new, useful skills. In a changing job market, ensure your courses measure up every time by routinely asking participants these 5 follow-up questions.

  1. How satisfied were you with the course? 

Ask participants to rate the date, location, sessions, and instructors. Be sure to include each instructor separately, since participants might be satisfied with one instructor, but not another.

  1. How useful was the information presented in this course? 

Ideally, participants will be able to immediately apply the information they take away from training courses to their jobs. Evaluate the relevance of the course with this question.

  1. Did the course improve your skills? 

Ask participants to rate whether or not the course improved their skills in each of the areas it was designed to improve.

  1. Did you have an opportunity to ask questions during the course? 

Gauge whether or not participants felt comfortable speaking up during the course—or were even given the opportunity to speak up—with this question.

  1. What would have made the course better? 

Don’t shy away from asking for feedback outright. End your post-event survey with an open-ended question that lets participants comment on whatever they think is most important.

Training courses need to evolve to stay relevant. Don’t make decisions in the dark—use the valuable data you collect in post-event survey questions to steer your training courses toward continued success. 

While it’s a good idea to ask participants for feedback before, during, and after an event, sending surveys after events often provides the best insights. Use the questions above as a jumping-off point when writing your own post-event survey questions.

Dive deeper into participants’ experiences by asking detailed questions that provide useful information. 

  1. What were your favorite features of the event? 

You may ask this as a closed-ended ranking question, so participants can easily let you know what made the biggest impression, or an open-ended question to allow elaboration.

  1. What, if anything, did you dislike about this event? 

While you may not want to ask for negative feedback, it’s important to know your shortcomings. Learn from them for your next event.

  1. How satisfied were you with the networking opportunities provided? 

One of the main reasons professionals attend conferences and other corporate events is networking. This rating scale question lets you know whether you provided ample opportunities for connections to be made.

  1. What was your biggest takeaway from this event? 

Your event should bring immediate value to participants. Find out what they perceive as the most important learning from your event.

  1. Would you attend another event like this in the future? 

The “yes/no” answers will key you into the success of your event and the possible loyalties of attendees. This data is measurable and valuable.

  1. What is your job title? 

Find out if your marketing efforts reached your target audience.

  1. How likely are you to recommend this event to a friend or colleague? 

Answers will indicate overall satisfaction with the event and potential growth.

  1. What topics would you like to see covered in future events? 

Get a start on planning next year’s event with topics your attendees are interested in. 

  1. Was the signup process for our event easy? 

This is especially helpful if your attendance was lower than expected. You may find that the signup process was too complicated.

  1. Did the event meet your expectations? 

A simple yes or no will let you know if you under-delivered or over-promised.

When you write your own questions, make sure they are worded well, formatted correctly, and carefully considered.

Successful event planners use pre-event survey questions to get to know participants before events. Pre-event surveys yield beneficial information that will make your event more comfortable, accessible, and successful for you and your attendees. Pre-event survey questions also provide key information for use in planning future events.

Shortly before an event, use a pre-event survey to gather information about your marketing methods, preferred audience, and special needs of your participants. Send the survey in a confirmation email or present it as a popup when registration is complete.

  1. How did you hear about this event? 

Find out which of your marketing efforts are most effective. Use the information to target your audience for greater reach for your next event.

  1. What sessions are you most interested in? 

Find out what the excitement level is around certain speakers or agenda items. This will help later when you are looking for event sponsors and growing your audience.

  1. What is your favorite social media platform? 

Know where your audience is most likely to engage so you can direct your efforts in the right channels.

  1. Have you attended this event before? 

It’s great to know your event generating loyalty in attendees. This helps prove repeat engagement, a metric that potential sponsors will be very interested in. 

  1. Do you have any special needs or requirements that we should be aware of? 

Ensure your event is accessible to anyone by providing multiple choices including mobility, hearing, sight, and other assistance. Add a comment box so attendees can add options you may have overlooked.

  1. Do you have any dietary restrictions we should be aware of? 

Whether it’s a food allergy, sensitivity, or cultural food restriction, if a participant can’t enjoy the refreshments, it puts a damper on their day. 

Pro tip: Include essential food information at the event.

  1. Were you able to easily find all of the information you need about our event?

Ensure that there are no confusing parts of the registration process or locating information regarding speakers, agendas, and more.

Types of post-event survey questions

There are several types of survey questions, and you’ll notice that some of them overlap, for example, a Likert scale question is a rating question and a closed-ended question. The properties of each type of question are what determine its usefulness for your survey. Consider what type of feedback you’re looking for to help you choose the best questions for your specific needs. 

Read more about the different types of survey questions

A Likert scale question is a closed-ended question with a series of answers that rank satisfaction from one extreme attitude to another. It’s a specific type of rating scale that focuses on an odd-numbered range of equally distributed answers with a neutral choice at the center. While a Likert scale is a type of rating scale, the opposite is not necessarily true. Likert scale questions exclusively focus on answers on a defined spectrum.

You’ve probably taken surveys like this to rate your satisfaction with a service or experience you’ve attended.

Likert scale question examples:

  1. How satisfied are you with the variety of topics presented at the conference?
  • Very satisfied
  • Somewhat satisfied
  • Neither satisfied nor dissatisfied
  • Somewhat dissatisfied
  • Very dissatisfied
  1. I’m happy with the amount of information presented in today’s sessions.
  • Strongly agree
  • Agree
  • Neither agree nor disagree
  • Disagree
  • Strongly disagree

Open-ended questions explore a survey respondent’s insights and opinions. These questions ask for the respondent to provide their own individual answers in short-answer format. The answers don’t provide statistical information, but the qualitative data is invaluable.

Open-ended question examples:

  • What was your favorite part of the conference?
  • Tells us about your least favorite part of the offsite?
  • Do you have any suggestions for next year’s event?

Closed-ended questions include multiple-choice, drop-down choices, checkboxes, and ranking questions. Unique responses aren’t allowed—the respondent must choose from a list of predetermined answers.

Closed-ended question examples:

Are you planning to return to next year’s event?

  1. Yes 
  2. No 
  3. I don’t know

The event provided me with valuable information.