Now that you have described what you want to measure, you can begin to design the methods you will use to capture these.

The next stage is to plan how you are going to capture the hard and rich data, from both inside and outside the event.

This images shows some of the methods you may want to think about.

Hard Data - What

The gathering of hard data should be aligned and hard-wired into your event planning and logistics. Some tips are:

Hard Data - Who
If part of your success criteria is engaging with people from a specific demographic group or geographic you should build this into your design for data capture. Many funders will require this but it is also vital information for you to understand who you are reaching – and who you are not. You can then respond to this creatively and practically in your planning for future events.

Remember to consider what hard data you need for each of the ‘who’ that you plan to engage with.

This could include:

You might want to make use of the following tools:

This demographic data can help you compare against general demographic information for residents and visitors.

If you repeat the survey each year then you will; also be able to identify audience trends and planned or unexpected changes in audience profile.

Build your survey directly into Google forms then the data will be automatically stored into a spread-sheet for easier manipulation into simple but powerful visuals.

Post-code information
Collecting post-codes and storing them in a spread-sheet enables you to make use of mapping software to see exactly where the impact of your event is felt.

It can also be mapped onto other mapped data so that you can build up a narrative about who your audiences are – particularly in understanding areas of low cultural engagement (by comparing with the audience agency website) and areas of multiple deprivation (by comparing with government open data).


Rich Data
Rich data helps you to understand how the event was experienced by the people you engaged with.

Designing your survey
Surveys are one of the most powerful ways of generating a large quantity of both hard and rich data about the people engaging with and experiencing your event.

When developing your questions think about:

Question Format
There are a number of different ways to phrase questions, which will enable you to show and share the rich data in a number of ways including closed choices such as multiple-choice, check-boxes, linear scale and drop-down menu; and open choices such as short descriptions and paragraphs.

Closed questions quantify answers so they can be shared as graphs and charts.

Open questions will provide you with a richer more personal impression of your festival. Personal testimonies and quotes can be used to enrich your evaluation. For Hastings we asked respondents to provide one word to describe their experience of the festival. We could then put this into the wordle app in order to paint a word picture of the event. These can be a simple but powerful tool in assessing the experiential impact of your festival.

Survey Resources
Respondents can interact with the survey in two ways:

The most effective campaign will combine both methods – you should never rely on self-directed online surveys alone.

For the ‘Live’ surveys,

For the On-line surveys,

Social media
Social media can also be a powerful tool in capturing and conveying an experiential narrative of your event. Remember the following tips:

Example: Survey


Social Media Analytics: