As a brand ambassador, do you know just how valuable your post event recap is? In addition to being used by your agency for internal event tracking purposes, clients and brands use your data and feedback to measure the effectiveness of their experiential marketing initiatives. Please review the following tips to make sure your event recaps are both accurate and useful to our clients.
1) TAKE YOUR TIME
We always recommend that our talent bring a printed copy of the report to the event or promotion so they can take notes and write down consumer quotes. Taking notes steadily throughout the day will help you answer the questions on the report so you don’t have to rely on your memory. Double check your counts when taking beginning and ending inventory of product samples or promotional materials. These numbers are important for logistical and budget reasons.
Take time to think about what you are writing and remember your audience. Your agency and the brand client will be reading your comments and remarks. Remember your “voice” and make sure you are writing in a professional manner. The wording you use should be more formal than the way you typically speak. Remember the report is an important element and should be considered a part of your event. Clients are more likely to request specific talent who present themselves in a professional way. The way you write your recap reports is taken into important consideration.
2) WRITE LEGIBLY
Some clients and projects still require an actual paper recap report that you can submit electronically via scan or photo. As mentioned above, we suggest that you make a copy of the report to take notes. This is especially important if your report must be hand written due to the request of a store stamp or on site manager signature.
You will want one copy for notes and to edit comments and then the clean copy should be neatly written and contain the necessary signatures and/or stamps. If you make a mistake, use whiteout or just put one line through the error–don’t scribble or cross out. Hand written reports need to be very neat so they can be read by the client.
Take special care when scanning hand written reports and check the image views before sending to your agency to ensure they are readable!
3) USE A WORD PROCESSING PROGRAM
If you have to submit an online recap report, we recommend that you write answers first in a word processing program so you can easily edit your responses and check your spelling and grammar.
Another advantage of using Microsoft Word or a similar program, is that you can start and save your document and walk away from it if you have to. Some online reports time-out after a while, or if you accidentally leave the page, you will lose everything you wrote! Avoid this by using Word or an alternative to type out your answers, review the spelling and grammar, and then copy and paste into the online form.
4) BE THOROUGH AND DETAILED
Remember, you are not texting your report in. Do not give one word answers or phrases to questions that require more depth. For example, a report we have with a food brand asks, “What other types of products would the consumer like to see us make?”.
Some talent may submit the following answer: “Candy, drinks, crackers.”
Yet a more professional, well thought-out response would be:
“Several female consumers who enjoyed the product were interested in crackers or another type of crispy snack. A few younger consumers thought it would be great to have these flavors in a candy bar. A middle-aged gentleman suggested a protein shake type drink in the chocolate mint flavor. He thought if it tasted more like a dessert, more people would be interested in the product.”
This answer gives more detail into what type of consumer suggested what products and gave very specific feedback. This type of information is important for brands to hear as it gives them direct insight into what their consumer is looking for.
Another example would be …
Question: What was the store traffic during your demo?
Typical answer: Slow
Better answer: Customer traffic during the first two hours of my demo was slower than usual. After speaking with the manager, I attribute this to the early start time of the demo. The store manager told me that on Sundays there are more consumers after noon with a peak time being noon-3pm. He suggested we shift the start time of our demo time to 11am or later so we can meet more consumers during the peak shopping times.
The latter gives your agency critical feedback that they may not have known. Now, they can make adjustments to the event time to maximize consumer interactions.
5) PROOFREAD, THEN PROOFREAD AGAIN
If you are using Word to type your response, take advantage of the spell and grammar check. However, don’t blindly accept their changes and be sure to read their suggestions before you just accept them. Some rules do not apply or they offer a suggestion that doesn’t fit. It’s a computer program, and it is a tool to help you proofread, but you still need to review the report carefully and double check your work before submitting to your agency.
Misspelled words are very common on recap reports. In addition to using the wrong word (too vs. to, they’re vs. their), there are several words that are commonly misspelled. Please review this chart as a refresher on how to spell commonly misspelled words.
Beyond spelling or word choice, there are several common grammatical errors that plague most people’s writing. Please take a minute to review the following list of common errors and keep these in mind before you write your next recap report.
6) TAKE CLEAR PHOTOS
Most if not all event recaps have an event photo requirement. Please follow the exact photo requirements for your event provided by the agency. Each event may have different requirements about what type of photos are needed or how they are labeled or submitted.
Below is a general guideline for event recap photos.
- Take at least 15 photos so you have enough to make a 10 photo requirement in case any are blurry or unusable.
- Take the following types of photos:
- Wide shot of demo experience setup
- Consumers holding up the product, branded materials, & standing in front of product/setup.
- Brand Ambassador interacting with consumers and handing samples
- Consumers smiling and posing for photo while holding the product, premiums, coupons etc.
- A mix of posed and candid photos of yourself/other staff
- The products/merchandiser/special displays of product
7) MEET YOUR DEADLINES
The agency has given you a specific deadline for a reason. They need time to compile the information and send to the client in the manner it is requested. Your agency may have hundreds of the same type of event running simultaneously and they need time to process all the reports and/or photos.
Also, your recap is often used as documentation that you executed the event at the assigned time and in the required manner. This is typically a requirement to process talent payment for an event. In order not to have any payments delayed or your event being considered a ‘non-execute,’ it is critically important that you meet the required deadlines. When you accept an event booking, you are accepting it in its entirety and it is not complete until all reports are submitted. So be sure to make reports a priority!
Use these tips to write better event recap reports. Your agency will love you for it!
Does your business need help planning for or developing your presence at a live trade show or event? Do you need experienced professional talent at your booth to act as brand ambassadors? Are you ready to take your marketing ROI to the next level?