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October 4, 2021

Return on Intrigue – Return on Investment

by Malati Singh
Opus by Prudential Launch Singapore - Raffles butlers

Intrigue is inextricably linked to event success: the more you excite and enthrall and fill the audience with anticipation, the more memorable and effective the event is. But, even if the event ran like clockwork with hundreds of amazed attendees and out-of-this-world entertainment, how do you measure the extent of the success? Return on Investment (ROI). 

Roi means ‘king’ in French and ROI is certainly king when it comes to analysing event performance. Not only does ROI filter what works and what doesn’t into tangible data, but it also enables marketers to justify event costs (and therefore future event budgets) to boardroom decision-makers. However, measuring event marketing ROI is notoriously difficult – almost 75% of CMOs say proving ROI is their most pressing event challenge – and can be hard to gauge if you have lots of other marketing going on in parallel. Getting it right all starts with a plan. 

Sephora - Good Skincare Collection - Product Launch 2

Pre-event: base metrics

While some hard ROI figures – such as customers, sales and profits – are relatively easy to measure, other softer ROI numbers – think customer experience, brand awareness and brand loyalty – prove more troublesome to quantify. The trick is to decide on key performance metrics for each prior to the event journey, share the base statistics and then measure the changes at various intervals, such as build-up, during the event and post-production.

Whether it’s digital impressions, social media followers or attendee satisfaction, brands should decide their base metrics by looking at previous events (for easy comparison) and choosing metrics that best suit their objectives and event type. 


Post-event: multiple forms and touch points

At Rebel & Soul we recommend using multiple forms of tracking to demonstrate engagement and ROI. For example, for live events, we look at different touch points to analyse engagement, such as:


  • Emotions – Hidden camera systems within the event structure and sensory wearable tech bands placed on consumers enable you to anonymously monitor the audience’s reactions in the room and gauge their emotional response to various touchpoints of the event. 
  • Playful tech Interactive touch screens across event spaces gauge deeper level user engagement (e.g. we used both custom apps and interactive robots for two Heineken events). These are fun, playful and often gamified to encourage activity. 
  • Social media – Use algorithms and bespoke APIs to track attendees social media posts, specifically looking at location, photos, hashtags, interactions and comments.
  • Influencers – Track their pre, live and post-event posts and give their followers an exclusive offer trackable by unique links / QR codes. 
  • Digital – Film the event and create a virtual interactive experience for those who couldn’t attend to extend the reach (like we did for the Macallan Experience) and analyse the viewing data. 
  • PR Take the content of the experience to create photo and video content to distribute on your own marketing channels and those of partners and relevant press, track the reach by photo and video views, visitors to the sites the content was posted or column inches for print titles, 



For digital events, ROI tracking is made simpler due to the natural interlinking with data. For example, Rebel & Soul’s virtual neuroexperiences can be judged in terms of views, mentions and shares, but also registration rate, retention rate (how many stayed until the end) and brand website traffic after the event. In addition, online audiences respond well to virtual measurement tools, such as live polls and post-experience surveys. 


Get the data that you need

Not all data is of the same value. If you’re looking to enhance brand awareness, for instance, measuring the number of products sold should not hold the same weight as the number of positive social media mentions. 

As such, it’s crucial that brands weigh metrics depending on an individual event’s objectives and track the data accordingly. For example, if you want consumers to sign up to something specific because they attended your event then working out a per sign up / purchase ROI should be top of your list. 

Opus by Prudential Launch Singapore - Raffles butlers

Work with companies that know

Put simply, the better consumers remember an event, the better the return on investment. 

At Rebel & Soul, ROI is always front of mind and we use our award-winning neuroscience methodology INVOLVE® to maximise the ROI of our neuroexperiences. For example, we delivered a 6,000 x increase in year-on-year engagement for Glenfiddich’s Global Grand Cru Launch. We reached 2.6m Singaporeans, delivered 466,597 unique engagements and over 18 million brand impressions with a fluoro festival experience for Mastercard. We grew HSBC Jade’s annual revenue by 38% with our Origins of Luxury event, which had an ROI of 79.5 times the dollars spent.

So, if you’re a marketing professional on the hunt for some brand-enhancing, ROI-busting, memory-making events then look no further than Rebel & Soul.

For more information on event planning and management success, read our whitepaper: The ultimate guide to event planning & management.


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