Seize the Moment: Why Surveying Event Attendees Onsite Matters

When it comes to hosting events, we all understand the importance of surveying attendees before and after the gathering. However, have you ever thought about polling your guests during the event itself? It might just be the key to unlocking valuable insights and enhancing the overall experience for your attendees.

In this blog, we’ll explore why surveying event attendees onsite is a game-changer, with a special focus on nonprofits. But fear not, these ideas can be adapted to various event types to make your next gathering interactive and engaging.


One powerful way to engage your audience during an event is by showing live, real-time poll results. It adds an element of excitement and interactivity, making the event unforgettable and creating opportunities for creativity. Here’s a list of questions to consider:

An Ice breaker: Get the conversation started with a light-hearted question. For example: What is your favorite song? (Multiple choice)

  • Pharrell Williams-“Happy”
  • Bon Jovi-“Livin’ On A Prayer”
  • Journey- “Don’t Stop Believin'”
  • Survivor- “Eye of the Tiger”

You can even end the evening playing the most popular song, creating a memorable moment for your attendees.

How did you hear about the Utopia Experience Gala?

  • Friend
  • Website
  • Social media
  • Word of mouth
  • Other (please specify)

Have you attended this event before? This question allows you to keep track of repeat attendees, understand the value they find in your event, and recognize their loyalty. Donor appreciation and recognition are vital.

How long have you been a supporter of our nonprofit? This question helps you understand the depth of commitment your attendees have to your cause. Our President Joey explains in the video below how you might consider utilizing an approach like this as a way of recognizing attendees, and connecting people to one another. Click below to watch!

How likely are you to recommend this event to a friend or colleague? A simple 1-10 scale question can provide valuable insights into the event’s overall impression.

Did you leave this gala with a greater understanding of our mission? A straightforward “Yes/No” question helps measure the effectiveness of your event in conveying your nonprofit’s mission. Add a section for text in case they have feedback.

What will you remember most about this event? (You could have a ranking order for this)

  • Community
  • Program
  • Mission Video
  • Food & Drink
  • Auction
  • Entertainment
  • Decor
  • Venue

Where do you suggest we hold our upcoming nonprofit conference? You can make this question interactive by providing a clickable image or map, making it easy for attendees to suggest potential locations. Example below:

Would you be interested in becoming a part of our community? This question opens doors for potential long-term engagement, such as monthly donations or volunteering.


The information you gather through onsite surveys can serve as valuable statistics and content for your website and social media channels. For example, you can create a word cloud to visualize how attendees feel about attending the event. Example below:


Keep surveys short: Attendees are more likely to participate if the survey doesn’t consume too much of their time.

Collaborate beforehand: Before your event, it’s essential to collaborate with your chosen AV company to plan how you’ll visually present your survey data, whether through charts, graphs, or live dashboards. Depending on your event, consider the best display technology. This can include large screens, projectors, or LED walls. The production team should set up the necessary software to display the data which might involve custom-built solutions. Test with dummy data before the actual event to ensure that the real-time aspect is functioning correctly.

Incentivize feedback: Consider offering small incentives or prizes for survey participation to further encourage engagement.

We encourage you to be unique and not fear trying new things because of how people might react. Your attendees will like giving feedback. People give energy towards the things they get to create. In this case, you’re allowing them to co-create their experience.

By seizing the moment and surveying event attendees onsite, you not only make your event more interactive and engaging but also gather invaluable insights that can help you enhance your future gatherings and foster a stronger sense of community among your supporters. So, go ahead and make your next event a memorable and insightful experience!

Fill out the form to talk with the Utopia team and go through your event objectives and how we can make the event a success.