Tag Archives: meeting trends

Selecting the Right Venue for your Meeting

The most important step before selecting a location or venue is to understand the overall goals, objectives and outcomes desired at the end of your conference.  Is the purpose to incentivize or reward?  Is the goal to strategize and plan? Or, is the goal to educate and train?  The answer to these questions may assist your organization to select the right type of venue and location.  Though budget is always a factor; the desired outcomes should be the first consideration.

Cities and resort destinations are often the first locations considered for sales launches and incentive trips.  These destinations are convenient to attractions, dining and shopping.  If building a cohesive sales team is important to your organization, then perhaps other destinations and venue types should be explored.  Conference centers are often overlooked because they do not provide a traditional hotel experience.

Most conference centers are dedicated only to meetings.  Your attendees are not competing for attention with other leisure travelers and non-meeting guests.  If your conference center is a member of   IACC, the International Association for Conference Centers, then that conference center has implemented a set of benchmarks within their venue to reflect the highest standards, facilities, technology, and are modeled with strong corporate social responsibility in mind.  Conference centers simplify the buying process through offering a CMP, or Complete Meeting Package, to encompass meals, breaks, meeting room rentals, basic a/v and internet.  Many items such as executive board chairs often come standard.  Less add-on fees and fewer hidden charges are assessed.

Conference Centers provide an environment for learning, networking, and team building.  The open spaces and wide variety of meeting and event space provide near limitless opportunities for you to create a meeting that achieves your objectives while creating a memorable and meaningful program for your attendees.

Content courtesy of The National Conference Center  

New Survey Finds Non-Dues Revenue a Hidden Topic in Many Associations

The Association Research Board has released the findings of a nationwide survey of association executives.

The data reveals most associations lack a sense of urgency and direction in seeking new sources of non-dues revenue.

Digging into the data provides interesting insights:

  • A quarter of the executives never discuss the need for additional revenue with their boards.
  • New non-dues Revenue generation is only a concern of about one-third of the respondents.
  • Among associations that attempt to increase revenue, only half call their programs a success.

A copy of the Association Research Board report can be found here.

What’s In and Out for 2017 Meetings

By Al Rickard, CAE

It’s a new year, and the meetings industry is looking ahead to what will make their events compelling in 2017.

Carrie Abernathy, CMP, CEM, CSEP, Director of Education & Events at Practice Greenhealth, predicts more “attendee engagement through technology. There will be a bigger focus on attendee ROI by connecting them to their peers and coaches/mentors and speakers at events. There will be a shift toward using technology to connect people, such as the launch of ‘Brain Dates’ at PCMA’s Convening Leaders. Attendees need to demonstrate immediate ROI when attending conferences and so planners are working to meet those needs.”

“One thing that will always be ‘in’ in the meetings industry is networking and the opportunity to learn from people in a live setting,” says Suzanne Berry, MBA, CAE, Senior Strategic Advisor to the CEO at the Certified Financial Planner Board of Standards, Inc. “You can’t duplicate that type of learning online and capture the insights and nuances of new ideas that you get at an in-person meeting.”

Suzanne and her husband, Peter, spent many years running an association management company and have run hundreds of meetings and seen the results they produce.

Peter Berry offers this thought on what’s “out” for meetings in 2017: “Loud music. People come to meetings to connect and talk to each other, so give them an opportunity to do that. Have the reception and dinner in a relatively quiet space and save the loud music for later at night for people who want to dance.”

Kristin Clarke, CAE, Executive Director of the American Physical Therapy Association Section on Women’s Health, notes, “Sustainability continues to be important operationally not only because of cost but even more so from the standpoint of organizational values and alignment with member expectations. With more than 75 percent of communities engaged in recycling, attendees notice if they can’t find an easy recycling bin or if you serve coffee to thousands using Styrofoam cups.”

What else can you expect to be “In” and “Out” in the meetings and travel industry? Here’s a snapshot:

In Out
Jeans and Casual Dress Neckties
Facebook Live Expensive Videos
Theater in the Round Lecterns and Podiums
Retargeting Ads Mass Marketing
Connection Receptions Sit-Down Dinners
GMO-Free Produce Processed Food
TSA Pre-Check Shoeless Airport Security Check
Calendar Appointment Requests Formal Invitations
Alexa Siri
Phone Alarm Alarm Clock
Real News Fake News

What would you add to the list? Leave a comment and let us know!

Al Rickard, CAE, is President of Association Vision, a Washington, DC-area communications company;arickard@assocvision.com.

The IMEX A to Z of 2017: 5 trends to watch as the year unfolds

2016 was no slouch of a year for the meetings industry nor, indeed, for the world at large. Dramatic forces were at play and many of us shared a sense that, even if we wanted to grasp the pace or nature of change taking place, we barely had the time or the head space to do so. 2016 was pivotal – and it felt like it.

Looking ahead to 2017, IMEX has identified five trends which, starting at A and ending at Z, are anything but simple or linear in the impact they’ll have on the meetings and events industry. In fact, we already predict that by 2018 ‘clarity’ will be the watchword of the moment.


Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Virtual Reality (VR) used to be the future. Then, over the last two years, the first VR headsets started to appear at IMEX (Frankfurt and America), with destinations and venues as the ‘early adopters’. By the end of 2016, both technologies had made the final transition from fringe to freely available. The future had arrived.

Grip, the world’s first artificial intelligence (AI) event networking solution won the #IMEXpitch at IMEX America in Las Vegas. Elsewhere, at IBM’s World of Watson conference, AI was the ‘driver’ of a 3D-printed, driverless minibus that toured the show floor, giving passengers restaurant recommendations.

In the world of virtual reality, WorldViz, a behind-the-scenes VR company that’s been working on large-scale, enterprise solutions, launched its new platform for business communication. The project, codenamed “Skofield”, allows remote users to make cross-platform presentations in VR.

Both AI and VR offer exciting new frontiers for suppliers in the meetings and events industry. Expect AI, and especially VR (not forgetting Augmented Reality), to capture both the imagination and the headlines in 2017.


One of the challenges of being at a large business event is the lingering sense that there are potential (and great) new contacts all around. But do we all identify, locate and then meet those new contacts? The rise of social media but, more importantly, of networking technologies and apps is fast changing our ability to satisfy that need. This urge to find and connect with ‘the right kind’ of each other at live events is what IMEX calls ‘finding your tribe.’

This trend is about both targeting and personalisation. Witness Loopd, winners of the 2015 IMEXpitch and (once again) Grip, the 2016 IMEXpitch winners. Equally, Zenvoy, partnered with IMEX to provide a pre, during and post-show ‘match-making’ service for buyers/attendees to meet or work with each other; a natural add-on to the show’s core appointment system, which enables buyers to meet with exhibitors.

Witness too the rise of snapchat and private messaging. Many of the big conversations at shows, conferences and other events are now happening online – and in private. Where social media platforms such as Twitter, Facebook and Instagram bring the immediate show experience – and audience feedback – to life in a dynamic way (especially with the advent of Facebook Live), Snapchat and private messaging services allow sub-groups and ‘tribes’ to find each other, talk and make plans in private.

As many of these tech-connecting services race to become the favourite, go-to brand of the moment, expect to see some triumph and scale up to great acclaim, while others simply don’t – or can’t – keep pace.


‘Are PCOs and hotels prepared to manage the increasing disruption and challenges in accommodation services for international meetings?’ was the title of a hot-topic discussion at ICCA’s recent Conference in Kuching, Malaysia.

‘Increasing disruption’ aptly sums up the prevalence of disruptive forces not only in the meetings and events industry but also all around us. The ICCA discussion focussed on the impact of booking portals and event scammers with fake websites but Airbnb has similar potential to disrupt the traditional meetings space market.

‘Disruption’ could easily lay claim to being THE word of 2016.  Dr Kaihan Krippendorff’s PCMA Business School session at IMEX in Frankfurt – ‘The Outthinker Playbook – Devising Disruptive Strategies’ drew a large and eager audience, as did Jay Samit’s presentation ‘Disrupt You!’ at IMEX America 2016.

‘Disruption’ also describes the impact of unexpected political results in 2016 – namely Brexit and the U.S. Presidential election. Even though the fallout has so far been short-term, most organisations (in all industries worldwide) are on alert for the long-term consequences. Harking back to a favoured phrase from five or six years ago, 2017 heralds a sense that ‘disruption’ is set to be the ‘new normal’.

Last year at the British Psychological Society’s annual conference, Professor Sir Cary Cooper said a compulsion to deal with messages caused UK employees to become less productive than many of their international counterparts.

“For people to be working at night, weekends and holiday on emails is not good for the health of our country,” he told the BBC. “We need to ban emails [sent and received] within the same building,” he said, advocating instead for face-to-face meetings and phone calls.

Independent research by Atos Origin highlighted that the average employee spends 40% of their working week dealing with internal emails which add no value to the business.

Add to that newsletters, social media notifications and e-shots and it’s clear to see why many people are eager to seize back their time.  In effect, this trend is a flight towards more authentic and meaningful productivity.

Expect unsubscribes and opt-outs to rise as individuals reclaim their inboxes, their sanity and their time.

In turn, the purposeful creation and appreciation of ‘no-thing’ time (using planning approaches such as White Space) will win more and more fans in 2017.


Workplace demographic shifts really gathered pace in 2016, with Generation Z now heading over the horizon.  By the end of this decade Zs will account for around 20 per cent of the work force.

Born in the late 1990s onwards, Zs were the first to grow up with the Internet and portable technology at their fingertips, virtually from birth! According to various research reports, compared with those born in the 15 or so years before them – Generation Y, the Millennials – they are distinctly different (hence their disparaging, alternative label, ‘Generation Snowflake’…because every little snowflake is unique).

From a communications and meetings perspective, Zs are tech-intuitive, tech-based multi-taskers and good at online collaboration but tend to have weaker face-to-face and social skills, are liable to be distracted easily and have a short attention span.

According to the 2015 Way to Work survey by Adecco Staffing USA, as employees Zs want financial stability (a result of living through recession and the burden of student debt), a dream job, entrepreneurial opportunities, a flexible work-life balance, regular face-to-face mentoring and plenty of feedback from the boss. In pursuit of this they’re likely to job-hop in their early years.

As an event or meetings audience Zs are set to place strong, new demands on planners, venues and brands. Whether they prove to be high value or just high maintenance, 2017 should reveal all.

IACC Reveals the Top Meeting Package Trends for 2016

iacc-logoUseful tips for meeting planners and meeting venues contribute towards better meetings and conference experiences

Following research among the 378 members of IACC, the association released its Top  Meeting Package Trends for 2016, which are influencing meeting planners and venue operators across the globe.

The concept of meeting packaging is one where the required components provided by a venue are included in a per person package.  The concept carries different names in different parts of the world (such as Complete Meeting Package, Day Meeting Package, Day Delegate Rate, 24-Hour Rate etc), but the concept is the same throughout IACC’s membership in 22 countries.  An IACC-certified meeting venue must offer a package which includes food and beverage, meeting room hire and basic AV).  See IACC’s Guide to Quality Standards for more information on what it takes to be an IACC-certified venue.

Mark Cooper, IACC’s CEO, commented, “Meeting Planners not only prefer easy-to-manage delegate packages for their meetings, they also expect delegate packages to be creative and fit their specific meeting objectives.  Venues that specialise in meetings, also understand that planners need to be able to buy in transparent and easy-to-budget ways.”  Cooper continued with, “We are seeing some very innovative meeting packages available at IACC member venues in 22 countries across the globe.”

Trend #1    95% of venues have offered non-traditional meeting packages for over 5 years.  IACC member venues surveyed stated that they have been offering flexible and highly creative delegate meeting packages for over 5 years. As a result, they have developed packages over time, which meet the specific needs and requirements of planners and delegates. They are now experts in customising packages.

Trend #2    Innovative packages developed by venues and clients
Two-thirds of delegate packages were crafted and developed by the leadership at IACC-member venues, using their specialized knowledge in selling meeting space in this inclusive and consultative way. At the same time, 1/3rd of those surveyed reported that their planner clients had a direct hand in developing a package that was bespoke to them and their needs. Being able to influence the way a venue packages services and products is a true demonstration of collaboration between venue and client.

Trend #3    Fifty-five percent reported that meeting planners wanted to tailor a package specifically to meet their needs. Offering inclusive delegate packages provides certain differentiation, but being able to tailor a package to the individual client is a further step. With 55% reporting their clients prefer flexible packaging, this is not a rare approach any more. Of the packages offered which include guest room accommodation and meals, 56% of responders cited that these packages were becoming more customised.

Trend #4  Sixty-five percent reported that planners are starting to request new package inclusions.  A significant number of members surveyed reported that clients are starting to ask for packages beyond the normal meeting room, F&B and tech inclusions. The top additional items requested were teambuilding, local cultural trips, coaching and facilitation. Although many IACC venues offer free delegate WiFi, the inclusion of high bandwidth WiFi to support the use of collaborative technologies was highlighted as a growing trend.  The survey also indicated that the inclusion of collaborative technologies such as audience participation and meeting apps, had potential for future packaged pricing.

Trend #5  Top inclusions in customised packages.  Food & beverage enhancements lead the list of inclusions, with 76% of those surveyed reporting they tailor packages with non-standard F&B items.  Indoor teambuilding and meeting room configurations were 2nd at 70% and outdoor teambuilding  was 4th.  Also included in the list of components used to customise delegate packages were AV, WiFi and culinary teambuilding activities.

Trend #6  Delegate packages are good for 3rd parties as well!  Thirty-five percent of the venues surveyed reported that third party booking agents could consider all components of the delegate package as part of their commercial terms with the venue.

Trend #7  Flexible meeting packages are here to stay.  Although flexible meeting packages — where the client can build a package that fits their needs exactly — have only become widespread amongst IACC venues since 2008, all surveyed believe that this is a concept that is here for the long term and demonstrates that they are true partners to their clients and understand their needs.

The concept of meeting packaging is one where the required components provided by a venue are included in a per person package.  The concept carries different names in different parts of the world (such as Complete Meeting Package, Day Meeting Package, Day Delegate Rate, 24-Hour Rate etc), but the concept is the same throughout IACC’s membership in 22 countries, where a IACC certified meeting venue must offer a package which includes food and beverage, meeting room hire and basic AV).  See IACC’s Guide to Quality Standards for more information on what it takes to be an IACC-certified venue.

IACC is the only global professional association, which represents small to medium sized venues focused on meetings, training courses and conferences. All members conform to a comprehensive global set of criteria and standards. The association serves its members by being the global thought-leader in the meetings industry and currently has 355 members in 21 countries in the Americas, Europe and Australasia.

High Tech Meeting Trends

The latest technology toys are creating some spectacular meeting innovations. From drones to virtual reality, tech tools are allowing for new ways to collect metrics, showcase products that otherwise would be impossible to display, and engage attendees.
Drones are here, and they are being put to use. Amazon made headlines with its testing of a drone-based delivery service. In events, drones are providing new touch points for consumers as Pepto-Bismol did at Six Flags Theme Parks where consumers could “Tweet for Relief” and have Pepto-Bismol delivered via a drone drop. Expect drones to impact the event planning space as well. Drones can be used to identify areas of congestion such as at registration or break areas and allow staff to react. They can help to locate lost freight by flying over and searching the show floor. Drones can be used to capture data from the air regarding traffic flow, dwell times, and areas of interest.
Holograms have been around for years in a static capacity, but they are starting to become more interactive and advanced. At the U.S. Open tennis tournament, American Express activated an augmented reality Pro Com, where fans could pose with a hologram of professional tennis player Sloane Stephens. Beyond photo activations, holograms they are getting more high-tech and animated. Imagine delivering a CEO keynote to satellite streaming events using hologram technology.
At the Healthcare Information and Management Systems Show, Siemens demonstrated a new IT software solution with a 25-foot display of 188 iPad tablets linked to each other to create synchronized media showcases. Other health care companies are using tablets and software-enabled accessories to demonstrate, among things, how to administer medicine with a syringe the correct way. On top of that, inline entertainment magic tricks and trivia games powered with tablet kiosk stations are just the tip of the iceberg on how tablets and software will continue to inform and, more importantly, engage and entertain.
Virtual reality is making the expected shift from a hot entertainment tool to an educational tool that drives sales. Take Lowe’s Home Improvement, which in Canada has been testing a service called Holloroom. It allows shoppers to enter the dimension of a room to renovate, select all the products and materials, and then strap on a pair of Oculus Rift goggles to virtually tour their room and finishes. Bosch Automotive Parts this year took an Oculus Rift educational room on the road, designing virtual software that allowed mechanics to go inside its engine parts.

Advances in technology are creating exciting opportunities at meetings and trade shows. Not only do they capture attendees’ attention, they also provide new mediums by which deliver information and educate in a very memorable way.

The Meeting Planner Inside Scoop: The Return of Face to Face Meetings

meeting planner inside scoopWe recently sat down with seasoned meeting planner David Williams, Executive Director for the International Association for Energy Economics and CP.com Advisory Board member.

We got the meeting planner inside scoop on his perspective on the meetings industry’s past year and what 2014 may bring.

As with most industries, 2013 was a little slower than expected, but Williams was pleased that the Energy Economics Industry, which is a recession resistant industry, saw good turnout at conferences and a strong membership. “Overall, however, the meetings industry is lagging the general economy. We have slower growth, but slow growth is better than no growth,” says Williams.

In fact, with a rising membership, the IAEE has had its largest conferences ever, and has been able to draw attendees to the conferences by being able to host them in first tier destinations such as New York and San Francisco. He says, “We are now quite good at running meetings efficiently so it is easier to maximize savings and revenues and still get into the top tier locations that attracts more attendees.”

One challenge Williams sees in the meetings industry is sponsorship. “Sponsorship is a shrinking commodity,” he says. “We are going to wrestle with this for a while. With consolidation happening in so many industries, the pieces [of sponsorship] are getting smaller. It’s getting harder to sell and show value to companies for their sponsorship. And as all industries cut all portions of their budgets, sponsorship money gets cut as well.” Williams feels this will continue throughout 2014. In fact, most conferences now hold sessions on how to raise additional sponsorship money. Williams says that these sessions are always packed.

Williams sees several trends for 2014. Of course, eco-friendliness is always trendy, and he sees more and more strides being made. He says, “Good strides are being made to move away from paper. Many meetings, ours included, are no longer putting together registration bags. We are just giving out a name badge and a program. Those packs are being replaced with brochures on tables so fewer are needed and fewer are thrown away.” Technology is still a huge trend. “Technology will make or break us,” says Williams. “It will always be present. Meetings needs tweets and apps, it’s just the way it is now.”

One trend Williams sees happening and would love to hear findings from other planners, is the decline in webinar participation. He has a feeling that this form of meeting may be over, as more people want to get to back to face-to-face meetings. “I get the impression that folks find that participants are not really engaged and aren’t dialing in to webinars anymore.”

When asked about what advice he has for those entering the meeting planning industry, Williams said, “Learn how to negotiate. Learn and refine those skills. They are critical to your job. And remember that it never hurts to ask. You just have to keep at it. Ask for a little more each time. You don’t learn the whole industry overnight, you just keep asking, and learning, and learning from your mistakes.”


The Meeting Planner Inside Scoop: 2013 Takeaways and 2014 Predictions

meeting planner inside scoopWe recently sat down with seasoned meeting planner Darlene Lyons, President of EzEvents and CP.com Advisory Board member.

We got the meeting planner inside scoop on what lessons she learned from the 2013 meeting season, and what we can  look forward to for 2014.

2013 Takeaways – A Rebounding Economy Offers Pros and Cons

  • Larger Budgets: Lyons found many of her clients in 2013 had larger than expected budgets to put towards their meetings. This is certainly a signal of a strengthening economy!
  • Rise in Demand Limits Meeting Space & Guest Room Availability: Lyons said this happened quickly, and was an unpleasant surprise for her clients, who expected high availability and lower rates. 
  • Increased Lead Times: a direct result of the increase in demand has been longer lead times. Sales staff are inundated with more RFPs to respond to, and planners are experiencing longer wait times. Lyons says that ConventionPlanit.com makes it easy to get an organized search for properties done, as well help to get a response. “Venues respond quicker to ConventionPlanit.com,” she says.
  • More Research: another side effect of the demand, planners are finding it more difficult to secure their first choice destinations. Lyons recommends researching a meeting a minimum of two years out. “We’re having difficulty finding space in high demand destinations such as Las Vegas, but even the top twenty-five spots, like Dallas, are rebounding as well,” says Lyons.
  • WiFi Becomes a Requirement: No longer an option, WiFi is now demanded as a necessity. In face, Lyons said that Wifi was probably her biggest frustration and challenge for 2013. So much that she worked with an audiovisual specialist “to standardize the exact amount of megabits/sec needed per person based on how many devices they were likely to have and for what purposes they would use them,” she says. This way, she could bid out the right amount needed for that meeting so that no one was stuck with a frozen device. You can find out more about how to determine WiFi needs at her website, www.ezevents.net
  • Emerging Technologies: Digital signage, audience polling systems and smart phone apps all grew in popularity last year. Other changes she saw in 2013 included meetings with fewer speakers who talked at their audience and more round table discussions, and the need to reuse or maximize space.

2014 – Positive Expansions

What does 2014 hold for the meeting profession? Lyons is very positive for this year. She expects business to double, if not triple. “Companies are more optimistic, and many are projecting moderate growth. This is allowing them to free up larger budgets for meetings,” says Lyons.

“People still want peer to peer training. They want to network and learn.” She sees a trend for more collaborative type meetings with more audience participation. “Networking breakouts, and Ted-like short talks with a small number of people for a shorter period of time are becoming very popular.”

A final word of advice from Lyons for those who may be starting their careers in the meetings industry, especially those who will be working as independent planners like herself: “Have a solid business plan, have a good contract, find a niche market to work in, and have a good, targeted marketing plan,” she says.

Darlene Lyons is the founder and President of EzEvents, Inc. and has over 25 years of experience in the meeting industry. She has been responsible for the planning and execution of over 5,000 events on the North American continent. She has worked with many of the worlds’ leading speakers and entertainers, and thrives on the excitement of the event industry.

What did you take away from 2013? What do you think 2014 has in store? Comment below to join the discussion!

2014 Meeting Trends

2014 meeting trendsThe 2014 American Express Global Meetings & Events Forecast has some noteworthy prediction for meeting planning in the coming year.

The forecast surveys meeting professionals and hoteliers in North America, Europe, Asia-Pacific, and Central/South America in areas of meeting attendance, number of meetings, and meeting spending.

North America expects to see slight growth in the number of meetings, the number of attendees per meeting and the increase for regional meetings. Lead times for planning are expected to decrease. Europe expects to see a flat trend in the number of meetings, but a decrease in number attendees and overall spending. Regional meetings are expected to increase here as well.

Asia-Pacific is anticipating a down year in all areas, except regional meetings where a four percent increase is expected. Central/South America expects a flat trend in the number of meetings with a slight increase in number of attendees and regional demand and a decrease in overall spending and lead times.

Looking to 2014, meeting planners surveyed for the 2014 American Express Meetings & Events Forecast revealed a number of key trends and identified expectations across all regions:

  • Increasing Engagement through Social Media and Mobile Apps – According to research from Google’s Our Mobile Planet, since 2012, smartphone penetration has increased by 10 percentage points in most major regions and the daily use of social networking sites via those smartphones is also on the rise. In 2014, according to the 2014 American Express Meetings & Events Global Forecast, the use of social media within meetings is expected to slightly increase across all regions, as the use of mobile apps and social media is expected to transition from attendees’ personal to professional lives. Meeting planners indicated an increased interest in using mobile apps and expressed a desire to learn how to best utilize apps for their individual meetings. With the technology to develop meeting specific apps becoming ‘mainstream’, companies are in the process of choosing the appropriate tools and providers for their meeting apps. Overall, meeting planners are facing increased pressures to use social media and mobile apps before, during and after meetings as a way to communicate with and connect attendees to one another in order to maximize time spent at meetings and create opportunities for increased engagement and efficiency.
  • Budget Controls Continue Local and Regional Meeting Trend – As budget challenges likely increase, localized meeting demand was reported as a key trend by planners for 2014. Meeting planners revealed that companies are expecting to keep meetings closer to home by looking to hold more meetings within their region and/or their own facilities. Compliance, cost, and travel time are all noted as top drivers of this trend, as companies likely continue to seek alternative ways to control costs and reduce time away from the office.
  • Meeting Approvals Becoming More Challenging – The approval process for meetings is expected to become increasingly complex and more rigorous across all regions as a result of expected delayed approvals and a likely shift toward more revenue-focused, external meetings. Senior level executives must often approve meeting programs above a certain budget or attendance number threshold, further delaying the approval process.
  • Group Fares – Incorporating group fares into a strategic meetings program is another way meeting planners are looking to optimize costs in 2014. Group hotel and air rates for meetings and events are expected to experience slight increases compared to rates from 2013. As meeting organizers become more aware of the cost advantages and flexibilities associated with these fares, group rates will likely become more critical in the meeting planning process.
  • Non-Traditional Properties – Meeting planners surveyed for the 2013 American Express Meetings & Events Forecast revealed they were considering more non-traditional properties as locations for meetings such as outdoor venues, universities and aquariums. The 2014 survey results predicted similar trends with Europe and Asia leading the charge with a 2.5 percent increase in the use of alternative properties. In North America, the use of non-traditional facilities is expected to increase as a result of a stronger desire for locations that are considered ‘hip and trendy’ for more promotional events.

What would you add to this list? Comment below to share your ideas. We will be sharing the best comments in a future issue of the e-Alert newsletter!

IMEX America Kicks Off

This week several members of the CP team have headed to Las Vegas for the first ever IMEX America!  We can’t wait to hear about all of the networking and learning going on at the event.

Until our staff has time to send us some updates, the IMEX team has shared a few updates with us from the 2020 Fast Future Research session.  Director of the study, Rohit Talwar, shared the following popular trends among Gen Y and Gen Z conference attendees:

  • short keynotes and breakouts: kept to 15-20 minutes followed by breakout opportunities with the speaker
  • action-oriented formats like speed networking and meetings
  • more time spent in Q&A with presenter (prefer this to occupy majority of session)
  • shorter sessions repeated more frequently
  • one-on-one access to creators of new products and services

Are these methods appealing to you as an attendee?  As a show organizer, have you incorporated any of these practices into your meetings or do you plan to?

More on IMEX throughout the week!