Here are our top sourced meeting trends for CVBs to watch in 2020, along with some key insights on how to address them as a destination marketer.
Again this year, there’s a huge rise in demand for meetings and events. CWT Meetings & Travel predicts a 5-10% growth in demand. At the same time, the development pipeline is slowing.
This could mean a boost in hotel group rates. Respondents to the AMEX Meetings & Events Forecast predict it’ll grow about 2.41% in North America.
This year’s mantra is “book now!” The longer you wait, the more you’ll pay, according to Social Tables.
- This will make it harder to find room blocks for the groups that want to come into your destination, especially for lower-rated groups.
- Ask your planners who are booking for 2020 and 2021, if they want to start planning for future years, and get those dates/rates on the books now.
- Source business smartly so you are filling in and focusing on groups from the growth market segments you are trying to develop.
- Spend time and effort focusing on the group types that will be most profitable in the long run for your destination.
Based on new research from the Experience Institute, a whopping 71% of people consider the destination in the decision to attend a meeting. Beyond that, 20-30% say it’s the deciding factor.
These attendees blend the worlds of business and leisure. It’s given rise to a new, multi-generational segment that drives destination decisions, according to Social Tables.
- While your meetings marketing must clearly communicate your meeting package, don’t forget it is the experience that will differentiate you. Especially for groups where the attendees pay their own way.
- Keep your meetings marketing fresh with things that showcase the uniqueness of your destination. What makes you different? How can you blend your meetings message with your leisure offerings?
- How are you making it easy for planners? Do you showcase the group experiences and pre/post-meeting ideas? Does your meeting’s website make this easy to find and navigate? If not, now’s the time to start developing this content.
- Pair your FAM tours and site visits with key events and activities in your destination to wow the planners with your experiential offerings.
Eighty-five percent of meeting planners say their role requires more “experience creation” compared to five years ago, according to the IACC Meeting Room of the Future survey. And when asked how incoming generations are affecting meeting formats, 80% said there is more emphasis on the overall experience.
- Make sure you develop opportunities to connect planners with non-traditional partners in your community to develop the experiential offerings. For wellness, that may mean developing a list of yoga instructors or meditation experts that are available to work with groups.
- Ensure your meeting’s website isn’t all business. Are you telling your destination’s experiential story and creating digestible content for planners to see what the options are?
- Use video to help you showcase this experience, and remember that meetings videos shouldn’t include families and couples. Show the experiences groups can enjoy in a group setting.
- Meeting planners don’t want to see sizzle reels. Develop more video storytelling.
Want to take your Meetings Marketing to the next level, contact us to learn more about our Meetings Marketing and Sales Services for DMOs.
with 10 years of DMO experience as an Interim President & CEO, Deputy Director and Vice President of Marketing for various DMO’s, Mya uses her expertise to shape marketing strategies & solutions for the agency’s roster of clients. Oh and by the way, she likes to share those meetings marketing strategies while presenting at industry conferences. Look her up!