Trends include social media and non-traditional properties
Meeting planners reveal a number of key trends and expectations across all regions looking ahead to 2014, in the latest American Express Meetings & Events Forecast.
Number-one trend is increasing engagement through social media and mobile apps. Since 2012, smartphone penetration has increased by 10 percentage points in most of the world’s major regions and the daily use of social networking sites via these smartphones is also on the rise.
In 2014, the use of social media within meetings is expected to increase slightly in all regions, as the use of mobile apps and social media is expected to transition from attendees’ personal to professional lives. Meeting planners indicate increased interest in using mobile apps and want to learn how to best use apps for their own individual meetings.
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 maximise time spent at meetings and create opportunities for increased engagement and efficiency.
Other meeting trends include budget challenges keeping meetings closer to home; meeting approvals becoming more complex due to delayed approvals; group fares incorporated into strategic programs as a way of optimising costs; and a trend towards more non-traditional properties as locations for meetings, such as outdoor venues, universities and aquariums.
[pictured: meeting room, Crowne Plaza London – The City; courtesy IHG]