Meetings Today Blog

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Industry experts discuss a variety of topics specific to the meetings and events industry.


Beyond the Tradeshow - Being Relevant (Part 3)

As mentioned in my last blog post—we are going to walk through the five main stages which design the process of successful selling to planners. We'll start with Stages 1 and 2 in this discussion. Then move on to Stages 3 and 4 next month. The five stages of selling are: Research Stage. Engagement Stage. Listening Stage. Understanding Stage. Responding Stage. Stage 1 - Research I learned early in order to succeed you need to prepare and in order to prepare you need to research. For both tradeshows and hosted buyer programs pre-planning will increase productivity. Researching who will be in attendance by ...

10 Tips for Better Site Inspections

In the April print and digital editions of Meetings Today, I wrote about the "10 Areas of Site Selection to Question and Learn" and spoke more about site selection on the April 27 webinar, “Site Selection: Finding the Right Fit.” It all ties together with this Friday, May 6, blog and the Friday With Joan interviews about site inspections. This blog focuses on hotels. It is a fraction of the items on checklists I use. The same principles, and many of the questions, apply if you are looking at a convention or conference center, restaurant, museum or other venue.   1. In Person or Virtual Site ...

Beware the Polar Bear

Last week I saw a consumer product with a photo of a polar bear prominently displayed on the package. Right next to the smiling polar bear was the tag line, “The Right Choice.” Searching the rest of the packaging, I was unable to find any reason this product was the right environmental choice or more sustainable than the competition. Polar bears have quickly become the symbol for good stewardship of the Earth and can be found on cleaning products, office supplies and even the back of buses. It is greenwashing, pure and simple, unless the image is accompanied by information ...

Beyond the Tradeshow - Being Relevant (Part 2)

If you are like me, you like to think you are in tune with what is going on in the world. And we probably are, but are you in tune with how you are communicating? How the information you are sharing is being received? How you are engaging others to “buy” into what you are “selling”? OR are you just selling, sharing the info and communicating the way you always do, and engaging the way you you’ve always done it—hoping some of it will “stick” and a planner will buy? And, of course, this is all related to "knowing your ...

Soft Terrorism Targets and Events: How Do You Prepare?

For those of us who live and/or work in D.C.—I have a home office across from and next to major Federal buildings, and near a restaurant where more groups of kids and teens go than to almost any monument or museum!—terrorism is not on our minds all the time. I imagine that you who live and work in this area think, like I do, about MetroRail (our subway system) risks more than a potential terrorist attack. Reading this article in the Friday, 4.15.16 Washington Post ("Alert Level Green" by Dan Zak)—thinking about the classes I teach in a university meetings certificate course and at meetings ...

Transferable Skills and How to Use Them

Meeting planning is a remarkably broad career, one to which many who enter the profession came from elsewhere, have the responsibilities as part of other jobs (marketing and HR as examples) and is often considered a profession of generalists. If there’s something to be done, meeting planners (which I use instead of "professionals" because the latter often includes sales and marketing, catering, convention services, production, AV, etc. that are sometimes more specialized) often are tasked with "other duties as assigned" because we have so many transferable or cross-over skills. We are problem-solvers who can often think through how best to solve ...