Delegates want short, interactive meetings
Conference delegates are increasingly socially responsible,
tech savvy and time poor, according to a new market research project
commissioned by Melbourne Convention Bureau.
And attendees are looking for collaboration and networking, not just
information. These were some of the results of the survey carried out by
McCrindle Research on Melbourne CB’s behalf.
To celebrate the 25-year anniversary of Asia-Pacific
Incentives and Meetings Expo (AIME), Melbourne Convention Bureau commissioned
McCrindle Research to conduct research into the mega trends affecting the
future of meetings.
The aim of the research is to understand how the global
meetings industry is changing, through the influences of social trends, new
technology, and changing attendee expectations.
Fears that the meetings industry may experience a decline
due to the rise of online meetings were offset by the fact that participants
indicated that this only increased the value of meetings as providing a place
for human connection. Four in five respondents (86%) believe attendees will
continue to place a strong importance on face to face meetings.
As the younger generation of attendees begin to come
through, they are increasingly technologically savvy, bringing with them the
expectation for technology to be integrated throughout the event. There is also an emphasis for the future
delegate on social responsibility with 76 per cent of respondents believing
that attendees of the future will want events to be more socially responsible.
“As our younger generation starts attending more and more of
these, they will definitely want to see environmental sustainability. They will
definitely want to have involved in the format of the event, wellness programs
and networking programs, it won’t all be about learning there will be some kind
of fun as well,” said the survey.
As attendees become increasingly time poor, it is likely
they will attend less events. In saying this, when a decision has been made to
invest their time into attending an event, their expectations on return for
investment are significantly higher. Almost 89 per cent of respondents believe
that attendees in the future will expect more acquired knowledge from events.
To summarise, tomorrow’s delegates want:
- Digital connectivity.
- More socially responsible events
- More personalised events
- More knowledge and ROI.
- More participation and interaction
- More fun in a conference
- More small group presentations
- More collaboration
- More augmented reality