The past three years have brought about significant challenges to meetings industry. Although recovery is in sight, it must continually adapt and innovate to keep up with the latest trends.
The latest Skift Meetings report explores seven key meetings industry trends. These are the trends shaping how we plan, design, and execute business events in 2023 and beyond.
1. Planners Embrace Transformational Experience-First Events to Win Over Reluctant Travelers
Today’s event attendees need a compelling reason to leave the house and get on a plane to meet in person. They are demanding to return home inspired and connected. The future, starting in 2023, is all about welcoming environments where attendees drive their own experiences.
2. The Weaponization of Travel
Groups have been vocal about not gathering in destinations where laws that contradict their beliefs are in effect. Gun control, the ability to “say gay,” and, most recently, a woman’s right to choose are particularly contentious issues. This practice is known as the weaponization of travel, and meeting professionals
are in the crosshairs.
3. Authentic Destinations Take Center Stage
Business events can offer attendees an experience that they are excited to share on their social media channels. The Covid pandemic, combined distributed workforces, has made events focus on why they exist. Authentic destinations offer the types of experiences today’s attendees crave.
4. Planners Become Designers of Time
While technological advances give us the flexibility to work from home, they also mean we are never far away from work. Today, planners look to create engaging meeting experiences and focus on making the best use of everyone’s time. They seek to thoughtfully and intentionally design a more relaxing and exciting meeting experience.
5. Inclusivity is the New Diversity
Diversity means being invited to the party, while inclusion means being asked to dance. Having a diverse workforce or team is no longer enough. Instead, organizations need to develop inclusive environments that embrace the differences in people and allow those differences to shine and positively impact the work of the team or organization.
6. Easing the Travel Experience for Attendees
Employers may be eager for workers to travel for business, but individuals may be less enthusiastic. Rearranging schedules, concerns about potential health risks, and airline delays and cancellations are all lessening the appeal of business travel. Planners are working to ease these issues and creating backup plans for many contingencies.
7. Data-Driven Event Personalization
By gathering and analyzing attendee data, planners can customize event experiences to suit individual tastes and interests. The process can be automated, making it extra attractive to planners. When data-driven technology offers pertinent customized recommendations to attendees, it enables a more engaging experience.
Explore each trend in detail in the full report.
Download the FREE report now to see what the future holds for the meetings industry in 2023.