The IACC professional organization ensures planners and attendees reach their greatest successes by establishing a set of quality standards for small to medium-sized events. In partnership with CBRE, IACC released its 2016 Conference Venue Trends that examined the health and wealth of small meeting and event venues across the industry. Mark Cooper, IACC’s CEO, noted, “As the meetings industry continues its recovery for the fourth year, IACC is seeing increased investment in new-build, meetings-focused venues, as well as capital investment in existing venues looking to be at the forefront of meetings innovation.”
In the study, researchers found that Corporate Conference Venues experienced a rise from $137.40 to $143.61 in ADR. Corporate venues saw a 6% increase in total revenue per occupied room, while resort conference venues’ decreased by 3.4%. The largest expected budget increase for 2016 is resort conference venues, which plan for an average growth of 5.4%.
Cooper elaborated more on what to expect, “Corporate conference venues delivered the strongest results, which suggests a return to investing in training and meetings for large organizations operating their own conference venue for internal meetings.” He continued, “We see this as an encouraging trend that will benefit the wider industry, suggesting greater business confidence and future growth with commercial venues.”
As for planners, the study found that an average of 86.5% of business came directly from the end client, instead of third-party agencies. Repeat customers were still the top source of business in 2015, while personal sales calls produced the most qualified leads. Digital marketing success is also on the rise, producing the most day venue leads in 2015. Full-service hotels were found to be the most competitive to residential venues. And lastly, executive conference venues predicted a 2.4% increase in CMP rates for 2016, while other venues reported increases of up to 1.8%.
In a recent study by the Content Marketing Institute, they found that “In-person events, which has been rated the most effective tactic for the last six years, increased from 69% to 75%.” Meeting and event professionals have a lot of advancements to look forward to in 2016, with improvements in everything from construction, experience-based marketing, and overall revenue.