OCT 2018

ConventionSouth magazine is the leading resource for meeting planners who book all types of events, conventions, conferences and group travel in the south.

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⎜ ConventionSouth ⎜ O C T O B E R 2 0 1 8 w w w . c o n v e n t i o n s o u t h . c o m 10 Meetings Climate For 2019: Optimism Follows Strong Performance in 2018 By Marcia Bradford ANNUAL STATE OF THE INDUSTRY REPORT ith 2018 winding to a close and plans for meetings and events in 2019 well underway, meeting profes- sionals are feeling quite optimistic about the coming year, according to the results of ConventionSouth's 2018 Meeting Trends Survey. Nearly half of the respondents (45 percent) indicated that they expect to see an increase in the number of meetings they plan during 2019, with 38 percent anticipating a slight increase and 7 percent looking forward to significant increases. These results were improved over the 2017 survey, when 27 percent expected slight increases and 5 percent anticipated great increases in the number of meetings planned. At the same time, 14 percent of this year's respondents said they expect a decrease in the number of meetings they plan as opposed to only 3 percent who expected a decrease in 2017. Many of this year's survey respondents (41 percent) said they expect their meetings activity to stay about the same as compared to 65 percent of 2017 survey respondents who said they did not expect much change. The projections for 2019 likely reflect the respondents' experiences in 2018, with 35 percent reporting that they planned slightly more meetings in 2018 than they had in 2017, and 10 percent saying the number of meetings they planned increased greatly from 2017 to 2018. Another 10 percent saw a decrease in meetings planned and 45 percent said the number of meetings planned in 2018 stayed about the same as in 2017. As in previous years, the 2018 survey respondents included association, corporate, independent, and government and non-profit planners. A large majority of respondents (86 percent) have been planning meetings and events for more than 10 years, including 37 percent who have been in this profession for more than 20 years and 27 percent who have planned meetings for more than 30 years. To put these numbers into volume perspective, 46 percent of the planners responding to this year's survey said they planned between 11 and 20 meetings in 2018 and another 50 percent planned fewer than 10 meetings this year. W

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