NOV 2017

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 ⎜ N O V E M B E R 2 0 1 7 w w w . c o n v e n t i o n s o u t h . c o m 6 headlines, trends & ideas A majority of event organizers plan to increase the number of events planned for 2018 and to increase the budgets for those events, according to Event Marketing 2018: Bench- marks and Trends. The report was drawn from a month-long study, conducted by Bizzabo, a developer of event management software. More than 400 mid- to senior-level event marketers from across the globe were asked about their per- spectives on where events are now and where they see the industry heading in the future. The results showed enthusiasm for and commitment to events across all levels of the organizational hierarchy, according to Bizzabo CMO and Co-Founder Alon Alroy. "Across the board we see that live events are growing as a marketing channel," Alroy stated in the report's introduction. "Not only do event marketers evince a significant degree of commit- ment to live events, but they also believe that it is the most effective marketing channel and plan on investing in it more in the future." Among the key findings of the report: n A majority of event marketers (31%) believe that events are the single-most effective mar- keting channel over digital advertising, email marketing and content marketing. n 95% of respondents agree that live events pro- vide attendees with a valuable opportunity to form in-person connections in an increasingly digital world. n The majority of event marketers plan on in- vesting more in live events in the future both in budget (63%) and number of events (63%). n Over 80% of C-suite executives think live events will play a critical role in their organiza- tion's success. "While support for events is evi- dent on all levels of organizational hierarchy, no- where is it stron- ger than with the C-Suite," the report states. "Those who are in charge of di- recting the future of their organiza- tion's marketing strategy value live events and believe that live events will become more integral to the success of their organization in the coming years. Along these lines, the majority of C-Suite executives plan on increasing the number of events that their organization produces next year." Companies that perform over their goals are more likely to be able to measure event ROI. "Overperforming organizations are more likely to increase the amount of money invested in event technology than organizations that are performing as expected or underperforming," the report explains. "Furthermore, of the respon- dents who said that they plan to increase event technology spend, over performers said that they would increase event technology spend by $4,500 more than respondents from the performing as expected or underperforming categories." The report goes on to state that "if a company is over performing, they are likely leveraging event technology to better market, measure and grow their events. Once these companies witness the success of leveraging event technology, they then tend to increase their investment in event technology to increase their return." Exactly half of the participants in the study said their primary reason for events are lead generation and/or sales and community building. Other reasons include brand awareness, customer relations, employee training and recruiting. "For most organizers," the report states, "revenue generated is the primary criteria by which event performance is judged. This could include revenue from event registrations, in addition to pipeline generated or sponsorship revenue." n Face-To-Face Events Expected To Increase In 2018

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