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Eventful News: Better Transportation, New Tech, & Tips for Success

It’s a fact: Great event planning takes resources. And in that light, planners who are able to embrace new tools and techniques position themselves to succeed. This week, many of our stories focus on these types of tools and tips — whether it’s new technology, collaborative techniques, or best practices for taking care of your health. 

Use this week’s 5 biggest stories to give yourself the edge.

1. Major Events Are Going the Extra Mile to Give Free Rides (BizBash)

TLDR 

What’s your event doing to provide transportation? In this story, BizBash covers three major events getting creative with getting attendees where they need to go. Some might even say they’re going the extra mile.

  • The Rogers Cup tennis tournament in Toronto partnered with the city’s transit commission to offer ticket holders free subway rides home from the venue.
  • Dreamforce offers free shuttles, but they also encourage attendees to walk whenever possible. They’ve even created an easy-to-use chart with the distances between venues,  helping attendees gauge “walkability.”
  • Governor’s Ball Music Festival in New York City provides ferry rides to Randall’s Island for attendees who want to skip the walk across the Triborough Bridge.

<Blockquote>“We hope the initiative will have a lasting, long-term effect. In the short term, though, it provides a new option for our guests and helps the tournament reach new demographics that were otherwise unable to attend.” -Karl Hale, Director of the Rogers Cup

What does it mean for planners?

Transportation can’t be taken for granted — even in 2019. While it’s an element that goes largely unnoticed if it goes right, the backlash is strong when it goes wrong. (Fyre Festival, anyone?) And while services such as rideshare apps have improved transportation, it still can’t be an afterthought. Investing time, energy, and creativity is still as crucial today as it was before the smartphone. 

What’s next?

As attendees push for more unorthodox venues, with it will inevitably come more remote or unique destinations. The question is: Will new solutions such as driverless cars keep up with attendee expectations to help planners take more events off the beaten path?

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2. Cvent Rolls Out Plans for Exciting New Innovations in the Year Ahead (Skift)

TLDR

The top software provider to the events industry has made a number of huge acquisitions over the past few years. Now, with new pieces in its pocket, it looks to assemble them into the larger picture of an already robust platform. At Cvent Connect in Las Vegas earlier this month, the company announced its plan to bring together the best of its planner-facing parts (QuickMobile, CrowdCompass, DoubleDutch) together over the next 18-24 months.

It also announced the rollout of Social Tables interactive floorplans to the Cvent Supplier Network, allowing planners and venues to communicate more visually via 3D renderings.

Over time we’re going to pool the best components of our various mobile solutions, whether its Quick Mobile, DoubleDutch, or CrowdCompass. We’ll pull that into a unified Cvent mobile solution that can take all those best features, combine them together, and give the optionality and flexibility customers are looking for in their different types of events.” -David Quattrone, Chief Technology Officer, Cvent

What does it mean for planners?

Studies have shown that event technology can increase attendance by 20% and productivity by 27%, all the while decreasing costs as much as 30%. As the industry’s most robust software offering for planners becomes even more so, it promises to bring the technical innovation necessary to keep up with the escalating demands of attendees — especially as event budgets continue to stay relatively flat.

What’s next?

As we move into the future, a more interactive approach to event technology solutions will bring connections between events and attendees closer — just as it will for the collaborative process between planners and venues. The upcoming rollout of Cvent’s newest development plans could bring such connectivity to fruition by simplifying the event process at virtually every touchpoint. It will also bring more targeted solutions to the table for different types of events.

Further Learning: The Future of Instant Event Communication (Webinar)

3. IMEX Announces Key Talking Point for 2019 Iteration (TSNN)

TLDR

IMEX America, arguably the most important trade show in the events industry, will host its ninth iteration this September. As with each previous iteration, the show will feature an annual talking point that thematically unifies the content and concepts presented over the weekend. In 2017, the theme was “purposeful meetings” followed by “legacy” a year later. This year, the main talking point will be “imagination” — a celebration of and call for creativity within meeting design. 

We’re working to bring the power of imagination to everything we’re doing at IMEX America. Absolutely everything – and everyone – is connected or capable of becoming connected and the driving force behind all the positive changes we’re witnessing is the power of the human imagination – a uniquely human quality.” -Carina Bauer, CEO of the IMEX Group

What does it mean for planners?

Each year, the theme chosen for IMEX becomes a rallying cry for the industry at large. In many ways, it’s a pulse read for the future of meeting design, not only identifying but also furthering the evolution of events. The concept of imagination is ultimately a nod to the need for new levels of creativity and interactivity. Simultaneously, it’s a shout out to the many planners who are already pushing the boundaries of what’s possible.

What’s next?


As the theme for this year’s IMEX event ripples through the industry for the next year, those ripples are sure to result in new and never-before-seen innovations in the event experience. Who knows what we’ll see? What we do know is that 2020 is shaping up to be the most exciting year for the industry yet! 

Further Reading: 5 Meeting Industry Trends That Are Changing the Face of Events

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4. How to Improve Your Sales Skills, Even if You’re Not a Salesperson (Harvard Business Review)

TLDR

While event planners aren’t salespeople, sales still plays into the picture when it comes to interacting with clients. You have to sell your brand, your vision, and the need for additional budget or resources — just to name a few. Harvard Business Review lays out some impactful sales tips that can help planners make the case in a more convincing way.

I sometimes came in with too many ideas of where we might be helpful, and it overwhelmed the listener. I have learned that sales takes discipline and that I need to pick and choose what to talk about once I understand the customer’s problem.” -David Neenan, President of International, TransUnion

What does it mean for planners?

  • Do your research – Figure out your client’s chief motivations and make a plan that prioritizes them.
  • Role-play your pitch – Practice with a colleague you trust and ask for feedback.
  • Ask permission – Don’t just assume! Use questions like “are you ready for the next step” to gauge buy-in and move at the right pace.
  • Stay relaxed – Relax your facial expressions and keep your body loose for more effective non-verbal communication.
  • Don’t talk too much – Focus on how you can help your counterpart and avoid bragging.
  • Don’t beat yourself up – It’s not the end if you’re unsuccessful — keep the relationship open and look for the next opportunity.

What’s next?

When practicing with a colleague, give them these tips and ask them to pay attention to how well you follow them. Sometimes, we get stuck in our own perspectives and can’t pick up on the things that someone else can. Based on their feedback, fine-tune the approach and try again. And most importantly, make sure to practice before the real deal! 

Further Reading: 45 Event Planning Questions for Clients

5. 5 Pain Prevention & Recovery Tips for Meeting Planners (Meetings Today)

TLDR

We don’t have to tell you that being a meeting planner means long hours and lots of time on your feet. After a while, it can take its toll, both mentally and physically. Unfortunately, there’s not always time go to yoga or exercise when you’re in the heat of planning a huge event, or during the event itself. This article from Meetings Today offers up five simple steps that can keep your feet from aching on those long days.

Long days on your feet often come with the job in the meeting industry, leading to pain and discomfort in the heels, arches and toes. But the good news is, you can protect your peds with a little planning.” -Kate Cripe, Content Developer, Meetings Today

What does it mean for planners?

  • Stretch before & after the event – Do dynamic stretches like lunges to warm up and loosen joints or muscles.
  • Drink plenty of water – It might seem simple, but on busy days it can be an afterthought that leads to soreness. Men should drink ~125 oz/day while women should drink ~91 oz/day.
  • Pay attention to minerals – A lack of potassium, calcium, & magnesium can all contribute to leg cramps.
  • Wear the right shoes – Consider custom orthotics, and change shoes every day of the event, working from highest heel to lowest heel. 
  • Invest in a roller – A foam roller is cheap and effective for calves while frozen rollers like water bottles can offer much-needed relief for feet.

What’s next? 

Doing these things now can prevent bigger issues such as back pain from arising in the future. Being proactive about your wellness is essential: It’s a lot easier to prevent something than to fix it after the fact. So make sure to go back through this list every time you pack for a big event. 

Further Reading: 7 Stress-Busting Tips to Prevent Event Management Burnout

Published July 25, 2019

Need more news? Check out last week’s event scoop.

Come back to our blog next Thursday for another roundup of the most important event news of the week!

If you’ve ever said, “Woohoo it’s Friday! – Oh wait, I work in events.” You need this newsletter.

Hand-picked news, tips, and, trends, direct to your inbox. →