The Convention Industry Council (CIC), an organization representing the meetings and event profession, welcomed the leadership of 33 member organizations and industry partners for their Nov. 3-4 Council and Board Meeting where they shared industry insights with short education sessions. Following the popularized Ted Talks format, speakers from Brand USA, Social Tables, Smith Travel Research and ASAE, among others, spoke to CIC members on industry issues and trends.
“CIC’s role is to be the place where collectively, the latest breakthroughs and challenges from every facet of the industry are brought to the forefront and discussed,” said Karen Kotowski, CEO, CIC. “Convening with thought leaders from outside CIC’s membership helps drive important conversations regarding the meetings industry, its issues and the coordination of efforts to ensure quality meeting experiences to all those invested.”
The two-day meeting facilitated endless conversation on the meetings industry, including:
- Carroll Rheem, vice president of research and analytics, Brand USA, shared plans for the Great Outdoors – a brand campaign focused around U.S. outdoor landmarks that are easily accessible to major cities where meetings are held.
- Jan Freitag, senior vice president, Smith Travel Research, shared hotel industry data and trends that point to continuing increases in rates and occupancy as fewer buildings with meeting space are being built, and current occupancy rates at 66 percent (2 out of 3 nights sold out) in the upscale market and 75 percent in the luxury market (3 out of 4 nights sold out).
- Social Tables shared insights on the growth of technology for the meetings industry through the use of mobile apps, hybrid meetings and automation.
- Susan Robertson, executive vice president, ASAE Foundation, shared ASAE’s events accessibility policies so that all individuals needs are met whether its visual, mobile, hearing, food sensitivity, nursing mothers or religious practices.
- Exiting Board Chair Bob Gilbert, president and CEO, Hospitality Sales & Marketing Association International (HSMAI) talked about pursuing a global presence and how to plan and grow on a global scale.
- Vicki Hawarden, president and CEO, International Association of Venue Managers (IAVM) talked about the importance of diversifying membership and the introduction of a new group rate model that has seen instantaneous success at her organization.
To learn more about the Convention Industry Council, their membership and other meetings industry issues, visit www.conventionindustry.org.