CN spoke to venues, destinations, agencies, technology companies, organisers and industry associations for their views on the year that was and the year that will be.
Here’s what the industry associations had to say.
Michael Hirst OBE, chair, BVEP
Are you satisfied that the BVEP has done enough to give the industry a voice in 2018?
BVEP partners are eager for even more collaboration in 2018 including more joint working and greater cohesion over issues that impact the sector. Of particular importance will be the industry’s response to the expected Industrial Sector deal. Events will play a major role in increasing productivity, extending seasonality and dispersing demand throughout Britain. The BVEP continues to feed into the work of the Events Industry Board which continues to look to improve competitiveness.
What is the biggest challenge for the industry in 2018?
Firstly, maintaining the momentum and continuing to make the case that the events sector will be an essential part of Britain’s post Brexit push. Secondly, continuing to convince Britain’s businesses that events are the best way of increasing their sales and brand awareness and becoming more effective at selling Britain as a destination of choice for business and association events.
Rose Padmore, co-chair, ABPCO
Did you spot any changes in trends in 2017 that have made you rethink your strategy for the year ahead?
In our 30th year, 2017 was always going to be a time to reflect and consider the next thirty years, which is why we reviewed our values to ensure they were fit for purpose and reflected our members’ needs. Other changes that have caused pause for thought are GDPR and the Eventwell campaign. While data and mental health are far apart in terms of their subject matter, they are on everyone’s lips.
Louise Goalen, chair, HBAA
Which area of the wider events industry would you like to see improve?
The majority of agencies in this industry contribute significantly in many ways to the creation, organisation, production and running of thousands of successful events each year. We would like to see much greater appreciation of the depth and breadth of agencies’ work and contribution to the industry and will be introducing our own efforts to develop this understanding.
Mark Cooper, CEO, IACC
With Brexit looming, what progress must be made early in 2018 to give the industry clarity?
IACC’s UK members are preparing for the changes that will affect the availability of staff and building their leadership teams. Developing their staff now is a priority and I know many members are investing in education and training. IACC has rolled out an international mentor programme for members and IACC’s global staff exchange programme remains a valuable benefit.
London City Selection
Did you hit your targets in 2017, and how has this shaped your 2018 targets?
London City Selection members report that they have exceeded their 2017 targets, some by a year-on-year revenue of 20%.
LCS monitor targets through campaigns and events, such as the annual FAM weekend. The 2017 FAM event generated healthy ROI in confirmed booking, which were up almost 200% from the previous year (2015/16).