10 predictions for the future of the events industry

Posted on 21st August 2015 by Rob Chamberlain

We recently launched our research which measured the value of face to face communication amongst a sample of more than 750 event organisers, trainers, delegates, graduate and undergraduate students – the future of the industry. Here are ten things we are predicting for the meetings industry.

Smaller face to face meetings will become more popular

A huge 96.6% told us that they preferred smaller face to face meetings of under 10 people when it came to day to day work and business success. These types of meetings are already popular across the industry but expect to see more in future with the results clearly favouring a less is more approach.

Industry speakers will continue to play a strong role

When it comes to face to face learning we expect to see a much stronger emphasis on key speakers and influencers in future. 83.4% of participants informed us that they learn best from industry experts and gurus first hand rather than networking with their peers from other businesses for example. Listening to speakers who inspire new ideas is clearly still important to industry professionals.

Apps and social media will continue to dominate meeting technology

When we asked participants what kind of technology helped enhance their experience and understanding of learning, the results were clear. Mobile apps and social media both came out on top emphasising the growing influence of digital media in the industry. Interestingly holograms and virtual reality were pretty far down the list – perhaps the industry isn’t quite ready for some technology!

Interaction, interaction, interaction

In future we are fully expecting interaction to be second nature when it comes to meetings and events. The research was clear that an interactive format is preferred with exercise and questions involving the delegates a good way of seeing results. The day of just one man talking at you towards the front of the room is done...

Continued investment in technology

As technology improves and evolves, so will venues as they keep up with the pace of the modern meetings and events industry.  85% of organisers believe that it is important that the venues they book have the very latest technology available. That will undoubtedly mean continued investment from venues.

Websites aren’t going anywhere

How did you find a venue for your latest event? The odds are that you found it using a website and you wouldn’t be alone because 83.6% of our participants see websites as the best way to find and research venues with word-of-mouth not too far behind.

More and more networking

We’ve all been at an industry event recently and the norm is to mingle and meet new people. Networking remains key within the industry when it comes to communication and it doesn’t look like that’s going to change anytime soon. Networking remains on top when considering the most valuable elements of face to face learning at an external venue.

Venues will become more comfortable and open

Sitting in a dark meeting room watching a PowerPoint presentation is absolutely not the way to communicate in a meeting and our results support that. 45% of respondents used the words light, bright and natural daylight when describing an ideal meetings environment. Don’t lock away your delegates!

Tutorials will become commonplace

Is your next event aimed at sharing best practice or educating delegates? Try a tutorial session. When it comes to learning more effectively, tutorials came out on top above lectures and short term projects. More than 80% of respondents believe tutorials are a great way to learn and we expect to see plenty more of them in future.

No matter the technology, face to face will dominate

Meetings can take place over the phone, through Skype and even emails but face to face remains the most popular form of communication. Whether it’s networking, group interaction or just a small gathering round a table – face to face communication remains the most popular way of meeting and doing business, especially if delegates have never met before.

The research was carried out in conjunction with The Right Solution. You can read the full ‘Future of Face to Face Communications’ research by heading to http://go.welcometoimago.com/meet-the-future.