Three Meeting and Event Trends for 2021

Three Meeting and Event Trends for 2021

The landscape for the corporate meeting and event industry has been entirely disrupted by the pandemic of 2020. As we begin to unravel from it all, our hope is in what is to come.

The good news is that the demand for corporate meetings remains strong. We are social creatures, and business meetings must happen to help us align on goals and with each other. The shift organizations made to online meetings, and virtual events showed us that business, events, and meetings needed to continue to move forward, regardless of the global pandemic landscape. Networking, product research and development, collaboration, and team communication must, and will, continue.

The question isn’t whether or not group events will happen; it is how they will look and how to make them successful. As we all look forward, prepare for the future and glide into the new normal, here are three trends we expect to see strengthened.

Venues are Getting Ready for Hybrid Events

Virtual events have been the primary way organizations have held meetings of every type. As businesses that have been limited or sheltered are once again opening doors, we expect hybrid events to take over.

The boom in virtual meetings has created new best practices in the industry, improving production logistics and technology for the better. We expect hybrid events to dominate with user familiarity, and venues must get ready to meet their needs.

CVBs and DMCs are Expanding

Convention and Visitor Bureaus, along with Destination Management Companies, are expanding their partnerships and adjusting their income models. Going from a steady income of event hosting, then coming to a complete halt in some cases, due to the pandemic, CVBs and DMCs are looking at how they price and who they need to have in their portfolio of connections.

Broadening networks and outreach to be more diverse helps balance out income sources, and partnering with additional vendors will allow for more agility should something like a global disruption happen again.

Focus on Health and Safety

Hybrid events will continue to attract participants most comfortably – live or digital. Meeting technologies, along with health and safety will continue to be a focus and priority for attendees, venues, and event planners. Local government mandates will continue to shift, and those in the meetings industry will need to be flexible to meet those changes. Procedures to maintain safety will continue to be front and center with signage, technology, PPE, and more. Onsite testing is likely to be a live event standard. Find more resources here: Meeting Health & Safety

How Corporate Event Planners are Transitioning into Hybrid Meetings

How Corporate Event Planners are Transitioning into Hybrid Meetings

Restrictions on travel and in-person meetings are lifting, but uncertainty still exists for the event industry. For much of 2020, and even in 2021, corporate meeting planners had to quickly pivot to virtual meeting platforms, if not cancel long-planned events. Hybrid meetings will likely bring large gatherings back into the public space and may become the new normal for the corporate meetings industry.

Thankfully, this last year has helped shorten the learning curve, improve the technology, and built a foundation for best practices in the virtual and hybrid meeting arena. Virtual and hybrid events will continue to be elevated in their capabilities and acceptance.

Finding Solutions

Event planners will need to rely on their never-ending resourcefulness and creativity, just as always, just in the new meeting normal. This means that understanding live, virtual and hybrid events is more critical than ever. Understanding the benefits of each event type to best match client needs is vital. From there, using the right tools becomes the foundation of the event.

In live events, this could look like having the right team and venue. In virtual and hybrid events, it is critical to have an effective digital platform. For example, Zoom, one of many AMI partners, offers meetings for under 1,000 participants and webinars for up to 50,000. They also integrate with marketing softwares like Hubspot, payment portals like PayPal, and even transcription services.

Being Creative and Engaging

Don’t shy away from virtual tradeshows, keynotes, live entertainment, or town-hall-style panels. Technology and production teams are dedicated to hosting nearly anything virtually or through combined live and virtual hybrid presentations.

Regardless of the type of event, creativity and a focus on participant engagement help the event be successful. Understanding the target audience, using good pacing and/or layout, an engaging master of ceremonies, event swag, and opportunities to connect are all part of this engagement piece.

(Read this interview with AMI Partner Jason Alpert on why and how to hire a master of ceremonies for virtual events.)

Promoting Wider

One benefit of virtual and hybrid events is the ability to market and promote them outside a specific location while not requiring participant (or speaker) travel. Utilize QR codes to drive those engaging with tangible marketing materials online for information and registration.

Seamlessly connect registration and attendance for security and valuable data gathering, such as surveys, polls, and feedback forms.

Event planners, if you need support in building your hybrid production skills and teams to better prepare for virtual and hybrid events, AMI can help. Contact us today for more information.

How to Navigate the “New Normal” for Meeting and Event Planning

How to Navigate the “New Normal” for Meeting and Event Planning

Hear from AMI CEO, Andy McNeill, as American Meetings, Inc. helps clients navigate the “new normal” for meeting and event planning.  AMI is here to provide the right tools and resources to make both virtual and live events safe and successful.

When pivoting to virtual or hybrid meeting plans, AMI is here with the right platforms and technologies to perfect your team’s webcast and meeting experience. AMI clients can rest assured that their virtual, hybrid, and live meetings and events will complement the brand and assure complete meeting success for you and your company.


The Onsite Meeting Sanitation, Safety, and Resource Guide

This guide is set up to offer pre-meeting, in-person meeting, and post-meeting checklists to simplify and address each stage for better planning.


PPE For Meetings: Personal Protection Express

AMI’s Personal Protection Meeting Express catalog includes a curated menu of provisions for high-quality PPE products at turnkey and economical prices. The following products can ship independently, or with other meeting supplies directly to AMI customer meetings or event venues.


Pre-Meeting Checklist: Onsite Meeting Sanitation, Safety & Resources

Pre-Meeting Checklist: Onsite Meeting Sanitation, Safety & Resources

A pre-meeting checklist is always a good idea, but in our post-pandemic corporate meeting and event world – health and safety are more important than ever. In this video, you’ll learn the 10-best practices that support the health and safety of your corporate meeting participants as AMI provides you with key insights for checking all those measures. In addition to tactical opportunities for you to instill meeting safety, AMI will manage your events across cleaner and wider spaces, along with enhanced sanitation in all meeting venues.

Learn What Type of Webcast is Best For Your Meeting Type

Learn What Type of Webcast is Best For Your Meeting Type

How Can Various Types of Virtual Meetings Support Your Business?

Discover what type of webcast is best for your meeting type and the key differences between Virtual Collaboration Webinars, Dedicated Virtual Webcasts, and Virtual Conferences and Tradeshows. The experts at American Meetings, Inc. are ready to walk you through these key platforms to present the best solution for you to deliver the best in virtual meeting experiences and guaranteed meeting success.