Lead Forensics

As Event Formats Get More Interesting, We’re Following the Trends

November 15, 2019 Kevin Edmunds


I just saw that the Professional Convention Management Association held its Asia-Pacific educational conference last week in Macau, and the 120 attendees got to experience some interesting session set-ups that kept things fresh and interesting.

In fact, the event used a single ballroom for all its sessions: the general sessions, breakouts, and even refreshments breaks. The room was divided into quadrants, so the general session stage and its theater-style seating occupied one quadrant; breakout areas with a mix of seating that included banquet chairs, ottomans, and beanbag chairs that faced flipcharts and digital screens took up two other quadrants; and the snack and beverage displays were surrounded by highboy tables in the last quadrant.

Interestingly, this type of format experimentation is becoming more common among the association events in the meetings and event industry—the ones run by PCMA, MPI, and ASAE plus stand-alone shows like IMEX America. They are serving as learning grounds for different event designs, and even if something does not work perfectly the first time they try it at their events, it still gives the attendees new ideas that they can modify and try at their own meetings.

The good news is that we here at AIC Hotel Group also attend many of these industry events and experience these new session formats firsthand. That helps us come back to our all-inclusive properties in Miami, on the eastern and western coasts of Mexico, and in the Dominican Republic with suggestions for our clients who will use our spaces for conferences and incentive programs that are critical to the success of their organizations. And we must keep going to these industry conventions and be exposed to unique session formats, because planners like you are never going to stop wanting fresh and different things that keep attendees engaged and which fulfill the goals of an event. So hopefully I’ll see you at an industry event soon—or at one of our properties, where we can help you implement new and interesting event designs.

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