"Meetings Mean Business" campaign emphasizes impact of meeting and event industry on businesses, destinations, local economies and the development of human capital
BOSTON, Jan. 14, 2014 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Leaders from across the meetings and events industry on Tuesday unveiled a new national campaign to showcase the substantial value derived from business meetings, conferences, conventions, incentive travel, trade shows and exhibitions. The campaign – under the moniker of the coalition backing the effort, "Meetings Mean Business" – will create an information and advocacy platform that highlights the industry's pivotal role in creating jobs, generating economic value and driving business success.
"The launch of this industry-wide campaign is an exciting moment as diverse voices from across our industry unite behind a powerful, singular message to communicate the benefits meetings bring to communities, businesses and the economy," said David Peckinpaugh, President of Maritz Travel and Co-Chair of Meetings Mean Business coalition.
"The broad-based coalition of meeting, event and convention professionals, destination marketers as well as the greater travel and hospitality industry reflects the importance our industry has placed on ensuring that our value is well understood by all our customers, stakeholders and policymakers," said Larry Luteran, Senior Vice President of Group Sales and Industry Relations at Hilton Worldwide and Co-Chair of the coalition.
A recent U.S. Travel Association study conducted by Oxford Economics found that companies depend on face-to-face meetings to win new customers, close new deals and develop high-performing talent. A Maritz Institute white paper finds that face-to-face meetings more effectively capture the attention of participants, inspire positive emotional climates as a way to drive collaboration and build meaningful business relationships.
To actively engage with stakeholders, the media, and key policymakers, the campaign is organized around three pillars:
- Creating Personal Connections – Personal relationships are at the core of every business decision, no matter what industry. A face-to-face meeting provides professionals with that personal interaction, which leads to deeper relationships.
- Driving Positive Business Outcomes – Meetings and events deliver profits, help win new accounts and serve as education platforms. They provide a venue for introducing new products and ideas and allow colleagues and partners to come together to innovate and achieve results.
- Building Strong Communities – Outside of the results driven by business meetings, the events and meetings industry creates hundreds of thousands of jobs, generates billions of dollars of revenue and supports communities across the country.
The campaign will also focus on how meetings and conferences are an essential business tool for departments and agencies across the entire government. They facilitate effective information sharing, employee training and development, taxpayer services, and collaboration with other agencies and private-sector partners in a way that cannot be accomplished by other means.
The launch of Meetings Mean Business coincides with a Tuesday hearing before the U.S. Senate Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs, "Examining Conference and Travel Spending Across the Federal Government." The hearing is expected to highlight the harm to key federal agency functions caused by dramatic, across-the-board cuts to travel budgets, and pursue a framework for preserving the value of meetings along with proper transparency and fiscal oversight.
Meetings Mean Business draws support from leaders across business, professional associations and destination marketing organizations (DMOs). Members include the U.S. Travel Association, American Society of Association Executives (ASAE), Caesars Entertainment, Convention Industry Council (CIC), Cruise Lines International Association (CLIA), Disney Destinations, Destination Marketing Association International (DMAI), Helms Briscoe, Hilton Worldwide, Hyatt Corporation, the International Association of Exhibitions & Events (IAEE), Maritz Travel, Marriott International, Meetings Professionals International (MPI), MGM Resorts, Professional Convention Management Association (PCMA), Society of Independent Show Organizers (SISO), Site Global, Starwood Hotels and Resorts Worldwide, and many of the major DMOs across the country, among others. A full list of the coalition can be found at www.MeetingsMeanBusiness.com.
"The unfortunate trend in the professional workplace is that we are all disappearing farther behind our electronic devices, and both empirically and intuitively, that's counterproductive in multiple respects," said U.S. Travel Association President and CEO Roger Dow. "Meetings Mean Business will change the discussion by presenting the airtight case for the irreplaceable value of face-to-face collaboration. A decline in in-person communication would measurably threaten the quality of outcomes in a number of critical spheres—government policymaking, business bottom lines, scientific innovation, not to mention workplace bonhomie and the impact on local economies. We're not going to allow that to happen."
The campaign officially kicked off Tuesday with thousands of meeting professionals at PCMA's Convening Leaders meeting in Boston.
"We're honored that our event marks the start of this important effort," said Deborah Sexton, President and CEO of PCMA. "Our members, along with the thousands of industry professionals, are engaged and excited about the campaign. Now is the time to tell our story and demonstrate the value of face-to-face meetings and events."
To learn more, visit www.MeetingsMeanBusiness.com.
About Meetings Mean Business
The Meetings Mean Business coalition was created in 2009 to showcase the incredible value that business meetings, travel and events bring to the U.S. economy. Its members span all facets of the face-to-face meeting and events industry, which have come together behind a common goal: providing the resources, tools and information to show the real impact the industry has on businesses, economies and communities. For more information, visit www.MeetingsMeanBusiness.com.
SOURCE Meetings Mean Business