The following data showcase the significance of events industry in the global economy:
a) In the U.S., the events industry contributes more to GDP than even movie production (source: A survey conducted by Meeting Professionals International).
b) As per data published by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, it is expected that the events industry will generate employment at the rate of 11% from 2016 to 2026.
c) It is expected that the global event management market will worth 8.5 billion USD by 2023 at a CAGR of 10% (source: Event Management Market Demand, Size, Growth Research Report by 2023).
Hence, it is hard to believe the reports like 2019: Global Meetings and Events Forecast, that predicts that the events industry will hit badly by tightened budgets!
Apart from curtailed budgets, there are many other challenges that will impact the events industry in 2019 and the years to come.
Which challenges will impact the events industry the most?
Let’s find out.
5 Biggest Challenges to Impact the Events Industry in the Coming Years
1: Shrinking budgets: According to 2019: Global Meetings and Events Forecast, survey respondents have said that despite a huge increase in events activities, there is a modest increase in budgets. The survey respondents also said that they apprehend that shrinking budgets for events will continue to remain a huge concern for events planners and marketers worldwide in 2019 and beyond.
Given the fact that airfares, booking costs of venues, prices of food and beverages, costs of entertainment activities etc. will rise steadily, shrinking budgets will hit the events industry quite hard.
2: Data privacy concerns: Meeting owners are concerned with figuring out the legal bases of contacting people on mailing lists. Thanks to newly introduced compliance laws like GDPR, event organizers are putting a greater emphasis on compliance and privacy concerns.
Consent and legal interests set the guidelines for interaction with different interest groups like events attendees, exhibitors, sponsors, and delegates- especially in the context of B2B events.
The reach of GDPR extends beyond Europe. Hence, more companies are organizing meetings programs to address growing compliance concerns.
However, many respondents have agreed that designated oversight of GDPR compliance will be one of the toughest challenges for organizations.
3: Long hours: Survey respondents said that in 2019, most events, except for internal meetings, will be longer (Global Meetings and Events Forecast). Respondents also said that in 2019, they expect more attendees at events.
It is expected that the number of attendees will rise by 0.1 to 2.4% whereas the lengths of meetings will increase by 0.1 to 1.9%, globally.
Events like product launches, tradeshows, senior leadership meetings, advisory meetings, incentives, and special events will be of longer durations.
Long events hours mean events organizers have to put more focus on engaging content, greater attendee experiences, and better networking opportunities. Otherwise, events outputs will be greatly affected and exhibitors and sponsors will be unable to reap the benefits of longer event hours.
4: Experience, undelivered: Events planners know how to handle details, set priorities and make the best decisions to offer excellent attendee experiences. What if event professionals get 10% more fundings than what they get at present? Survey respondents said that they will use it to“improve the onsite experience” (source: 2019: Global Meetings and Events Forecast).
In spite of global economic growth, the events industry is apprehensive of shrinking budgets allotted for events (read the 1st point above). Low events budgets will also affect attendee experiences.
Events planners apprehend that shrinking budgets will force them to make trade-offs between requirements and budget constraints.
Not only shrinking budgets but also shifting organizational culture is a challenge for the events industry. Millennial attendees are not satisfied with the typical venue ambiance (source: 2019: Global Meetings and Events Forecast).
Hoteliers and banquet hall owners are also feeling the pressure. If they don’t adapt to the changing demands of young attendees, their services will be no longer relevant.
5: Technological challenges: Like the last couple of years, technology will play a vital role in specific aspects of events planning and execution. According to Milton Rivera, the VP, Business Development and Strategy, American Express Meetings and Events, “In the last 18 months, there has been an explosion of technology emerge for every part of the end-to-end meetings and events process.” Hence, it can be an overwhelming task for events professionals to keep a tab on the vast pool of possibilities, explore it properly and partner with the best events tech solutions makers and providers of events tech services.
It is evident that to actualize growth predictions made by experts, events industry should overcome challenges.
In the next blog, we will be explaining how to overcome 5 challenges that we have discussed above.
Stay tuned for the next blog and do share with us your queries and your views in the comments’ section below.