Top Takeaways from the Strategic Meetings and Events Summit

Prevue Magazine hosted the Strategic Meetings and Events Summit in Miami, Florida. The event brought together meeting planners, suppliers, and speakers to network and discuss how to be more strategic in the planning and executing of meetings and events. We heard from experts on the topics of negotiation, program communication, crisis management and transformational travel experiences. Here are the top takeaways from the summit.

1.  Listen

Negotiation expert, Ed Brodow, gave tips on creating win-win scenarios. His main point? Develop trust by listening. He advised on following the 70/30 rule: listen 70% of the time and speak just 30%. Other advice included acknowledging the position your counterpart is in, asking questions to clarify, and showing them you care.

And when negotiations aren’t moving along, he offered the following:

  • Change the negotiator
  • Change the location (from formal to informal)
  • Take a break
  • Introduce new information
  • Confront the obstacle
  • Offer alternatives
  • Make minor concessions

2. Communicate

Pointing to the “Rule of Seven,” speaker Christy Lamagna, CMP, CMM, CTSM explained the importance of a continuous communication cycle. In Marketing, it’s said that a potential customer must see or hear your message at least seven times before they buy from you. So why do we bring people to a meeting, tell them something once, and expect things to change?

Two points rose to the top of her presentation: Ask for input and deliver “snackable” content.

Christy suggests surveying the audience prior to (and after) the meeting and asking speakers to prepare a years’ worth of digestible content to send to participants and make the change stick.

3. Plan

Less than 1/3 of events have a crisis communication plan, and the third speaker of the day, Alex Plaxen, President & Founder, Little Bird Told Media aimed to change that.  He shared that as part of an overall crisis management plan, the communication of that plan is critical to its success. One of the examples Plaxen used was the unspeakable horror that took place in Las Vegas at the Route 91 festival. The lack of communication that came from the event organizers on social media thereafter may have left attendees scrambling for information. This example hit close to home because Creative Group had a conference in Las Vegas at the time, and some participants had chosen to attend the festival. Read more about our crisis communication plan at that conference via our EventAPP®, which proved crucial for participant check-ins.

4. Transform

The day’s final speaker was Pádraic Gilligan, Chief Marketing Officer, SITE. He shared his passion for travel and its ability promote a global perspective, build tolerance and foster political peace. He also explained how incentive travel qualifier preferences were changing to encompass this “transformative” mindset.

What Qualifiers Want Now:

  • More unprogrammed time
  • More choice
  • More unique encounters
  • More authenticity
  • More wellness
  • More off-the-beaten-path destinations
  • More meaningful experiences (CSR)

The summit was filled with great food, beautiful views from the Malibu Farm restaurant, actionable talks and of course, great networking. Participants left feeling inspired to be strategic by listening, communicating, planning, and creating transformative experiences.

Ready to plan your strategic meeting or event?