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The State of Conferences and Corporate Events in 2018: Trends and Challenges

Conferences and corporate events face increased competition in 2018. In this guide, you’ll learn which challenges are most common across the competitive landscape of conferences and corporate events, taken from a survey of over 800 event professionals and interviews with industry experts.

The number of conferences and corporate events attendees can choose from is rising. This increased competition means it’s vital to understand how your event compares to others like yours.

In this guide, you’ll learn which challenges are most common across the competitive landscape of conferences and corporate events, taken from a survey of over 800 event professionals and interviews with industry experts.

Get the guide and you’ll learn:

  • Which challenges similar events in your industry will face this year
  • How events like yours plan to spend their marketing budgets and grow attendance
  • The ways technology will transform conferences and corporate events in 2018 and beyond

Preview

Trend #1: Hosting more events with fewer resources

Conferences and corporate events have come to terms with their budget constraints. When asked their greatest challenges in 2017, survey respondents ranked “insufficient budget” as their biggest challenge. This year, however, survey respondents listed budget woes as the least of their worries — it didn’t even make the top five.

Over half of survey respondents said their budget will remain the same in 2018 — a trend backed up by both PCMA Convene’s 27th Annual Meetings Survey and American Express’ Global Meetings and Events Forecast.

Despite flattening budgets, the industry shows no signs of stopping. A majority of respondents (53%) expect to host even more events this year according to our survey — compared to 60% in PCMA Convene’s survey.

Some expect to overcome their challenges and increase attendance with the same headcount, too. Nearly 60% of respondents said their team will remain the same size, while 40% look to hire more staff in 2018.

You can count companies like Google among those who’ll host more events in 2018 while growing their events team. “Events are becoming more important and relevant,” says creative producer Melinda Collins. “And by growing our in-house event team, we can tell a more authentic story across all our events — from our flagship developer conference, Google I/O, to the Women Techmakers event series.”

Google’s authentic story also extends to its consumers. Late last year, the tech giant launched pop-up donut shops around the United States to introduce people to Google Home Mini — a donut-sized smart speaker.

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