MICE event planners look to independent hotels in the UK
Cvent released the findings of its fourth annual Global Planner Sourcing Report in late July, and some of the data reveal some surprising insights. The report features the results of a survey of nearly 3,000 corporate event planners worldwide about how they source venues and what influences their decision-making.
The global meetings, incentives, conventions, and exhibitions (MICE) industry is a powerful driver of business for the hotel. With an annual global growth rate forecasted at 7.5 percent from 2017 to 2023, the MICE industry was valued at $752 billion in 2016 and is projected to reach $1.245 trillion in 2023, according to Allied Market Research. By country, the United States generated the highest revenue in the global MICE industry, but by region, Europe dominated the global market with more than 42 percent market share.
The Cvent results of the UK market are worth a closer look, but before we go into that, here are some insights from the global data that highlight, why were, are so excited about the growth potential of the MICE industry.
Larger meetings and larger budgets: More than half of the planners reported a year-on-year increase in their event budget and about 60 percent said they have more attendees at the events they are planning. 50 percent of the planners said that their average meeting size was 101 or more attendees.
Cost matters: The number one biggest influence on the decision to book a venue is the cost. A significant portion of planners said that they would be willing to switch to their second-choice venue for a cost savings of at least 1 percent.
Negotiating a deal: When asked about which stage planners experience the most difficulty, about one in four said they found it difficult to negotiate with the venue. One in five said that they found researching venues to be the most difficult.
Scope for improvement: Hotels looking to better their responses to RFPs should note that planners feel that they can most improvement in terms of thoroughness, followed by speed, trustworthiness and brevity.
The survey collected feedback from nearly 300 UK-based corporate event planners. It didn’t surprise us at all that UK planners consider having a unique atmosphere much more important to their venue selection decision than brand or chain affiliation. Planners are seeking a wider variety of venues to host their events, with 25 percent booking independent hotels compared to the 29 percent booking large chain hotels. Almost a quarter (24 percent) also said they organise events at cultural venues – typically museums or galleries.
“This year’s study reveals planners in the UK are increasingly looking for a venue that will make their event stand out and help them deliver an even more memorable and distinct experience for their attendees,” commented Chris McAndrews, vice president of marketing for the Cvent Hospitality Cloud. “Coupled with the fact that there has been an increase in the number of smaller meetings being organised, it’s understandable why independent hotels are now competing so effectively for group business.”
Unlike the global planners, UK planners report a 10 percent increase in the number of smaller meetings (1-100 attendees) since 2017. More than half organise meetings for up to 100 people. Peer recommendations are an important influencer for sourcing decisions. Almost one in three planners said peer recommendations are the highest amongst all venue sourcing influence factors.
We at Amistad Partners have a long history of promoting independent hotels as ideal venues for any type of corporate events. Whether in the UK or elsewhere in the world, our MICE experts are knowledgeable and resourceful and up to the challenge of advising you on which of the hotels in our collection are best suited for your next event.