MIA: events up, budgets flat, lead-times down

The amount of corporate events being held in 2007 has risen by the largest margin in eight years, according to findings in the latest Meetings Industry Association (MIA) UK Conference Market Survey. It’s not all positive news however, with the report finding that association event business has been relatively static, lead times reduced for corporate and association planners and corporate budgets showing either little change or reduced. The survey – created for the MIA by industry consultant The Right Solution and now in its sixteenth year – questions 600 senior event marketers – 300 corporates and 300 from the association/not for profit sector. The rise in corporate meetings this year amounts to a 27% increase, the biggest since 1999. This was backed an increase in the average number of corporate delegates per event, up to 180 this year against 140 last year and 99 in 2005. “This has been helped by a less unstable economic and political situation,” MIA chief executive Jane Evans said. “Coupled with increased recognition from companies of the importance of face-to-face marketing – despite digital technology making it easier to hold virtual long-distance meetings.” Compared to these statistics, the association sector fared less well. The average number of events per respondent rose just 1.4% from 14.1 annually to 14.3, while average number of delegates fell to 96 this year from 123 in 2006.

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