FT and BT explain their event strategies at Summer Eventia

Media group focuses on specialised content, while BT looks to virtual world

Financial Times Global Events revealed its secret to attracting delegates during the recession at the Summer Eventia conference in Brighton today.

During a panel discussion at the conference, FT Global Events head of operations - Institutional Finance Clare Tunstead said the company was attracting the same number of delegates to its events as before the recession.

The media company has been tailoring its events to the needs of its delegates and focusing on shorter events with specialised content rather than multi-day conferences covering a wide range of topics, said Tunstead.

"We haven't suffered in terms of delegate numbers - there's still the need to get out there and speak to people and their clients," she said.

At the same panel discussion, BT head of events centre of excellence Julie Witte said the telecoms firm was combining virtual technology with face-to-face meetings in its events programme.

There was a trend to hold regionalised meetings linked virtually rather than one big, international face-to-face conference.

"We are doing fantastic events on a responsible budget by doing things like using venues - such as the staff restaurant - that we wouldn't have used before the recession," said Witte.

"We have to think of creative ways of doing low-cost events with high impact."

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