How to Make Your Business More Meetings & Events Friendly
By Michelle Moore, CMP, HMCC
Director of Sales
You have a unique venue, delectable catering business, exceptional event service offering, or exciting destination attraction. Now, all you need is a client to book a meeting or event with your business. And the best way to earn meeting and event leads is by directing your marketing and sales information specifically to your target audience – meeting and event planners.
Meeting planners are responsible for coordinating all aspects of professional meetings, conventions, and special events – from booking hotel rooms and venues to securing transportation and off-site activities. With specific goals and needs in mind for each event, it’s important to carefully cater your messaging to secure their interest, and hopefully, their business.
Here are five simple ways you can better market your business for meetings and events:
Include Meetings-Specific Information on Your Website
Meeting and event planners want to know that you understand and want their business. Having a section on your website that speaks directly to meeting, event, and group options – featuring images of event set-ups, planner testimonials, and setup diagrams – is key to success. Meeting planners often visit our partner websites for additional information before requesting an event proposal from our Experience Kissimmee Meetings team. This is when your events-targeted webpage will be put to good use, as they’re still in the decision-making stage of planning.
Make Working with You Easy
It’s very common for meeting planners to work solo or with a small supporting staff when planning for a meeting, event, or function. That’s why the easier you make it to work with you, the more likely you’ll win the business. For example, make your business more attractive to planners by offering a built-in transportation option to save time and effort if you’re an off-site venue. Or, if you’re a food and beverage or AV business, build delivery and setup options into the contract. The more simplified and streamlined you can make your services and logistics, the more likely a meeting planner will select your business for their next event.
Be Flexible and Provide Alternate Dates
In the digital age of RFP’s, proposals, and bookings, it’s very easy to click “no” to a meeting venue or service option that doesn’t fit the planner’s exact business model or availability. The best way to combat this is by initiating dialogue with meeting planners to learn more about their specific goals and willingness to move their event dates for a better rate or experience. Making that personal connection and remaining flexible will show that you’re interested in being a partner through the planning process.
Make Safety & Security a Priority
Safety and security is a top concern for meeting and event planners. Providing your business emergency preparedness plans, maps of event venues, and other safety plans will help address these concerns in advance and create a working relationship of trust from the start. A planner will be more willing to work with you knowing that safety is top-of-mind.
Offer Creative Solutions
At Experience Kissimmee, our goal is to make every meeting memorable, and the best way to do this is by providing creative solutions to enhance the meeting or event experience for planners and attendees alike. Our team often suggests unique teambuilding activities to planners in order to incorporate our destination offerings and provide a memorable, one-of-a-kind experience. Whether you’re a venue, hotel, attraction, or local nonprofit, get creative and think of how your space and business can incorporate teambuilding activities for meetings and groups.