Posted by: conferencebay | August 16, 2008

An Evolving Global Industry

The conference industry is said to be one that is maturing rapidly yet ironically, is quite an “immature industry”. Why is this so? Relatively speaking, it is a very young industry — barely 50 years of history as an established one in Europe and North America, and even younger in most of the rest of the world. To a great extent, its so called immaturity as industry  is due  to an apparent lack of reliable statistics and regular research to provide a base of intelligence and information on trends and on the size of the value the conference industry.

Through the decades, it is also quite apparent that governments have not taken the conference industry seriously as a major benefactor of national economies precisely because it has been impossible to demonstrate clearly the economic impact that conferences can have. This is quite unfair considering the benefits of the industry in energizing local economies throughout the world:

Exciting destinations!

Great profitability

Conferences cater to the “high quality high cost “and therefore, “high yield ” end of the market. A 2001 study of conference visitors to the UK show how conference visitors from overseas spend an average of three times more than any other visitor for all categories in the country. The greater spending power of business tourists means increased economic benefit for the host destination and a greater return on its investments in infrastructure and marketing.

All year round activity

Conferences place throughout the year with peaks in spring and autumn. Many smaller conferences and meetings are also held during winter months. The all year round nature of conferences also leads to the creation of permanent jobs, as opposed to the seasonal temporary jobs oferred in other tourism or leisure industries.

New opportunities for collaboration!

Future inward investments

One of the ways a conference adds value to a locale is by giving delegates a pleasant, positive experience of the destination. this means showing them the most attractive scenic parts of the destination. When this has been undertaken, so many delegates do return as leisure visitors, bringing their partners and families for a holiday or short break. A business visitor who leaves with good impression of the conference destination becomes some sort of an ambassador for that place, these are often influential people whose opinions of the destination will be instrumental in a destination’s image building.

Green tourism

Little negative impact to the environment than mass leisure travels for instance. Conferences are concerned with smaller numbers at much “higher spend”. Conference delegates travel together as a group making it possible to educate them about the community and increasing the likelihood of their revisit or considering to stay an extra day in other spots of same destination.

Given all these, we at Conference Bay are happy to do our part towards making the conference industry a more energized, dynamic industry. To start with, we want you to come away with opportunities as it relates to this vibrant industry, whether you are a delegate, a conference organizer, speaker or sponsor. We are working and running our beat to keep you attuned to recent trends in this important global industry and the conditions in which they are taking shape. We shall provide statistics and valuable information such as sweeping changes that have occurred in the last so many years.

How is the conference industry evolving in today’s information era? What are the trends of increasing demand at events around the world? How is the conference industry growing alongside tourism industry? How is technology shaping the future of the conference industry?  All these and more as we assess various aspects of the conference industry and how it will drive into the future.


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