Welcome to another edition of Aventri's Connect Weekly column, where we share the top five news stories from the week that today's meeting and events planners should know. We aim to cover everything from the worlds of events, technology, business, marketing, social media, travel, hospitality and beyond. Check out the top stories from the week of March 16, 2020.
Events Planners Postpone to 4th Quarter, Go Virtual in the Meantime
The meetings and events industry took another hit this week as economic giants U.S., UK, and Canada joined other nations in enacting stricter restrictions on travel and recommending social distancing and limitations on the size of gatherings. Large, live gatherings in the near future are as impracticable as they are irresponsible. The industry is looking past an increasingly risky summer at a possible recovery from the economic spiral in the fourth quarter of 2020, and event professionals must brace for impact as they head toward what, in the best case scenario, will be an extremely busy season. Read more.
Global Meetings Industry Day Postponed
Last year’s Global Meetings Industry Day celebrated the industry with more than 275 registered events in 50 countries, but circumstances this year have led Meetings Mean Business to postpone it. No new date has been announced for the day of advocacy, but a statement explained that “new meeting restrictions, travel bans, and social distancing protocols make it impossible to move forward at this time. We are living in a world of great uncertainty and while we look forward to the moment when everyone who wants to participate in GMID can do so safely and confidently, we are not there yet.” Read more.
Recommended Resources: Don't cancel your event, go virtual with Aventri! Learn more in our press release.
Cancellation Insurance Fallout: The Cost of Doing the Right Thing With Your Event
As the coronavirus rapidly spreads around the world — the total number of confirmed cases as of March 17th is close to 200,000 with the outbreak in the U.S. only beginning — event organizers are experiencing immediate and severe financial impacts from the pandemic. So many major events have been affected that the New York Times is keeping a running list of those that have been cancelled or postponed. When it comes to event insurance claims and liability as a result of cancellations, planners are being faced with a lose-lose situation: cancelling an event preemptively out of fear of the virus generally will not be covered by insurance, but waiting too long could lead to additional losses where you have an obligation to your insurance claim to mitigate them. Read more.
Where to Donate Unused Event Materials After Cancellations
As events around the world are canceled during the COVID-19 outbreak, what can planners do with all those customized tote bags, T-shirts, and water bottles that will go unused? The nonprofit Good360 is offering what it calls a socially responsible option, enabling the donation of certain event materials at risk of ending up in landfills. “Good360,” CEO Matt Connelly told Convene via email, “has a 37-year history of helping companies and organizations make responsible decisions regarding the donation of goods, which become available for donation from a wide variety of situations. Good360, he added, has a membership base of more than 90,000 vetted nonprofits that “support people in need and those nonprofits serve every imaginable cause — disaster, homelessness, poverty, military, breast cancer, foster children, education, women’s shelters, substance abuse recovery, health/wellness and many more. Read more.
Major Meetings-Software Platform Adds Virtual-Event Capabilities
Aventri, a widely used event-management software platform, has entered into partnerships with three virtual-event companies. The aim is to help planners move upcoming events to a virtual platform in light of the global COVID-19 outbreak, or add a virtual component to in-person meetings in the future. The three companies—Digitell, Evia, and Intrado Digital Media—each offer an approach that’s geared towards specific use cases in the meetings and events industry. Digitell specializes in assisting organizations with their real-time and on-demand online educational content. Evia offers digital event and media distribution services, while Intrado specializes in enterprise collaboration through video meetings and virtual team spaces. Read more.