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 August 26, 2019.
Frustrated With Sketchy Event Ticketing? New Ventures Try to Help
Event organizers hoping to eliminate ticket scams and huge markups in the secondary market are increasingly turning to companies that use technology to allow fans to buy and resell their tickets while putting caps on prices. Partnering with such companies allows event organizers to take control of the resale of their tickets. Fans who can't go can return their tickets, which can be reissued to someone who wants to go, helping ensure that venues are filled with fans. "As in many other areas of our economy, technology is racing ahead to try and address some of the issues that we and others have identified — and any consumer who has tried to buy a ticket recently can probably attest to," said John Breyault of the National Consumers League. Read more.
Game Industry’s First Mental Health Event Debuts in October
The International Gaming Summit on Mental Health will take place on October 9-October 10 in Toronto, Canada, and it will be the first such event on mental health for game industry professionals. It is based on the notion that game industry professionals are just like everyone else. And in any given year, one in five people in Canada and the United States will personally experience a mental health problem or illness. But games require a mental health conference of their own because the industry presents unique environmental challenges and opportunities. The event takes place on World Mental Health Day (October 10), acknowledging that growing awareness and recognition of mental health challenges is a good thing. Read more.
Marriott Expands Successful Single-Use Plastics Initiative
Marriott International has announced that the initiative to reduce plastic waste in 20 percent of its hotels was so successful that it will now exchange single-use plastic bottles for toiletries with larger, refillable bottles, at all 7,000 properties worldwide. Arne Sorenson, Marriott president and CEO, said in a statement, “This is our second global initiative aimed at reducing single-use plastics in just over a year, which underscores how important we believe it is to continuously find ways to reduce our hotels’ environmental impact. It’s a huge priority for us.” Under the new policy, most Marriott branded hotels will make the change to refillable pump-dispensers by the end of 2020. This year, several other brands, such as InterContinental Hotels Groups’ Kimpton Hotels, introduced policies banning single-use plastics and more are expected to join the movement. Read more.
Corporate Housing Is Getting (a Little) Less Boring
As millennials make up a larger portion of business travelers, the industry has seen a rising emphasis on unique and local experiences. Travelers are increasingly using Airbnb for quick business trips, and meeting planners often go out of their way to design events inspired by the local destination. Now, this value shift is even starting to touch one of the oldest and stodgiest sectors in the space: corporate housing. For decades, companies like Oakwood have dominated the corporate relocation market, giving travelers little choice over where they spend the next 30-plus nights, and providing an experience similar to that of a stay in a hotel. Companies with more variety and flexibility have only slowly begun to make an appearance, as digital technology helps make the market more accessible. Read more.
The Importance of Sustainability at Meetings and Events
IMEX America has released its show themes for the upcoming exhibition in September 2019, which allow attendees to explore more deeply a particularly important industry trend. This year, the annual session talking points will center on four themes: imagination, experiential, CSR and sustainability, wellness, and event tech. We sat down with Gayle Murphy, CEO of Global Green Events Ltd, a sustainability consultancy that focuses on bringing the sustainable event industry together, to learn more about IMEX America sustainability theme and about Gayle's sessions, “Implementing Sustainability in Umbrella Organizations and Associations” and “Meet the Expert in Sustainability.” Check out the Q&A with Gayle to learn what this IMEX theme means for you. Read more.