The meeting and conference industry is massive. In fact, more than $330 billion is spent on conventions and conferences in the U.S. every year.
In such a large industry, it's important to stand out from the crowd. That's why we've put together this guide outlining the top meeting and conference trends 2019 has seen and what event and meeting planners should keep an eye out for in 2020.
Keep reading to learn more about the trends that changed the way attendees meet at meetings and conferences.
Conventions Take a Note from Festivals
In popular consumer culture, festivals are all the rage. Music festivals like Coachella are bigger than ever, with 23% of Americans attending one in 2018.
The meeting industry is taking note, creating more immersive experiences for attendees. In many cases, people aren't just coming for keynote and breakout sessions.
Many conferences are offering entertainment, leisure activities, and in-depth innovative workshops.
Think about how you can make your convention more worthwhile by creating a festival-like environment.
Think about Augmented Reality
Augmented reality is here and here to stay. And it's making its way into the conference world.
Here are a few ways AR can enhance your convention. You could use it to identify your attendees with facial recognition. This will provide a better experience, shortening wait times in registration lines.
You could also use it to help people navigate the convention center and to get directions. Another idea? Utilize virtual reality to help people interact with your new products that haven't been released yet.
Looking to rent virtual reality equipment? We've got what you need.
An Increased Focus on Mindfulness
Now for one of the biggest meeting and conference trends 2019 has seen: a bigger focus on mindfulness.
Mental health is becoming a bigger and bigger topic throughout the U.S., and it's having an effect on the event industry as well.
More and more, people want to find balance in their lives. They want to work hard, but they also want to maintain a healthy mind. They want to push themselves, but also want to practice self-care.
It's a good idea to incorporate this concept into your events.
Here are a few of the biggest trends we're seeing when it comes to mindfulness:
Quiet rooms where attendees can go to get some peace and quiet
Longer breaks that allow attendees to take a mental break
Increased opportunities to get outside
Healthier snack options
Better furniture to sit on during sessions
There are countless possibilities here. You could create a wellness zone with a variety of mental health activities. You could offer free brain-boosting snacks or complimentary massages.
Whatever you do, just make sure you offer some type of mindful activity for your attendees.
2019 Meeting and Conference Trends: Final Thoughts
Now that you've read about these meeting and conference trends 2019 has offered, what's next? Think about how you can implement some of these ideas in your 2020 conference plans.
Looking for reliable technology rentals for your next meeting or conference? Contact us now. We have distribution centers in Chicago, Washington DC, New York and Los Angeles so we can supply your event with the right technology and audiovisual gear when and where you need it!