A new article from tech guru Corbin Ball talks about the recent cutbacks, layoffs, fees, etc., going on in the airlines these days, and how it could affect attendance at meetings. On the plus side, he says,
- * The relationship-building and networking occurring at events is difficult to replicate online (at least with the current level of technology).
* There are efficiencies of scale at tradeshows and events – it is possible to make many contacts whose business benefits will continue to outweigh substantial travel cost and hassle for many.
* A primary revenue source for most associations is events and tradeshows. The attendee numbers may go down, but events will stay as long as the association is operating.
* There is an isolation factor – the more we work in front of computer screens and/or telecommute for small offices, the more we will desire human contact.
But as air travel gets more difficult and expensive, it could be the breaking point for many attendees. Corbin lays out some "telepresence meeting solutions" that planners perhaps ought to be paying attention to--if you're not already, that is.