Recent research from Meeting Professionals International and other organizations has given the meetings industry plenty of data to be optimistic about, showing an increase in meetings and proving the ROI of face-to-face meetings, even incentive travel.

Now, MPI is stepping in with its “Meetings Deliver” program to help members of the meetings industry disseminate all this good news about the value of meetings and the industry’s steady rebound. Meetings Deliver is essentially a ready-to-go public relations campaign, complete with an executive summary, white paper, PowerPoint template, even its own user guide, all of which can be accessed here.

It provides all research and ammunition that members of the meetings industry—buyers or suppliers—need to launch a campaign to prove the value of meetings directed toward their companies, their communities, their professional associations, and the press.

“We all know that optimism helps drive how people react,” said Roger Rickard, partner and chief business solicitor for REvent, Sacramento, Calif., in a June 2 webinar introducing Meetings Deliver. “We need to use the positive research coming out now to articulate to senior management the importance of business travel and meetings. We have shown how resilient and resourceful the meetings industry can be and what a good job we have done documenting the value of face-to-face meetings.”

MPI is an important part of that “we,” kicking off 2010 with a Futurewatch survey of members that found that 2.8 percent expect to hold more meetings this year and 4.5 percent expect more participants. Corporate meetings were the big winner in that survey: 3.6 percent of corporate MPI member respondents said they expect to increase the number of meetings they hold in 2010 and 11.6 percent said they expect those meetings to have more participants.

What’s unique about the Meetings Deliver program is that it doesn’t just promote MPI’s research; in the webinar, Rickard cited research by the U.S. Travel Association, National Business Travel Association, Oxford University, British Airways, Forbes, and other sources, which can also be found on the Web site. Meetings Deliver is a project of the MPI Foundation and AIBTM, a new international tradeshow for the meetings and events industry that will take place in Baltimore in June 2011.

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Futurewatch 2010 Results

USTA's Meetings Mean Business Campaign