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Venue business growth
3 Min Read

AEO Conference 2019 – Of Live Events And Future-Driven Venues

This year’s conference of the Association of Event Organisers was held at the De Vere Beaumont Estate in Windsor, England, gathering the entire event community in the conference, congress and exhibition organization field. The theme of the conference was “Live – Survive or Thrive?” and offered a rich program around industry trends and challenges.

One of the main topics, presented by Jochen Witt Consulting, was about venues’ future success.

What qualifies a venue for future success?

Venue success depends on a variety of aspects including:

  • the popularity of the destination or city
  • infrastructure, including access to transport and signage
  • service and amenities that venues can provide
  • quantity and quality of exhibitions and conferences
  • safety

Improved communication

One of the key takeaways from Jochen Witt's session was that venues and organizers need to be more aligned in the future – before, during and after the event. This can be achieved by improving communication between both parties and finding ways to efficiently share information in a standardized manner. The better the venue and the organizer are aligned, the better the customer perceives the service quality.

This can be heavily supported by digital innovation. One means could be the creation of an online communication portal serving as a single source of truth for both parties in order to eliminate the constant back and forth of e-mails or phone calls between planners and venues. Digitally available, information can be kept up to date and complete at any time. With Ungerboeck’s Event Planner Portal, this streamlined communication and collaboration can be achieved.

Building brand ambassadors

Not only does the relationship with the organizer play a vital role in a venue’s future-driven strategy, but worth considering are the different relations to other service providers and influencers within the destination – for example local restaurant and pub owners or taxi drivers that may interact with potential customers of the event venue and organizers. Venues should make sure these partners are aware of events taking place within the region as this will have an impact on the word-of-mouth promotion and ultimately the event’s success.

Live and learn

Another highlight of the AEO conference was Simon Kimble’s session (Executive Chairman of Clarion Events), on “Live and Learn!”. Many event professionals found it highly instructive to not only discuss the so-called happy endings of events, but also the risks and pitfalls prior to achieving this success. He stressed the impact of networking and the importance of building relationships within the industry. Not only does this help achieve business goals, but it also strengthens a company’s credibility and ability to deliver the best possible experience towards their clients.

Three key takeaways from his session:

  • The importance of building deep and long-lasting relationships
  • Knowledge on the industry, not just exhibitors, but also potential partners and influencers
  • Doing the right thing for the right audience

Venue future success

Even in times of digitization, venues should not forget the human factor within their business strategy, particularly as we look at communication, partnerships and impactful conversations with people who have an influence on a venue’s reputation and may even serve as strategic business partners in the future.