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Meetings Industry Rebounding Strongly

Results from Meetings Focus’ 2011 Meetings Market Trends Survey demonstrate increases in key areas

SAN FRANCISCO, Calif. – March 2, 2011 - The North American meetings industry is solidly in rebound mode after nearly two years of lean times, according to results from the 2011 Meetings Market Trends Survey, published by Meetings Focus, based here.
“This year’s survey, among the most comprehensive in the industry, demonstrated that meeting planners expect to hold more meetings in 2011, work with higher budgets and enjoy higher attendance,” said Tyler Davidson, chief content director of Meetings Focus. “On the flip side, they also expect prices to increase.”

Key findings include the following:
  • When asked what would be their biggest challenge when planning meetings in the coming year, 14 percent less responded "lower budget" this year when compared to last year's survey. This was led by corporate planners, of which 19.3 percent less this year said budget woes would be their biggest challenge.
  • Planners who indicated that the number of meetings they will hold will decrease shrank by 12.5 percent overall, and those who replied that they expect the number of meetings to increase raised 9.3 percent overall. Association planners-who tend to hold the largest meetings-led the pack, with 11.1 percent more expecting their number of meetings to increase more than 10 percent next year.
  • Those who said "decreasing attendance" would be their biggest challenge fell 9.5 percent this year, led by association planners, of which 12.6 percent less noted attendance decline was their chief concern.
  • 16.7 percent more planners overall listed price increases as their biggest concern in this year's survey when compared to the previous survey, led by corporate planners (18.5 percent more) and association planners (17 percent more).
The results of the survey, which was completed by nearly 700 respondents, were combined with interviews of participants; a separate survey on career trends accompanied by an analysis by Meetings Focus Career Forum columnist Sheryl Sookman; an outlook story from Issa Jouaneh, vice president of Maxvantage and American Express Meetings & Events; and a page of additional resources.
The results of the 2011 Meetings Market Trends survey are available online at or via the digital edition of the print publication, also available on
The digital version of the publication also includes video interviews with major meetings industry association heads: Deborah Sexton, president and CEO of PCMA; Bruce MacMillan, president and CEO of MPI; and John Graham, president and CEO of ASAE. Sookman also provides two video clips analyzing the job market.

About Meetings Focus
Meetings Focus is a San Francisco-based division of Stamats Communications Inc., based in Cedar Rapids, Iowa. Meetings Focus publishes content geared toward the meetings industry, including print publications Meetings Focus East, Meetings Focus MidAmerica, Meetings Focus South and Meetings Focus West, as well as e-media content channels such as, various e-newsletters and educational webinars, and live events, among other products. Meetings Focus also operates an online virtual community, Meetings Focus Forum (, addressing meetings industry subjects.

Tyler Davidson
Chief Content Director
Meetings Media
(415) 782-2250


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Also See: Meetings Media Rebrands to Meetings Focus / December 2010

Meetings Industry Leaders Launch Virtual Community; Meetings Focus Forum moderated by meetings industry thought-leader Joan Eisenstodt / September 2010

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