Thursday Buzz: The Incredible Shrinking Event Venue

Not every event needs to be a massive endeavor. Here's what to keep in mind when you're not aiming for the convention center. Also: comparing public and private communities.

When you think of “meetings,” you probably have an image in your mind of a big event.

But is that image misplaced? According to eVenues, it might be. The company cites a 2012 study from Active Events that found that half of all meetings in five of its major markets were small-scale affairs of less than 50 people—and these smaller-scale events are on the rise.

This could make spaces not traditionally known for holding meetings more competitive, eVenues suggests.

“There has been a shift away from choosing resorts in favor of downtown hotels,” the company writes. “Destinations that offer more direct flights or more travel options are winning out over their competitors. Significantly, venues that are capable of offering smaller meeting spaces are finding themselves on level footing with large convention halls, competing for events that had not traditionally been available to them.”

While the company’s blog post is geared toward the venues themselves, it nonetheless offers things that event planners should be looking for from a nontraditional venue—including fast wireless access, videoconferencing equipment, and on-call support staffers.

What sort of successes have you had with small-scale events?

Private vs. Public

You may already know what makes a private community better than a public one, but if you’re trying to sell the benefits to your boss or board, this comprehensive guide from Socious might come in handy. The company’s Joshua Paul breaks down the myriad of differences between an open network on LinkedIn or Facebook and a community that you privately own.

“While there are similarities in the interface and nature of connecting with others online, the differences in strategies, functionality, and how they are used by your target audience are vast,” he writes.

Paul breaks things down step by step, noting issues such as ownership, precise control, and the pitfalls you might run into when launching a community. All in all, it’s a resource you might want to keep around when you’re trying to sell a new approach up the chain. (ht @dsinople)

Other good reads

Google’s I/O conference was full of interesting stuff on Wednesday, particularly this wrinkle: Google Docs now supports native editing and saving of Microsoft Office files, Mashable reports.

Setting expectations is important, which is why author Robbie Abed suggests you should send two emails to your boss each week: One at the beginning of the week setting out your plans for what you’ll get done, and one at the end of the week letting your boss know what you completed. The result is that you’ll be able to keep your job manageable.

If you’re looking for a way to manage your BYOD devices, a recent study from Forrester could help you figure it all out.


Ernie Smith

By Ernie Smith

Ernie Smith is a former senior editor for Associations Now. MORE

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