November 10, 2020

Day 1 of Cvent CONNECT Europe Virtual was a day like no other. With over 7,000 registrants joining us online, it was a day for the record books, one of the largest gatherings of meeting and event professionals in European history. If you missed any of the action, you can watch it free and on demand in the Cvent Virtual Attendee Hub 

Our “new normal” virtual conference kicked off with a keynote by our CEO & Founder, Reggie Aggarwal. Reggie spoke about the power and resilience of the meetings and events industry, his views on our road to recovery, and how we can shape the future of events.  

Virtual and hybrid events are not necessarily new, but today, they are more critical than ever, and represent the new frontier for meetings and events. As we navigate the days ahead, Reggie reiterated that our industry was truly forged by fire, and that while challenges lie ahead, the future of events is bright and exhilarating.  

Cvent CONNECT Europe Virtual 2020 Day 1: Session Recaps

Cvent Event Marketing & Management Solutions Roadmap 

For Event and Marketing Professionals 

Reggie’s opening remarks were followed by the Roadmap Sessions. The Product Management Team covered exciting new developments to help manage virtual and hybrid events, as well as numerous innovations across our core platform to help planners better execute and enhance the impact of meetings and events.  

Cvent Supplier & Venue Solutions Roadmap 

For Hospitality Professionals 

Cvent’s Graham Pope, Head of European Hospitality Cloud Sales, & Jim Abramson, VP of Product Management explored proprietary MICE market data & analysis alongside Cvent product innovations to help suppliers with their recovery.  

Find out how to navigate the uncertain market environment, build confidence among event organisers and travel managers, and use digital technologies to enhance marketing, sales and operations. 

What Will Strategic Meetings Management Look Like in the ‘New Normal’? 

For Event and Marketing Professionals 

Never has the concept of ‘strategic meetings management’ been so important to an organisation. In future, it will be unthinkable that anyone will attend a meeting or event of any size, without the explicit knowledge of the company they are travelling on behalf of.  

Duty of care, the health, safety and well-being of all employees is now as important – if not more so – than return on investment, cost savings and revenue generation in the list of key objectives for a meetings programme 

This session featured CEO of Proske, René Proske and Global Enterprise Account Manager for Cvent, Jean Squires as they discussed what the changing landscape means in terms of strategic meetings management and what factors – including sustainability and GDPR – need to be revisited and reviewed to ensure your SMM strategy moving forward remains robust and fit for purpose. 

What's Next for Virtual Event Planning? 

For Event and Marketing Professionals 

For most organisations, your current event programme is almost unrecognisable. According to PCMA, 79% of event organisers are taking their events virtual, and as we look to the future, that trend seems here to stay.  

While the fundamentals of in-person and virtual events are the same, there are differences. This session explored the key components of a virtual event – from business objectives, to engaging content, to the different technology needs.  

Safer Meetings: How Event Organisers & Venues Make Them Happen 

For Hospitality and Event Professionals 

Ensuring delegate safety has taken on a new meaning and become an urgent topic of conversation for both event organisers and hospitality professionals. The event organiser’s checklist has changed as well; from sourcing a safety-compliant venue, to contactless check-in, badging and lead capture onsite.  

Area Director of Sales and Marketing for InterContinental Berlin, Maria Hoffmeister, Cvent Manager, Oscar Carty and Regional Sales Manager for Cvent, Olivia Murray-Taylor discuss how venues can reassure event organisers, deliver safer meetings, and how today's vital technologies will aide collaboration in delivering a successful delegate experience.

Leading in Challenging Times: An Interview with IHG CEO Keith Barr 

For Hospitality and Event Professionals 

IHG CEO Keith Barr sat down for a conversation with Mark Jeffries to share his thoughts on the state of the hospitality industry, the challenges facing MICE and transient business, and how he's leading IHG toward recovery. 


Improving Lead Performance and Conversion: The Event Opportunity 

For Event and Marketing Professionals 

Designed for operationally and revenue minded Marketers, this session explored how to programmatically capture event activity, create actionable engagement scores, and integrate these insights for better marketing funnel performance. 

In-person, virtual and hybrid events generate thousands of valuable touchpoints, providing powerful insight into delegate interests and preferences. Every appointment held, booth visited, session attended or survey completed paints a clearer picture of customers and prospects. 

Systematically capturing this event activity data, and combining it with existing customer and prospect profiles, allows you to build smarter follow up plans, accelerating leads through the funnel faster.  

In-Person and Online: How to Plan for and Manage Your Hybrid Events 

For Event and Marketing Professionals 

Due to the realities of continued health and safety concerns, travel restrictions, and corporate travel budgets, most event professionals agree that hybrid events will play a critical role in 2021 event programs.  

So how do you actually create a singular event with two distinct experiences - both virtual and in-person? This session looked at how to design an event that brings these two experiences together through content, community, and technology. 

The Top 3 Issues Facing Corporate Planners Over the Next Three Years 

For Event and Marketing Professionals 

ICE, the In-House Corporate Events community, in collaboration with Cvent, will launch their annual Benchmarking Research on 11th November.  

During this session Anita Howard, Founder and Director of ICE Awards and ICE, presented the top 3 findings of the research which includes: Running virtual events and best practices, sustainability and implementation, and the use of metrics when running events

What Venues Need to Know to Host Successful Hybrid Events 

For Hospitality Professionals 

What is a hybrid event, why would an event organiser merge in-person and virtual, and why must venues take notice? A new Cvent survey reveals what event organisers across Europe expect from venues when planning and managing a hybrid event.  

Hoteliers share their perspective on how to accommodate changing needs to win hybrid MICE business. This session explored how suppliers can prepare themselves for hybrid, while giving their property an edge on the competition.

Travel 2021: The CEO Outlook 

For Hospitality and Event Professionals 

The COVID-19 pandemic has made 2020 an exceedingly challenging year for the travel industry, with the struggles for meetings and events and the hospitality sector especially well documented. We expect better days in Europe and the Middle East in 2021, but uncertainty remains.  

In this session, moderator Mark Jeffries interviewed a panel of industry leaders to find out what they have learned during the pandemic, how they have adapted their strategies, and what conditions they believe are necessary for recovery in 2021.

Missed any sessions? 

No problem! You can log into the Virtual Attendee Hub at any time and watch on demand! If you haven’t yet registered, now’s your chance!  

Catch up now

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