The 23rd Asia-Pacific Incentives and Meetings Expo (AIME) officially kicked off today at the Melbourne Convention and Exhibition Centre, unveiling its new direction and branding, which includes taking the two day annual event to a year-round community interaction.
In line with its strategy to transform the AIME experience and its engagement with the business events industry, the focus will be on enhancing and extending opportunities for inspiration, education and business.
The move comes in response to the exhibition industry’s fast changing model, with AIME redefining and executing its business strategy across its three key areas of networking, business and education, by delivering a higher calibre of expertise, knowledge and exchange of ideas to its community of exhibitors, buyers and visitors.
Melbourne Convention Bureau chief executive officer Karen Bolinger said that while the value of face to face networking remains significant, technological developments and new media has changed the way we conduct business interactions.
“The changes to AIME have been done firmly with our customers in mind and it is about our brand remaining relevant and implementing new ways to continually increase the value to our exhibitors, buyers and visitors, making it easier for people to come together to inspire, connect and do business, which has now shifted to a hybrid of face to face and digital touch-points to connect and converse,” Ms Bolinger said.
Supported by the tag line “Where inspiration begins”, AIME’s new branding features its community as an industry led collaboration, while its new logo has been designed to tie in with both traditional and digital media more effectively.
With the vision to support and bring the business events community together, the new AIME experience has already been implemented through a number of changes to this year’s two day event.
One such example is the Community Hub, a new feature in the centre of the show floor created to encourage interaction and engagement amongst the AIME community through roundtable coaching sessions and a networking area.
“The entire show floor has also been redesigned for ease of access and an enhanced attendee experience, while specific sections including geographic regions, hotels, venues, and products and services have been allocated to different ‘zones’, making it easier for attendees to find the suppliers they wish to connect with,” AIME and CIBTM exhibition director Jacqui Timmins said.
Ms Timmins stressed the importance of understanding what attendees’ needs are prior to, during and after the event to the new initiatives and in determining how the AIME experience will continue to evolve.
“AIME 2015 marks the beginning of a new strategic direction that will ensure we continue to lead the industry and provide added value to the business events community and its business growth.”