American Express Meetings & Events Examines Top Meetings Trends
Research finds that seventy-five percent of meeting professionals agree there is increasing pressure to find new ways to deliver education to healthcare providers amongst other key statistics
American Express Meetings & Events today published a research and insights-based report into the top trends impacting large-scale congresses in the healthcare and pharmaceutical space, called “On The Horizon: Healthcare Congress Trends to Watch.” Using data from a global survey of congress organisers, healthcare congress planners and meeting suppliers, the report investigates top meetings trends to watch in the increasingly regulated and compliance-driven healthcare and pharma industries.
The report looks at these trends through the prism of attracting healthcare providers (HCPs), the most likely target attendees for healthcare congresses, to attend and engage. To gather data and insights, American Express Meetings & Events surveyed healthcare planners, congress organisers, and meeting suppliers from around the globe and conducted in-depth interviews with twelve industry experts.
“Healthcare and pharma congresses face a complicated challenge: to grow engagement and attendance, they must navigate highly complex regulated environments and compete for the time of healthcare providers, whose time is already in demand,” said Lisa McKenzie, Vice President Healthcare and Pharmaceutical, American Express Meetings & Events. “But it’s not insurmountable. By remaining keen observers of meeting trends, congress planners can make their event a valuable experience for healthcare providers and encourage attendance year after year.”
According to our report, the top trends to watch for healthcare congresses include:
So Many Congresses…So Little Time
Some of the factors congresses are up against include the intense time pressures imposed on HCPs by patients and practice management. On top of this competition for time, congresses are increasingly shifting funding models so that HCPs would be required to pay for themselves, which can deter attendance. To sustain and increase attendance against these factors, congress organisers will need to create clear value and measurable return for their audience.
Shake Up the Learning Environment
Three quarters of meeting professionals agree there is increasing pressure to find new ways to deliver education to healthcare providers. In the sea of medical meetings, it can be a challenge to lure attendees with fresh, compelling events. To keep attendees engaged, planners should think creatively about hands-on, interactive programming and meeting space design to shake up outdated learning environments.
Delivering for the Discerning Attendee
Event attendees everywhere are growing accustomed to high-end experiences, and healthcare providers are no exception. However, meal caps and data transfer requirements common in this highly regulated industry add complexity to the planning process. Congress organisers and sponsors that work to find creative ways to provide unique food, beverage and accommodation experiences within spending limits will make HCPs feel like VIPs.
Embrace the Future
Eighty percent of those surveyed feel that the growing number of next generation healthcare providers will drive substantial change in attendee engagement strategies. To satisfy these emerging leaders and adapt to their existing habits, planners should consider supplementing congresses with digital, on-demand learning options that extend the congress experience long after the event. Meeting planners should proactively seek this next generation of HCPs to act as congress advisors to help boost attendance and engagement.
Surgical Use of Technology
Think beyond the ubiquitous mobile app. As emerging technologies, like augmented and virtual reality, are embraced in the medical field, congress organisers should look to these innovations as a strategy for engagement. Not only is tech appealing on the exhibition floor, but can help facilitate new ways for companies to interact with HCPs when in-person meetings are not an option or after the meeting ends.
Data Before, During and After
A vast majority of those surveyed (seventy-seven percent) agree that congress organisers using data to create engaging attendee experiences will have a significant advantage over the competition. The implementation of data usage is another story. While a majority (sixty-seven percent) of those surveyed claim their organisation is using data, the highest reported use case was for registration, with many other data use cases further behind in implementation. Organisers have a lot to gain both in attendee experience and compliance, a key area for healthcare and pharma hosts, if they can better collect and use data before, during and after the event.
Personalisation has become an expectation in the meetings industry. Yet, only fourty-four percent of those surveyed indicate they use data to engage attendees with personalised content. For HCPs, organisers must balance data-driven personalisation with privacy policies often imposed on them by healthcare organisations and regulations. Most times this begins before the meeting via registration and mobile apps, to help planners deliver on what HCPs are looking to experience.
About American Express Meetings & Events
American Express Meetings & Events, a division of American Express Global Business Travel, offers longstanding experience, expertise and leading capabilities spanning program implementation to budget optimization to deliver powerful meetings and events experiences for clients. The global team is focused on meetings and events sourcing, planning, contract negotiations, budgeting, expense management, reporting and benchmarking, combined with strategic counsel and integration of leading technology. This end-to-end approach focuses on creating visibility, driving savings and enabling effective meeting experiences.
With more than 40 years in the industry and a presence in over 50 countries, American Express Meetings & Events is uniquely positioned to manage meetings and events locally, regionally, internationally and across the globe. American Express Meetings & Events works with local leaders to enhance its offering to clients.
American Express Meetings & Events was named to MeetingsNet’s 2015, 2016 and 2017 “CMI 25” list, an annual directory of the largest and most influential full-service meeting and incentive travel management companies focused on the U.S. corporate meetings and incentives industry. To learn more about the services offered by American Express Meetings & Events, visit: https://www.amexglobalbusinesstravel.com/meetings-and-events/
About American Express Global Business Travel
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