Everybody get together now...
This year, the show was conceived to create an industry community where all the participants stayed in the same hotel and attended the same activities such as Discovery Day where participants experienced downtown Music City and the legendary Honky Tonks, and all lunches, dinners and drinks. Inspired by music, the Welcome Luncheon engaged all participants in a creative team-building songwriting process where each table was asked to write a phrase about meetings and selected phrases were transformed into the ibtm america theme song.
One-to-one mutually matched business appointments
Some 5,000 business appointments were done and 18.5 hours of networking opportunities were made available over the 2.5 intensive days. Some two-third of exhibitors returned from their success at last year´s event. The Hosted Buyer program included 86% domestic USA and 14% international including Brazil, Canada, China, Germany, India, Mexico, Netherlands, Peru, Russia, Spain, Sweden, UAE and UK.
Spain is in!
Spain maybe far from the US but our presence were felt with the participation of Turespaña, Costa Del Sol Convention Bureau, Valencia Region Tourist Board, EPG Turismo y Deporte de Andalucía, Feria Valencia, Técnica Incentives y Wedgewood DMC Group. Turespaña even hosted a Tapas and wine break during the show where participants enjoyed chorizos, manchego cheese, serrano jam and a selection of Spanish wines. "We are here to meet US buyers so that when they have meeting to plan in Europe, Spain will come to mind," explained Carola Seseña, Consul in Charge of Tourism Affairs in Turespaña, Chicago.
Digital Security and Meeting Design
The ibtm america Knowledge Forum covered thought provoking topics such as "Digital Security" by Jim Spellos, Media Expert and President of Meeting U who focused on the most important trends and helped attendees to better understand the digital risks and how to keep their personal digital presence from being compromised. Greg Bogue, Vice President of Experience Design of Maritz Travel Company, led the session "Experience: the new status symbol - use science to design with confidence" and explored how attendees can use key neuroscience principles that drive human behavior to design and create meaningful and memorable guest experiences and applied design principles to create more engaging experiences for meetings.
The show also featured a new TECHCollective which featured live demonstrations from a select number of start-ups.
ibtm amercia will be held at the Hilton Diplomat Resort & Spa in Fort Lauderdale will be the home of the event next year from June 14th to 16th 2017. www.ibtmamerica.com