Meetings & Conventions: Newsline
THE ECONOMY IS KEY
CONCERN, BUT MEETING PLANNERS SEE RELIEF IN SIGHT
One Year Later, Optimism Sets In
Roughly a year has passed since Sept.
11, 2001. Security concerns and the long-suffering economy still
dominate the news each day. Yet, planners are surprisingly upbeat
about the future of the meetings market, according to an exclusive
survey conducted by M&C
A large majority of planners 70 percent described the
meetings market today as “positive” overall in an online poll
conducted Aug. 16-19; a total of 1,258 M&C readers
In retrospect, 92 percent said they would have called the market
positive just before Sept. 11, 2001. When recalling the weeks just
following that tragic day, only 14 percent said they would have
considered the industry healthy at the time.
Looking ahead, 87 percent of those polled expect the meetings
market will be on an upswing six months from now. And nearly all
(91 percent) believe the industry will be healthy a year from now.
Only 4 percent foresee a negative outlook in 12 months.
While readers are generally optimistic about the future, they
don’t expect much short-term change, according to M&C’s Meeting
Planner Confidence Index (see chart, above).
Interestingly, when asked which external factors most influence
the meeting planning market, the domestic economy and corporate
budget cutbacks were perceived as having a greater effect than
concerns about traveler security. Corporate downsizing and profits
ranked above terrorism as key factors affecting the industry.
• Art Pfenning
Art Pfenning is the corporate research director for
NORTHSTAR Travel Media, LLC, M&C’s parent company.
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