Updated Business Events Compass Reveals a Big Bounce

Hope for a better 2021 surged among business event planners and event participants in the latest installment of the Business Events Compass, although challenges remain.

Author: Michelle Russell       


Updated data in the Business Events Compass reflects the uneven challenges the business events industry faces.

In the weeks leading up to the most recently updated version of PCMA’s Business Events Compass, a number of vaccines effective in stopping the spread of COVID-19 were widely approved, and mass vaccination programs began around the globe.

That moved the needle sharply upward, in terms of the positive expectations that both business event planners and event participants hold for in-person events in 2021, according to the updated executive summary of the report, Business Events Compass 3.0: Insights and Strategies on the Road to Recovery, released this week and available for CL registrants at the Convening Leaders Compass page. The full report will be available for purchase in the final week of January.

Nearly 30 percent of event participants now expect to see an increase in their face-to-face business event participation in 2021 compared to 2019, a number that has nearly tripled since October. That sunnier outlook is matched by the increase in the number of event participants — more than half, compared to only 16 percent in October — who say they would like to attend a regional or global event in 2021, with or without herd immunity against COVID-19. At the same time, digital events are looked on more favorably by event participants as well — 30 percent report that they “prefer digital events” compared with 18 percent in October.

Updated data in the report also reflects the uneven challenges the industry faces, across sectors, roles, and regions in recovering revenue to pre-pandemic levels. In general, event suppliers expect revenue declines that are nearly double those of business-event planners.

More information about the full, updated report, go to PCMA’s Business Events Compass page.

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