Knowland Survey: 76% of Planners Now Rebooking Meetings

ARLINGTON, VA— Knowland, a leader in meeting and events analytics, and ConferenceDirect, a full-service in-person, virtual and hybrid meeting solution company, have revealed the results of the 2020 Planner Survey: The State of the Meeting Industry, designed to help industry professionals understand the planner and event manager perspective on recovery.

The inability to meet, collaborate and ideate as a group has substantially impacted businesses during this disruption. Getting back to the business of business is at the heart of the meeting and events industry. With the reality of a vaccine in distribution and new norms in place, the future of the meeting does include the return to in-person meetings in 2021. Meetings may not look the same, but the value of face-to-face connections will not be overlooked.

Highlights from the survey include:

  • 76% of meeting planner respondents are now rebooking meetings
  • Following local safety guidelines and communication of safety protocols were ranked as highest reasons planners could be encouraged to book a facility (78.9% and 75.8%, respectively)
  • 60% cited flexible, low-risk hotel contracts as an extremely important requirement for in-person meetings, second only to a vaccine (65.3%)
  • 45% of planners expect meeting size (attendees) will return to pre-COVID levels in 2023

“The survey confirmed what we are seeing in Knowland’s data,” said Kristi White, VP of product management, Knowland. “Small, local meetings are happening today with almost 60% being corporate events, due in part to the fact that hotels and venues are enabling organizations to come together confidently and safely.”

Larry Hanson, CMO, ConferenceDirect, said, “Meeting planners have redefined what is possible with events through the latest digital technologies and creative problem solving. The return to in-person meetings in 2021 will have a new playbook with even more innovation that boosts financial health for the industry overall.”

For the survey, 450 ConferenceDirect meeting planners were surveyed from Nov. 10–Dec. 4. Full results can be found here.