The Skift MeetingsIQ newsletter defines the future of meetings and events with an emphasis on disruptive strategies that improve knowledge sharing.

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The Future of Meetings + Events

Skift Meetings IQ New2An estimated 100,000 people attended the annual Mobile World Congress last month in Barcelona, and about 30,000 of them stayed at Airbnb, according to the room-sharing company. Meaning, the impact of the sharing economy on the meetings and events industry is not something that’s going to happen. It is happening, and it’s just getting warmed up.

Today, South by Southwest (SXSW) in Austin announced that President Obama is going to give the keynote to kick off the conference next Friday. For years, one of the conversations around SXSW has revolved around the hotel surge pricing, putting the event out of reach for attendees who don’t want to pay $500 nightly for a hotel room they’ll only sleep in for a few hours. We booked an Airbnb (full apartment listing) in Austin’s buzzy South Congress area for $148 nightly.

Meaning, the sharing economy is helping power the knowledge economy. It’s providing more access to more thought leadership for more people to develop personally and professionally. Times aren’t shifting. They’ve shifted. See you at SXSW.

— Greg Oates

Social Quote of the Day

“Discover the transformative impact of creativity, design + entrepreneurship at #SXgood Hub: http://sxsw.is/1SdzT4S” — @sxsw on Twitter

LVCVA Unconventional CES

Tourism + Hospitality

Las Vegas Convention & Visitors Authority Launches Third ‘Unconventional’ Short Film for Meeting Planners: With so much hype and noise surrounding the Las Vegas convention experience, the LVCVA’s “Unconventional” videos bring that down to a human level by focusing on the stories behind the individual attendees. Read more at Skift

Generator Hostels’ Leaders Explain the Rise of Hostels for Business Travelers: Generator Hostels offers a viable option for business travelers by offering single rooms and focusing on how programming and design can drive social engagement among guests and locals. That energetic vibe is also attracting hip consumer brands to partner with the innovative hospitality group. Read more at Skift

Airbnb Exec: About 30,000 Mobile World Congress Attendees Used the Service This Year: Mike Curtis, VP of engineering at Airbnb said in Barcelona, “A couple of years ago I would attend a conference like this, and everybody would ask what ‘Air Boom’ was.” Read more at Adweek

The Scary Numbers Behind the Marriott-Starwood Merger: Post-merger, it’s estimated that Marriott will control over 50% of hotel market share in 17 of the top 20 U.S. meeting destinations. Read more at the Event Leadership Institute

Meeting & Event Trends Data

Convene’s 25th Annual Meetings Market Survey is Live: The meetings industry fared better in 2015 than in the previous year and planners are plenty optimistic about what 2016 holds, despite the challenges they face. For example, overall attendance grew 5.3% in 2015 over 2014. Read more at Convene

Knowledge Hubs and Creative Clusters – How Convention Centers Can Benefit From and Contribute To New Economic Development: They go by many names: knowledge hubs, brain hubs, innovation centers, creative clusters, magnet cities. Social scientists call the field economic geography, and they’ve come up with the means to measure the relative strength of the knowledge sector. Read more at The Convention Center Advisor

The 10 Most Interesting Stats Revealed at Mobile World Congress 2016: While launching its first video-only app at Mobile World Congress, BuzzFeed chief Jonah Peretti said the viral site now has 6 billion monthly content views, up from 100 million in 2012. Read more at Adweek

Next Generation Event UX

Lessons Learned Through the Course of TED2016: Reality is boring; let’s try something else. Kinect creator Alex Kipman believes that, thousands of years from now, we’ll look back on our current era as a pretty weird time. Read more at TEDBlog

Google’s ‘Android Garden’ at Mobile World Congress: A Place to Hang Out, Have a Smoothie and Androidify Yourself: Google created some much needed white space (or green space, rather) at MWC where attendees could play with fun apps and learn what’s next in Android’s mobile ecosystem. Read more at Android Central

How Can I Use Slack To Effectively Engage Conference Attendees? For the Digital Learning Research Network conference (DLRN15), Slack was potentially valuable in creating a space for themed conversations, socializing, and building inclusiveness. According to one attendee, “Slack is engaging because it is meaningful to us and we are driving the content.” Read more at eventgrid

How To Create A Longer Lifespan For Your Event’s Content: Microsoft’s OnDemand digital content has become a key factor in generating new potential customers. Approximately 50% of Microsoft’s audience now views the content in the OnDemand phase through platforms such as video libraries and third party content hubs. Two years ago, that figure was 30%. Read more at PCMA.

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Skift MeetingsIQ is curated by Skift senior editor Greg Oates [go@skift.com]. The newsletter is emailed every Wednesday.

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Photo Credit: Astronaut Dr. Mae Jemison, the first African American in space, discusses the future of space travel at TED 2016. Marla Aufmuth / TED