Something that’s always struck me as a bit odd in my years of reporting on the meetings and events industry was the fact that I felt like many cities weren’t always promoting themselves in the right way to event planners.

Don’t get me wrong: I’m not saying that cities do a bad job of promoting themselves to event organizers. But I always had this feeling that there was a bit of a disconnect, that the promotion was more about working toward a transaction instead of making a real connection between the city and the groups they were trying to bring to their towns.

Today, I think many more cities are realizing that too, and that’s why innovative, forward-thinking destinations like Seattle, for example, are being much more proactive in repositioning themselves to planners. It’s not just about convention centers and ballroom space, hotel rooms, or airport access. It’s about what kind of innovation you can find there, and what connections you can make to the city’s more intangible assets. In the case of Seattle, that might mean direct access to some of the world’s leading technology and aviation companies, for example, as you can read in this week’s featured story.

— Deanna Ting

The Future of Meetings and Events

Visit Seattle Enlists Its Big Tech Companies to Reposition City to Meeting Planners: Visit Seattle is positioning itself as a broker of innovation, versus a sales conduit for meeting space, by introducing meeting planners nationwide to some of the world’s most advanced companies. Read more at Skift

The Meetings Industry Adjusts to Risk: The meetings industry is under growing pressure to provide education and best practices to mitigate risk, which is challenging due to the size of groups and costs to secure large venues. Read more at Skift

What Will the Future of Exhibitions Look Like? Selling exhibit space is no longer just a transaction — it’s a partnership, according to Cathy Breden, CMP, Chief Executive Officer of the Center for Exhibition Industry Research. Read more at PCMA Convene

Meetings and Events UX & Technology

Zoom Brings a Dash of Augmented Reality and Artificial Intelligence to Meetings in Latest Release: When we said augmented reality (AR) may soon play a role in meetings, we weren’t kidding. Zoom is the latest in a few companies experimenting with how to apply AR to meetings. Read more at TechCrunch

Q&A: How Teen Vogue Is Shaking Up the Traditional Conference Format: Erica Boeke, the vice president of experiences for Condé Nast’s experiential arm, discusses how the inaugural Teen Vogue Summit’s message will live beyond the two-day event in Los Angeles. Read more at BizBash

25 #Eventtech Startups to Watch This Fall: From Corsizio to Evia, these are some of the most compelling new event technology startups to watch. Read more at Event Manager Blog


The Skift Meetings Innovation Report is curated by Skift Hospitality Editor Deanna Ting [] and SkiftX Editor Greg Oates []. The newsletter is emailed every Wednesday.

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Photo Credit: Visit Seattle is positioning itself as a broker of innovation, versus a sales conduit for meeting space, by introducing meeting planners nationwide to some of the world's most advanced companies. CheWei Chang / Flickr