meetings & events

We’ve managed more than 4,000 company meetings and corporate events. Bringing millions of people face-to-face to share their thinking, build valuable relationships, and advance their stories. Facilitating the human interactions that enhance the human experience.

our services at a glance

Despite technology’s ability to connect any number of people from every corner of the world, it simply cannot match a face-to-face meeting, event or conference in terms of building the kind of relationships that drive business outcomes. A survey * of 150 senior-level executives reported that in-person interactions deliver topline growth and bottom line results because they believe being in the same room is far better for networking (89%), business development (86%), workforce engagement (80%) and staying on the pulse of industry trends (62%). In fact, four out of five of these execs revealed they personally experienced a business success that would not have resulted if the interaction had occurred via video conference or over the phone. No doubt you’ve experienced the same.

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The many ways we help you maximize your return on investment:

EVENT ARCHITECTURE

Using our proprietary InVEST Framework™, we take a very thoughtful approach to designing a live experience that aligns with your strategic business goals and objectives while at the same time delivering high value to attendees. > Read More

PROJECT MANAGEMENT

There are literally thousands of details that go into running a successful meeting or event. We act as the central organizing force that ensures all the moving parts are in sync, on time and on budget. > Read More

VENUE SELECTION

Considering where and when you hold your event will be one of the top three factors influencing a person’s decision to attend, venue selection is critically important. That's why we have an entire department dedicated to sourcing the hotel, conference facility or convention center that would best fit your company’s needs and budget, and get people excited to put it on their calendar and make the trip. > Read More

EDUCATION DESIGN & MANAGEMENT

The content delivered at your event will positively or negatively impact attendance, perceptions and business outcomes. We’re relentless about designing educational programs that truly engage and inspire attendees in innovative and interesting ways. And we execute flawlessly – from the keynote speaker, general session and breakouts to interactive, self-guided learning, dynamic polling and virtual webcasting. > Read More

TECHNOLOGY

Our event strategists and creative technologists work with best-in-class hardware and software partners to enhance the event experience. Actionable data gathered through attendee touchpoints, such as RFID badges and mobile apps, provide insight in real-time of your attendees’ attitudes and behaviors – enabling more meaningful engagement before, during and after the meeting or event. > Read More

REGISTRATION

Mobile-friendly websites and dedicated toll-free numbers ensure your attendees can quickly and easily register online and over the phone. User-friendly apps and print-on-demand badges allow self-service check-in to eliminate lines at the event. And trained customer engagement specialists make sure there’s always a friendly person to answer questions or provide any assistance. > Read More

BRANDING & MARKETING

Whether you need branded event signage and communications, or you’d like us to plan and execute a strategic, multi-channel campaign, our team of marketers and creatives act as an extension of your team – following your brand guidelines, speaking in your brand voice and aligning with your brand story and messaging. > Read More

EXHIBITS & SPONSORSHIPS

Developing and managing this important revenue opportunity with your valued partners requires business acumen, creativity and relationship-building skills. We bring those skills to the table and can handle your exhibitor and sponsor program from beginning to end no matter how big and complex it gets. > Read More

BUDGETING

The business of running meetings and events is just that – a business. And we run a tight ship. Once the budget is developed, we manage to it and there’s no exceeding it unless you want to add something or change direction and the cost is approved. So, no surprises. What you get instead is a fiscally responsible partner who believes in following budgets to the penny. And of course, transparent reporting of when and how your money is being spent. > Read More

*Business Leaders Survey conducted by Meetings Mean Business

event archi­tecture

Around here, we don’t go right to the who, what, when, where and how. Instead, we start with the why. Why? Because it’s how you design the optimal meeting or event that’s not only innovative and memorable, but also geared to deliver the highest possible ROI.

Generating the desired business outcomes requires that our event strategists begin their discovery and innovative thinking with the insight as to why your meeting goals and objectives are what they are. Why different stakeholders would want to attend your meeting. Why the world should care that your company exists and go as far as to truly value its vision and mission.

It’s with this macro-level and holistic view that we start building out our proprietary InVEST Framework™ used to define and communicate how each event pillar will give the various stakeholders what they want and need. From the attendee interested in learning, networking and having a good time, to the C-suite who wants to know how the budget is being spent, how business goals will be achieved and how proposed technology and data gathering can integrate with your other marketing efforts and customer touchpoints.

Once the top-line strategy is in place, we work within an approved budget (either provided by you or developed by us) and build out a project plan – giving you a roadmap of how we intend to execute on the vision we’ve developed together.

LEARN MORE about Meeting Expectations’ proprietary
InVEST™ framework for live experiences

What we deliver:

Client benefit:

  • A macro-level view of our vision for your meeting, event or conference – presented in a way that’s easily understood and can be communicated to others quickly and effectively

project manage­ment

Going from the big picture thinking and high-level strategy set forth in the event experience framework to implementing all the millions of little details involved in executing it flawlessly, is no small feat. There’s an enormous amount of planning, sourcing, budgeting, scheduling and getting many people, places and things to sync up just right. It’s why being a meeting planner is one of the most stressful jobs there is – right up there with firefighters and the military. Seriously, Google it.

The point is, you don’t want to try to do this yourself. And you don’t want to hand the keys over to just anybody. A LOT can go wrong. Fortunately, when you give us the go-ahead, you get to keep your sanity.

We’ve planned corporate meetings, events and conferences for nearly 30 years, so we have it down to a science. There’s nothing we haven’t seen. No fire we can’t put out.

Seasoned project managers keep everything on-time and on-budget with the help of powerful, cloud-based organizational tools and collaboration platforms

What to expect:

  • A seasoned meeting planner who is your main point of contact and knows every detail of your meeting or event. Available via phone, email, mobile, text, Skype, Messenger, smoke signal, etc.
  • Cloud-based, comprehensive project plan and timeline so your team always has 24/7 access to view the status of things such as:
    • Hotel rooms and meeting spaces
    • Education design, speakers & general session
    • Food & beverage
    • Vendor & suppliers
    • Event technology & registration
    • Exhibit halls & sponsor fulfillment
    • Event branding and communications
    • Transportation
    • Staffing
    • Off-site events
    • Board & VIP hospitality
    • Entertainment
    • CSR Initiatives
  • Don’t have time to check in online to view the real-time project plan? No problem, we’ll send you scheduled or on-demand reports and/or status updates

Client benefit:

  • Peace of mind knowing that everything, and we mean everything, is being handled by people who’ve been here, done this – for nearly 30 years
  • Fast, easy access to an online project plan to see the status of your meeting or event at all times
  • One, single point of contact who can answer any question

venue selection

If you’ve ever planned a meeting or event, you know the venue can make it or break it. Therefore, you don’t want to give this very important decision to just anybody who might simply use the internet to narrow down venues based on desired dates and locations, plus the number of rooms and meeting space needed. There are a great many things that can impact the outcome of a meeting or event, like the weather, daytime traffic, transportation options, the price of airfare and other events happening in the area. And then there’s considering how well a city, its culture and amenities align with the preferences of your audience, partners and sponsors.

When you work with us, you get a team of experienced site selection specialists dedicated to staying on the pulse of the hospitality industry. Matching a company’s criteria to a short list of ideal venues is something they do every single day. And they have the benefit of Meeting Expectations' global resources and the fact that we’re known as one of the top meeting and event companies in the country. (If you don’t mind us bragging, we’ve been on MeetingsNet’s CMI 25 list twelve years in a row.)

It’s also great to know that our longstanding relationship with hotels, convention centers and convention and visitors’ bureaus, as well as our reputation in the business, help tremendously when we negotiate the contract on your behalf. There are so many details to work out and our negotiating skills are second to none. Just ask the CEO of Tropical Smoothie Cafe – or simply see his exact words.

We have a team dedicated to site selection who recommend the ideal venue based on your criteria.

What to expect:

  • A short list of venues from our exhaustive research that match your criteria and aligns with the vision set forth in our event experience framework
  • All negotiations with the selected venue
  • Best available group rates
  • Maximized hotel contract terms & concessions
  • Reduced food and beverage pricing and commitment
  • Minimized meeting room rental fees
  • Minimized deposit terms and attrition
  • Contract risk mitigation

Client Benefit:

  • Confidence knowing all viable options were explored and the chosen venue is geared to maximize the success of your meeting or event
  • Preferred consideration and bargaining power due to our strong industry reputation and longstanding relationships with hotels, meeting facilities and convention centers
  • Financial savings delivered by experienced hospitality negotiators
  • Peace of mind knowing our hotel contracts are reviewed twice a year by lawyers with hospitality expertise

education design & management

Many will argue the single most important element of your meeting or event is the quality of the education. Not only should it be unique and relevant, it should be delivered in ways that promote comprehension, curiosity and conversation. And while companies know what they want to communicate to attendees, we know how it can be delivered to create the biggest impact.

Our content delivery specialists design educational programs that ensure your message is received in innovative, multi-sensory ways that increase engagement. Yes, buzzword or not, we know how to capture and keep a person’s attention and we have the post-education analytics to prove it.

Once the educational design strategy is in place, keynote speakers are selected, breakout sessions are determined and digital solutions are configured, our event coordinators make sure every piece of content is in the right place at the right time for the right person. It can be quite daunting if you don’t know what you’re doing. Fortunately for our clients, we do it all too well. Ask us about the time we managed 400 speakers from all over the world. It’s quite an unbelievable story, and in the end you’ll discover we pulled it off without a hitch.

Keynotes, panels, roundtables, mastermind sessions, hands-on labs, even TED-style educational talks on riverboats – imaginative new formats are our sweet spot.

What to expect:

  • Innovative strategy for content delivery and attendee engagement
  • Agenda development and management in collaboration with your SMEs
  • Sourcing of keynote speaker, host or entertainment that aligns with your brand, event theming and budget
  • Speaker communications, training and coordination
  • General session audio visual support
  • Cloud-based repository of presentations and abstracts for all breakout sessions
  • Online distribution of presentation materials
  • Technology-driven solutions such as live-streaming, on-demand webcasting, interactive learning, live polling, mobile apps
  • Complete post-education analytics, reports and tracking

Client benefit:

  • Your content and education will be delivered with impact and in a variety of innovative ways in order to deliver high ROE (rate of engagement)

technology

We leverage the power of technology cost effectively in order to enhance the attendee experience and gather actionable data for better decision making, taking a very thoughtful approach to each phase of discovery, strategic planning and final recommendations. While some event companies may try to dazzle you with the latest and coolest thingamajig, we shy away from those shiny new objects in favor of proven, yet innovative, solutions we believe will delight your attendees AND deliver positive business outcomes.

Deciding on the ideal digital solutions is normally a collaborative effort between your team and our user-experience strategists, meeting planners and technology team. Working from a proven event experience framework, we explore different applications and platforms (that can be licensed or custom-built) that best power different aspects of the live event and all attendee journey touchpoints. Whether that be with a mobile app, an interactive kiosk, a data-driven projection technology, a geo-location technology or something else. Honestly, the possible solutions are as varied as the creative vision, business objectives and budget. The right solutions answer all three. And no matter what we do, we look to capture data that can translated into valuable insight to drive better business decisions.

What to expect:

  • Solutions designed to enhance the attendee experience include but are not limited to:
    • SaaS event registration platform that is branded for your event and tailored for your specific needs
    • Mobile app(s) that provide:
      • Attendees with an easy way to do a variety of things such as build and manage their education agendas, connect to other attendees and exhibitors navigate the event, provide feedback and more
      • Ways to monetize the event with revenue streams like in-app partner advertising and sponsorships or e‑commerce
      • An “always-on” channel for communicating event updates to all attendees, plus segmented messages to different groups and stakeholders
    • Day-of-event solutions such as RFID badging, beacons, live-streaming, self-service event check-in kiosks, CEU-CPE credit tracking, real-time polling and evaluations, gamification, virtual and augmented reality experiences, digital signage and boards
    • Recorded webcasts and on-demand content libraries extend education beyond the live event
  • Solutions developed to maximize efficiency and minimize stress
    • Online and real-time selection tool for partners/exhibitors see available booths within the context of visual and interactive floorplans
    • For highly complex events, our proprietary and robust platform can manage the hundreds-sometimes-thousands of elements involved so that everything is organized and easily accessible
    • Cloud-based storage of digital assets, proceedings and conference papers

Client benefit:

  • The level of thinking that results from a collaborative team of strategists, user experience specialists and technologists who operate at the intersection of creativity, technology and business
  • Smarter decision making based on data-driven insights gathered from a variety of technology-driven applications across the attendee journey
  • Higher event ROI considering we can help integrate live events into your existing multi-channel, sales, marketing and CRM program

registration

The registration process is critically important because it’s more often than not the first and last impression your event makes on every attendee. That’s why we painstakingly plan out every interface, every question, every intake form and every person-to-person interaction. It’s this level of design thinking and attention to detail that compels us to deliver end-to-end registration experiences that aren’t just technology driven, but also human-centric. Sure, it’s imperative to put in place the right technology solutions (which, based on budget and scope of your meeting or event, could be a licensed SaaS registration product or our proprietary, custom-built solution). But it’s equally important to have people-powered solutions because sometimes there’s just no substitute for a friendly and knowledgeable person you can talk to on the phone or at the check-in counter.

Combining technology with the human touch for streamlined registrations and check-ins

What to expect:

  • Implementation of a secure registration platform that fits your functional and business requirements
  • Attendee engagement specialists staff a dedicated phone line and are available on site to provide assistance to people who need help registering for the event or checking in
  • Secure processing of credit card transactions
  • Streamlined on-site check-in supported by self-service kiosks and badges printed on-demand
  • Collection of all data points which is either exported as a file or integrated with popular sales, marketing or CRM solutions
  • Post-event attendee survey and report

Client benefit:

  • A positive attendee experience when registering for the event and checking in
  • Access on-demand to all data collected on registrants during the registration process which can inform and influence decisions on how best to engage them during and after the meeting or event

branding & marketing

How big a role we play in branding and marketing your meeting or event is entirely up to you. For some clients whose in-house team can provide marketing and creative support for events, we support them with exploration of branding opportunities, such as expert signage design and other applications of the brand to the on-site experience. Equipped with your brand guidelines, we apply your brand voice to email messages, registration websites, apps and more. For other clients we develop and produce everything. From imagining the event and creative concept, to attendee and exhibitor acquisition campaigns and planning out every marketing touchpoint for each of the different stakeholder groups. To the strategy, design, copy and production of each marketing and communication tactic. And finally, to reporting on analytics derived from the entire campaign. No matter which scenario you choose, we guarantee a talented marketing, creative and production team that will work as an extension of your own.

Delivering brand experiences and marketing campaigns to attract audiences and move them successfully through your event

What to expect:

  • Event branding concept, value proposition and messaging matrix
  • Multi-channel marketing strategy, creative concepts and execution
  • Branded mobile- and SEO-friendly websites
  • Print communications, including direct mail, brochures, invitations
  • Email marketing campaigns
  • Traditional and digital advertising
  • Social media marketing and monitoring
  • Media relations
  • Conference apps
  • Engagement vehicles such as including gamification and matchmaking apps
  • Event photography
  • Video storytelling strategy, concept, scripting, shooting, editing and animation
  • Sourcing and production management of promotional items
  • Survey design and implementation

Client benefit:

  • Full support of an award-winning marketing and creative team experienced in developing and executing multi-channel campaigns proven to drive attendance, maximize engagement and inspire attendees to think, feel and act positively

exhibits and sponsorships

The difference between an average partner and sponsorship program and one that serves as vibrant economic engine – capable of producing up to 50% of the revenue of your event – all depends on who develops it.

You see, this opportunity can go far beyond simply charging for booth space or sponsor signage. Our clients have realized considerable additional revenue when they entrust us with the strategic responsibility of managing their entire ecosystem of partners and sponsors. We’ll frame out an innovative and effective program and market it for you while treating your valuable partner relationships with care. We can also execute everything from developing each exhibitor and sponsor contract to fulfilling and enforcing all the terms of those contracts.

Custom designed programs, complete with educational opportunities and innovative attendee engagement experiences, deliver higher ROI for your partners and sponsors

What to expect:

  • Innovative program framework
  • Educational opportunities (i.e. demo pod, mini-theatre, innovation show) to maximize the exhibitor ROI
  • Creative engagement programs and branded experiences such as augmented or virtual reality
  • Exhibit hall design and layout
  • Sales and marketing campaigns targeting potential exhibitors, including prospectus design and delivery, contracting and fulfillment
  • Payment processing and progress reporting of sales transactions
  • Online and real-time selection tool for partners/exhibitors see available space within the context of visual and interactive floorplans
  • Digital asset management
  • On-site show implementation logistics
  • Contract fulfillment and enforcement terms

    Client benefit:

    • Additional revenue that can be generated from a robust program that goes far beyond charging booth space
    • Deliver better ROI for your partners to increase sales and loyalty
    • Outsource sales and contract negotiations to a team who will maintain good relations with your valued partners

    budgeting

    While it’s unfortunate to say, 50% of our new clients come to us because their last meeting or event went over budget. Reason being, we've built a reputation for being incredibly fiscally responsible and treating our clients’ money like it’s our own.

    Our finance and accounting team manages more than $40 million in client event budgets every year. They help develop the budget at the beginning, ensure the whole team is managing to the budget during the project and delivering any critical financial information whenever needed, perform post-event wrap-up reporting, necessary bank reconciliations and tax preparation.

    Budgets are developed, managed to and reported by an experience team led by a licensed CPA

    What to expect:

    • Comprehensive financial reporting:
      • Profit and loss statement
      • Balance sheet
      • Statement of cash flows
      • Project reports
      • Variance reports
      • Conference projections
      • Wrap-up reporting
    • Budget development management
    • Accounting solutions for foreign currency transactions
    • Audit and tax preparation
    • Bank account reconciliation and cash management
    • AP / AR management
    • Establishment of internet merchant accounts
    • Online credit card processing
    • PCI compliance

    Client benefit:

    • Peace of mind knowing that the budget number set at the beginning is the same as the actual number you spend come the end
    • A comprehensive list of reports delivered throughout the engagement or on demand