Meeting Professionals International is one of the leading organisations in the MICE industry, providing support, education and networking opportunities for those working in the sector. During my time at EIBTM 2014, I had the opportunity to sit down with MPI Europe manager, Antti Lumiainen and find out more about the organisation, as well as some of the challenges faced by those working in meeting and event planning.
What is MPI?
MPI was founded in 1972 and aims to be the first choice for professional career development and a prominent voice for the global meeting and event community.
The organisation currently has more than 18,500 members, representing eighty six countries across its seventy clubs and chapters. MPI is committed to giving its members the very best in terms of professional development and business opportunities, with aims of creating a vibrant and well-engaged community.
What are the benefits of becoming a member of MPI UK?
Becoming a member of Meeting Professionals International UK & Ireland Chapter (MPIUKI) you’ll stay on the cutting edge of today’s constantly changing and challenging meeting environment!
MPI membership includes a number of benefits as for example:
- MPI annual conferences with exclusive member rates for the World Education Conference (WEC), and the European Meetings & Events Conference (EMEC).
- Thought leadership initiatives such as Business Value of Meetings & Future of Meetings
- Subscription to our magazine, The Meeting Professional online magazine.
- Unlimited uses of MPI’s Membership Directory where you can search for members, send messages, and connect with industry peers.
- A personal “My MPI”- A page on the MPI website where you can blog about your experiences, communicate with other members and join different groups to share ideas and learning experiences.
- Early access to industry research and trends through our research brochures
- Meetings Outlook, published quarterly
- Discounted educational resources – 20% discount on industry books ordered via MPI
- Marketplace opportunities – MPI connects you directly with the audience that matters most (over 18,500 meeting and event professionals world wide)
- Career Connections where you can post jobs and resumes online
- Access to the CMP and CMM programs.
What are the main challenges of running professional events?
One of the main challenges professional event organisers face is finding the right venue, in the right place, way in advance of the event date. If they don’t book early enough, they face missing out on cheaper rates and consequently reduce their ROI.
Today corporate events tend to be smaller so professional event organisers have to do more with less, which can be quite the challenge.
What tools are you looking for to hold in your hands?
I think that it is very important to improve engagement levels before, during and after an event. At the moment we experience a peak of engagement during the event but before and after an event, engagement levels are low.
For example, an event like EIBTM 2014 will last three days but what would be really amazing is if you could extend it to a week or even a fortnight. Event organisers would be really interested in technology that allows them to extend the lifetime of an event. Of course, there would also need a way of measuring the results produced by the technology to determine its investment value.
What do you think of the role of wearables in the market?
At the moment, I think wearables have a very limited role to play in the Conferences and Meetings industry, though it could be of use to events looking for the ‘wow factor.’ In specific cases like this, the role of wearable technology could be significant.
Having said this, there is a technology that has piqued my interest and that is the use of ibeacons, which is associated with holograms. Holograms integrated with ibeacons technology could be used to give smart indications to the people that are coming to the event from a specific direction.
I’d just like to say a big ‘thank you’ to Antti for taking the time to meet with me and provide valuable insight on the industry. I thoroughly enjoyed the interview and it was a pleasure to meet you and your colleagues.
Don’t miss tomorrow our next interview with Mahan Parizi, Lead Generation Manager at BEDOUK !
The author: Gianfranco
Gianfranco is Bizvento’s Marketing Director. He defines the company’s corporate and product messaging and leads the development of digital marketing activities. He gets inspiration from playing with his kids and cooking delicious Italian food for dinners with his friends. Visit www.bizvento.com or follow us on Twitter to learn more.