Winning Strategies Reveals What Meeting Planners Are Reading

November 6, 2012

Key players in every industry stay relevant by staying informed. A gourmet chef may call Food & Wine his “bible,” a decorator may spark her creative juices thumbing through Elle Décor and a boutique owner may scour Vogue to see seasonal fashion trends. For leaders in the meetings industry the need for information is equally important. So, what are meeting planners reading to stay on top of their game?


DCI’s study, “A View From Meeting Planners: Winning Strategies In Destination Marketing” reveals the media outlets that are the go-to tools for meeting planners. More than half (56%) of respondents selected Meetings & Conventions magazine, with 42% of respondents being faithful to Successful Meetings. Yet, in the MICE industry there are many publications providing industry news, featuring opinions on trends and identifying the factors shaping our marketplace. In addition to the outlets already noted, corporate meeting planners revealed that they are more likely to read Corporate Meetings & Incentives, while association meeting planners lean toward Convene and Association Meetings.


Beyond the traditional “trades,” incentive decision makers can also turn to mainstream travel magazines such as Conde Nast Traveler and Travel & Leisure to see what locations are trending. Because these outlets offer planners an edge in anticipating which destinations their clients may be requesting for incentive programs in the future, destination marketers often target these outlets through advertising and public relations.

While the media above could keep your nightstand stocked for a month with out-of-the-office reading, some of today’s most timely travel content is being posted on blogs. Yet only 3% of meeting planner respondents indicated that they are currently using social media to shape their opinion of potential meeting locations. That’s unfortunate, since some of the most diverse content in travel space is blogged by engaging personalities and their entourage – Sir Richard Branson, Arianna Huffington and Gwyneth Paltrow.

And then there are those industry gems, bloggers that have surfaced within hotel companies such as Marriott and top incentive houses such as Maritz, who provide additional knowledge-sharing for those working on the meetings and incentives programs that shape our industry. Given the fact that more than 90% of meeting planner respondents indicate that they are using the web to source destination information, we’re hopeful they will soon latch on to some of the industry’s most intriguing blogs as well!

Beyond media sources of information shaping meeting planners’ perception of places, Winning Strategies also pinpointed other techniques that meeting planners use to learn about destinations they are evaluating. Interested? The full report is available FREE to download at

Pam Balakian

Written by Pam Balakian

Pam boasts almost 30 years of experience in the Hotel Sales & Marketing Industry. She joined the team 25 years ago after working for Scott Calder Intl, a hotel sales & marketing firm that specialized in marketing & sales of deluxe hotels worldwide.

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