Don't Tell the Media
Thursday 04 May 2017
Luxperience has partnered with micenet to bring you the latest trends in premium business events. This month, editor Brad Foster looks at the complex issues around publicising events and incentives.
Luxury incentives and high-end events continue. It’s just that we rarely hear about them, says micenet editor Brad Foster.
Long, long ago, when I started writing about business events, companies would proudly allow you to run stories on their five-star reward programs to far-flung places like South Africa and Mauritius. Others would send you photos and stories of their end-of-year bash that was costing close to six figures.
And then along came the GFC where banks particularly were placed under incredible scrutiny on what they were spending money on. Meetings and events proved to be a soft target.
I distinctly recall the head of a DMC in Asia saying at the time that incentives would never be the same. Helicopter transfers would give way to shuttle buses, and fireworks would be reduced to sparklers.
Ten years since the GFC, things have changed. And they haven’t. Fireworks are back. Helicopter transfers are back. Business Class and First Class travel for high achievers is back. Reward trips to exotic locations are back. What hasn’t changed is that nobody is telling anybody about them.
Partly to blame is the business events sector, which hasn’t adequately shown that business events work. Compare what we’ve done to the reams of research on why advertising is so good.
The fact is that companies shouldn’t feel they have to hide what they are doing for their employees and key clients. If incentive programs and special events didn’t work, didn’t help retain staff, didn’t increase sales, didn’t strengthen brands, then companies wouldn’t continue to do them.
The only exception to this post-GFC secrecy is the multi-level marketing companies who are happy to share with us and others what they are up to. Companies from Asia like Amway, Perfect China, Herbalife, and Nu Skin don’t seem to mind telling us what they’re up to. If only others were brave enough to follow suit. If only our sector had some clear cut proof that events mean business.