I'm already signing a contract with a hotelier I met [at the EMA], and I'm also a couple weeks away from signing a second contract with another hotelier I met. It really was a terrific event.
Santa Barbara, CA (Vocus) June 15, 2010
Top luxury hotels and meeting professionals from around the country came together to do business, sample new cutting-edge technology, and confirm the advent of brighter days for the meetings industry at the Elite Meetings Alliance (EMA)¾Elite Meetings International’s (EMI) three-day event that brings together prequalified corporate and association meeting professionals with leaders in the hospitality industry.
Taking place at Terranea Resort in Rancho Palos Verdes, CA, May 16-18, 2010, the EMA included more than 1,200 prescheduled one-on-one meetings, continuing educational sessions for CMP credit, great speakers, and unique networking events.
“The verdict is in, the Spring 2010 EMA was the best yet,” says Kelly Foy, Chief Executive Officer of Elite Meetings. “With close to 100 top hotels and 100 qualified planners in attendance, it is clear that corporate and association meetings are back to stay – and our event helped stoke the progress. I cannot imagine a more productive three days, in a more conducive environment, than what we experienced at the wonderful Terranea Resort.”
Those who attended, share the same sentiment. “I was sad to leave... I was so impressed with this event, your staff, the quality of properties... and much more,” says Steven King, a meeting professional representing The Oxford Club, “I'm already signing a contract with a hotelier I met [at the EMA], and I'm also a couple weeks away from signing a second contract with another hotelier I met. It really was a terrific event.” And King isn’t alone—100% of the planners surveyed after the EMA expect to book business with attending hotels.
The Fall 2010 Elite Meetings Alliance will be held at the Kingsmill Resort & Spa in Williamsburg, VA, from October 3-5, 2010. For more information, visit http://www.EliteMeetingsAlliance.com.
EMI Technology Powers Business
Dozens of EMA attendees had the chance to participate in hands-on demonstrations of two of EMI’s cutting-edge technologies: SpeedRFP™ and FaceTime™ Appointment Scheduler.
SpeedRFP, a new product for creating, submitting, and tracking RFPs online, launched in April of this year and is already generating RFPs for meetings planners and hotels in the U.S. and internationally. As SpeedRFP gains adoption, planner input continues to be gathered to shape the tool into a game-changer for the industry. SpeedRFP is a completely portable and seamless RFP technology that is fully APEX-compliant. Free to meeting professionals¾from whom it is already drawing enthusiastic support¾any hotel can download the Community Edition at no charge as well.
Andy Anderson, Senior Vice President of Sales & Marketing for Destination Hotels & Resorts says, “We [Terranea Resort] were thrilled to host this EMA, and to be the first hotel company to ‘go live’ with SpeedRFP, which provides a great solution for hotels looking to maximize the time, resources, and energies of their sales organizations.” Anderson adds, “In just a few weeks since the launch of SpeedRFP, the number of RFPs received by our hotels has more than tripled, and these include many high-quality leads. We look forward to continuing to share the good news about the product with industry colleagues in the weeks ahead.”
EMI’s FaceTime™ Appointment Scheduler technology is a proprietary streamlined program which helps buyers and sellers request, create, and manage appointments at meetings and conventions. Used widely at industry trade shows including the 2009 ITME/Motivation Show and Meeting Professional International’s (MPI) MeetDifferent 2010, FaceTime facilitated the confirmation of more than 1,200 face-to-face business meetings at the Spring 2010 EMA.
The FaceTime™ Appointment Scheduler technology will be utilized to bring planners and hotels together at hosted buyer programs at MPI’s World Education Congress (WEC) in Vancouver this summer; and at the ITME/Motivation Show in Chicago in the fall. This marks the second year that FaceTime will power hosted buyer programs for each of these esteemed organizations.
Education and Community Responsibility
Speakers at the Spring 2010 EMA included Dianne Budion-Devitt of The DND Group, Inc., speaking on how to “Reinvent With Passion.” Budion-Devitt is an assistant professor at New York University’s Preston Robert Tisch School of Hospitality, Tourism and Sports Marketing, as well as president of New York’s chapter of Meeting Professionals International.
Also featured was Midori Connolly, CEO of Pulse Staging & Events, Inc. Connolly authored the first-ever set of guidelines for Green AV Staging, and is a trusted resource in audiovisual support for hybrid meeting design, production, and execution for clients such as BMW and PCMA; she spoke about “Beyond Water Bottles: the Business of Green Meetings.”
Another industry speaker was Jeanette Nyden, J.D., a former Assistant Public Defender and bankruptcy litigator, who founded J. Nyden & Company in 2003 to teach the art of negotiation. Nyden addressed “How to Strike a Better Deal: Balancing Your Need for a Fair Price with Your Need for a Good Vendor Relationship.”
Additionally, EMA participants had the opportunity to give back through an organized corporate responsibility activity at the Marine Mammal Care Center at Fort MacArthur, CA. The Marine Mammal Care Center¾a hospital for ill, injured, and orphaned marine mammals¾focuses on the treatment and release of rescued California sea lions, northern elephant seals, harbor seals, and northern fur seals.
About the Elite Meetings Alliance (EMA)
The EMA is a three-day, invitation-only event that brings together prequalified corporate and association planners with leaders in the luxury hotel industry to cultivate relationships and build business. Featured are private, personalized business development meetings, continuing educational breakout sessions for CMP credit, and unique networking activities. The next EMA will be hosted at Kingsmill Resort & Spa in Williamsburg, VA, October 3-5, 2010.
About Elite Meetings International
Based in Santa Barbara, Elite Meetings International (EMI) provides integrated solutions to enhance the performance of meeting and hospitality professionals. EMI supports this community through a combination of innovative technology, direct sales support, customized marketing programs and face-to-face business-building events. Additionally, http://www.EliteMeetings.com serves as a commission-free RFP-generating tool and a comprehensive vehicle for sourcing luxury, upper-upscale and upscale properties. EMI’s innovations include FaceTime™ Appointment Scheduler (http://www.FaceTimeScheduler.com), a sought after program for helping conference attendees identify synergies, manage appointments and make direct connections with one another; and SpeedRFP™ (http://www.SpeedRFP.com), a new time-saving product for creating, submitting, and managing RFPs online. For additional information, please visit http://www.EliteMeetings.com or call 805-730-1000.
For more information on the Elite Meetings Alliance, contact EMATeam@EliteMeetings.com or call (805) 879-4485.