Redstone attends industry events to help our team learn and grow and so that we can better serve our clients. Over this past month, Redstone had a presence at Connect in Louisville, the Meetings and Incentive Forum (M&IF) in Chicago, and IMEX in Las Vegas. Read below to see how Redstone stays connected in the industry.
Image from Connect Corporate
Connect 2019 brought together thousands of planners, suppliers and experts in the meetings and events industry. Attendees took part in marketplace appointments, which prove to be a very valuable tool year after year in connecting planners with suppliers and potential destinations for their meetings and events.
The trade show floor was buzzing with new and creative activations; highlights included a puppy lounge in the Fort Worth booth and custom coffee in the Puerto Rico booth! Daily happy hours provided a great networking break. More than 25 education sessions took place on the floor as well. The convenient location of these sessions were well-received and the headphones that attendees were able to wear to drown out background noise were a useful and fun touch.
The opportunities to network were endless. From the moment attendees arrived at Churchill Downs for the “Pink Out” reception there was never a dull moment. Delicious local food and an open bar kept everyone dancing until the very end. Connect 2019 featured some extraordinary speakers – the most successful Olympic athlete of all time, Michael Phelps, was a keynote on Day 1 and the conference ended with a Q&A with Hollywood star Nicole Kidman!
Attendees crammed in for a Speaker Showcase featuring Andy King and Marc Weinstein as they spoke to takeaways from the failure of the Fyre Festival. Andy spoke passionately about how he leveraged the fame he gathered from the Fyre documentaries to bring attention to environmental sustainability and zero-waste production in events. Other Connect 2019 highlights included CMP classes and on-site certification, a women’s leadership forum, tech workshops and a 40 under 40 awards breakfast!
The most heartwarming feature at Connect was a tattoo station where 75 attendees got real tattoos on the trade show floor. For each tattoo, Connected donated $1,000 to the Breast Cancer Research Foundation. What a great idea and a reminder to all planners that we should lead with our hearts and brainstorm outside of the box!
Redstone enjoyed meeting new friends, learning about current industry trends and hearing from unique speakers! We are looking forward to Connect 2020 in New Orleans!
Hosted from August 25-28th in Chicago, M&I Forums took over three major hotels in downtown Chicago to connect buyers with suppliers from all over the world. This event connects the MICE industry with pre-scheduled meetings allowing delegates to connect with the highest achievers in the industry and adding in some fun tours that highlight the city – in this case, architectural boat and bike tours, and even a helicopter ride!
Everything is scheduled in advance, which allows delegates to concentrate solely on business and making connections. The event app included a scheduling tool to connect with other attendees based on your business needs, making this a great event for suppliers and buyers alike. As posted on the M&IF website, “there is no substitute for meeting your customers face-to-face.” Buyers are carefully selected, pre-qualified and reference-checked to ensure that delegates only meet people who potentially have business for them and they come from top events agencies, corporate companies and associations.
Over the course of the 4 day intensive trade show, delegates had the opportunity to have 32, 15-minute meetings over a 3 day period and Redstone had the opportunity to meet suppliers from traditional and emerging markets to strengthen our existing network and expand to new horizons. Learn more about M&IF by clicking here to learn about their global events that take place in Europe, America and Asia.
IMEX America 2019 took place at the Sands Expo in Las Vegas (USA). The largest tradeshow for event planners in North America, IMEX America brings together over 12,000 participants, including hosted buyers, exhibitors and trade attendees. This year’s ninth edition of the event proved once again why it’s a must-attend for all event professionals.
The 4-day event kicked off with Smart Monday – hosted by MPI. The day saw more than 30 concurrent education sessions cover hot topics for association professionals and event planners. Redstone was able to participate in the Association Leadership Forum. During the half-day session, industry leaders talked about technology and the future of work, the drivers of change affecting the future of associations, and using foresight and imagination to address leadership challenges.
Day 2 & 3 of IMEX America 2019 was all about connecting with some of the 3,500 exhibitors. Hosted buyers were responsible for scheduling 30 minute appointments with exhibitors. During the appointments, delegates either discussed specific business needs or got a chance to learn about new and exciting industry happenings all over the world!
The opportunities to connect at IMEX America were endless. Some of the highlights included spin class, the IMEXrun, parties like IHG Signature event at TAO Nightclub, Foundation Rendezvous, SITE NITE, exhibitors’ many booth activities, and even a Canadian Thanksgiving Dinner.
IMEX encouraged all participants to “Think Green” and “Be Well” with various sustainability and wellness initiatives throughout the tradeshow. Everything from water refill stations, early morning yoga, name badge recycling, gift and stationary donation zones, and lots of water-wise and plant-based food options. They even encouraged attendees to meet with sustainable destinations, venues and suppliers!
Next year, IMEX celebrates its 10th year and Las Vegas will once again be the host. Learn more about IMEX America by clicking here. Redstone would like to give a big thank you to AMCI and IHG for hosting us at IMEX America 2019. We learned a lot, connected with some amazing people, and had a blast. We cannot wait to attend next year!
Attending industry events is a great way for planners to stay connected to current partners, form new business relationships and keep up to date on industry trends. Redstone’s presence at Connect, Meetings and Incentive Forum and IMEX proved to be extremely beneficial and we are excited to bring back everything that we learned and share it with our team and clients!
What industry events have you attended this year? Leave a comment below or share them with us on Twitter, Facebook, or Instagram!