wttc.com

Meeting Planners Best Resource for Conference Facilities

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February 19  |  connect in the city  |   Andrew Maxwell


meeting planners best resourceA meeting planner wears many hats. Depending on which part of their job tasks they are working on, meeting planners can be busy; negotiating, reviewing contracts, implementing a marketing plan to attract attendees, or just plain old being busy executing a program. As you can tell from that short job description, it does takes a certain kind of person to plan an event.

Anyone that’s involved in the supplier side of the meetings and events industry knows, firsthand, how hard it is to get in front of meeting planners. It’s really not that meeting planners are avoiding suppliers, trust me, they’re not. It really boils down to there are just not enough hours in the day sometimes.

Helping Meeting Planners Plan a Conference

If you have been to our website, WTTC.com, before then you know that it’s our priority to showcase conference facilities and suppliers to meeting and event planners. Over the last year we’ve been busy revamping our directory with the goal of simplifying the process. In other words we are trying to make it as easy as possible to put the right event suppliers in touch with the right meeting planners.

Some of the Changes That We’ve Made to WTTC.com-The Meeting Planners Best Resource

meeting planners best resource refine searchURL simplification – up until now each city that we listed in our directory was a separate URL. We’ve recently moved all of our supplier listings onto one URL (or as we refer to it, city), connect.wttc.com. By changing from many URLs to one, we are able to better optimize our supplier listings. And the beauty of all of this is that it’s always free for meeting planners. Conference facilities and event suppliers are also able to have a free listing.

Fine tuning our focus – in the past our business model was based on a publishing business model. In other words, we achieved our revenue through advertising. While we still offer paid advertising, our focus has shifted. Our ultimate goal is to provide traffic. And of course the more traffic we generate the better it is for those that list on our site. In addition, we are also becoming active in green meetings, industry news and industry education. We love to hear from event planning students.

So if you haven’t visited our directory in a while we invite you to take a look at our revamped directory. For meeting planners our goal is simple: to provide the best resource of conference facilities and suppliers. For more on how WTTC.com works for planners, click here. For our industry vendors, our goal is to provide you with the ever coveted leads from meeting planners. Click here for more information on how our directory will benefit conference facilities and suppliers.

 

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Vendor Spotlight: Pinpoint National Photography

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October 20  |  wttc vendor spotlight  |   Andrew Maxwell

Michael Marmur, President of Pinpoint National Photography, frequently receives last-minute calls from event planners organizing corporate holiday parties. “They have so many details to take care of that photography is sometimes the last box they tick off,” he explains.

Pinpoint can always accommodate these rush needs. The company, based in Toronto, also operates in every major city and most smaller communities across Canada, using a network of local, established photographers who are on call. With this wide reach, Pinpoint can quickly supply multiple photographers for one large event, or cover different company offices simultaneously. And clients don’t have to worry about travel costs since photographers live in the cities where they work.


Pinpoint guarantees a quote within four hours of your call or email, with one account manager coordinating all details and ensuring the right photographer is chosen for your assignment.  “We try to make the whole process as easy as we can,” Michael says. “We do all the heavy lifting from start to finish.”

The heavy lifting always includes a detailed confirmation sheet and digital post-production (colour correction and light balancing) so there are no surprise add-ons at invoice time.  Among its many other services Pinpoint can also print images at the event site, upload photos to a custom website or create a DVD of the event.  Caroline Aston, Principal Planner at Aston Events & Communications in Toronto, frequently calls on Pinpoint. “Michael and his team of professional photographers provide outstanding service, take care of all photography concerns and make event guests and delegates feel at ease,” she says. “They produce great results every time.”

Need an idea to make a client’s holiday party stand out? Pinpoint can set up a photo “booth” where guests, individually or in groups, can have their portrait taken, printed and framed on site.  They can take a professional photo home the same night as a memento. For more information, or to request a quote, contact Michael at 416-221-3773 or 1-877-245-3859 or by email at info@pinpointnationalphotography.com.

 

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AWARD-WINNING YEAR FOR THE VANCOUVER CONVENTION CENTRE

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September 30  |  green meetings, meeting and event industry news  |   Andrew Maxwell

The Vancouver Convention Centre’s leadership in environmental sustainability, venue management and innovative programs is in the spotlight. These efforts have earned the Centre many prestigious awards over the past year, including the International Association of Venue Managers (IAVM)’s 2011 Venue Excellence Award, presented last week in Phoenix, Arizona during its Annual Convention and Trade Show.

“We’re extremely honoured to be recognized with the IAVM Venue Excellence Award in the Convention Centre category,” says Ken Cretney, General Manager, Vancouver Convention Centre. “This award speaks to our team’s commitment to operational excellence while continuing to deliver exceptional service to our guests, community and other stakeholders.”

The IAVM Venue Excellence Awards recognizes venues that demonstrate excellence in the management and operation of public assembly venues, which were assessed on four criteria: service to the community, team building/professional development, safety and security, and operational excellence.

“These awards were created to recognize outstanding venues. The venues that have been chosen this year have demonstrated exceptional leadership, innovation, and unsurpassed commitment of the highest standards within our industry. They are most deserving of this recognition,” says IAVM Chairman of the Board, John Siehl.

The Vancouver Convention Centre also won the International Association of Congress Centres’ (AIPC) 2011 Innovation Award as the Overall Winner in late June, an award that recognizes initiatives that represent “innovation”– the development of a new, more creative or more effective approach to any aspect of convention centre management, operations or marketing.


The award recognizes the Centre’s Service Excellence Program, a program launched to coincide with the opening of its West building expansion in 2009. The program is multifaceted, including daily service line-up meetings, guest service training, a Guest Ambassador Team and innovative delegate resources to ensure that every guest experiences unparalleled service at every touch point.

“We’re very proud of the impact of our Service Excellence Program and to be recognized by AIPC for this team effort,” adds Cretney. “We want to ensure that our guests are not only inspired by the glass, wood and spectacular views of our effective approach to any aspect of convention centre management, operations or marketing.

The award recognizes the Centre’s Service Excellence Program, a program launched to coincide with the opening of its West building expansion in 2009. The program is multifaceted, including daily service line-up meetings, guest service training, a Guest Ambassador Team and innovative delegate resources to ensure that every guest experiences unparalleled service at every touch point.

“We’re very proud of the impact of our Service Excellence Program and to be recognized by AIPC for this team effort,” adds Cretney. “We want to ensure that our guests are not only inspired by the glass, wood and spectacular views of our stunning West building, but also by our incredible service. The program is a success because it has truly been embraced by every employee along with all of our official suppliers.”

From all of us here at WTTC.com, congratulations Vancouver Convention Center on a job well done.

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Meetings and Events Updates for Areas Affected by Hurricane Irene

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August 29  |  meeting and event industry news, wttc our cities  |   Andrew Maxwell

For meetings and events occurring on the eastern seaboard the worst seems to be over for most parts affected by hurricane Irene. Right now the system is a tropical depression situated over Québec and moving northeast. As we have seen from the news footage most of the damage seems to have occurred from the large amounts of rainfall as a result of the hurricane. New York City, for the first time, issued a mandatory evacuation order in the lead up to the storm. As always there are those voices saying that the news agencies overreacted. However most of our readers would agree that it’s better to err on the side of caution – especially with hurricanes. Does the word Katrina need anything?

For those of you that have meetings or conventions scheduled on the East Coast then I’m sure you’re busy just trying to get to those meetings (if there even occurring at all). All three major airports around New York City were closed but are now slowly getting back to normal. Boston, Philadelphia and Washington DC, like New York City, are all slowly working through their backlog of flights.

Where to Find Updates If You Are Meeting’s Been Affected by Hurricane Irene


Here at WTTC.com we’ve been keeping our eye on the situation as it’s been unfolding in the areas represented on our website (Boston, New York City, Philadelphia, Washington DC). For up-to-date information you can refer to Huffington Post’s hurricane Irene page. Each cities convention and visitors Bureau (CVB) websites are great ways to find up-to-date information. If you have a meeting or need to travel to Boston you can check out their updates here. New York City’s official visitor site did an excellent job at keeping their information up to date throughout the storm. A look at Philadelphia’s site indicates that business is pretty much normal there. Washington DC’s site is still providing weather related updates and cancellations. Pretty good considering that DC was still recovering from the earthquake a few days earlier. Our hats go off to the tourism officials as they have done an outstanding job throughout this trying week.

So don’t despair as life is slowly getting back to normal on the East Coast. Many people are still without power (CMP is reporting that 275,000 customers had lost power on Sunday) as work crews are working around-the-clock to get customer’s power back. It seems the tricky part remaining is to get air traffic moving at a normal pace. So if you’re one of those persons stuck in an airport waiting for a flight to get to your destination hold tight as with each passing hour more and more flights are heading to affected areas.

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