Apr 11 2008

Grow International Meeting Registration & Sponsorships in an Era of Heightened Security

International event marketing can be a challenge. Here is a story of one association who developed an event strategy that helped it grow attendance in 5 years by 68%, expand its sponsor program, and reached new levels of delegate satisfaction.

The European League Against Rheumatism (EULAR) has grown its annual congress attendance from 4000 to 12,000+ between 2002-2007 during a era of heightened security around the world.

EULAR is a pan-European scientific congress for doctors, scientists, researchers and patient organizations. It is the organization which represents the patient, health professional and scientific societies of rheumatology of all the European nations. EULAR endeavors to stimulate, promote, and support the research, prevention, treatment and rehabilitation of rheumatic diseases. In line with UEMS, EULAR defines rheumatology as including rheumatic diseases of the connective tissue, locomotor and musculoskeletal systems.

In 2002, MCI’s Professional Congress Organizer (PCO) team in Geneva took on the contract with the intent of developing an event strategy that could realize the growth potential that EULAR envisioned for this meeting. The team focused on a multifaceted approach :

  • Developing a “delegate loyalty” program strategy for European audiences
  • Building a consistent and permanent industry sponsorship program with pharmaceutical companies
  • Launching a strategic event security methodology to assess current levels of safety and security; check the status according to local laws and regulations and set realistic objectives
  • Designing a “Green meeting” action strategy to reduce environmental impact while improving its financial impact in host cities

EULAR 2008 will take place in Paris.  The event is managed annually by MCI including: event business and marketing strategy, security planning, registration, housing, social events, sponsorship management, audio visual production, and “green meeting” evaluation.

About the author

Peter Turner

As MCI's Senior Advisor, Global Development Strategy, I help associations build and execute global growth strategies. Over the past 30 years I have served three associations (ASAE, MPI and IEEE Computer Society) as a leader of business, product and partnership development.

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