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Sponsors Add Value at 2021 Small Market Meetings Conference

Meeting planners who attend the next Small Market Meetings Conference will benefit from many sponsors who can help them plan successful events for their corporations, organizations and associations.

Meeting planners will collect a wealth of destination ideas when they travel to Cheyenne, Wyoming, September 26-28, for the Small Market Meetings Conference. Destination providers will be sponsoring everything from meals, booths and presentations to name badges, conference padfolios and airport shuttles. 

“Meeting planners take note when a destination marketing organization, like a local convention and visitors bureau, sponsors a Small Market Meetings Conference,” said Charlie Presley, chairman and founder of the Group Travel Family, which stages the annual conference. “That’s because they recognize that those destinations will welcome their meetings and events into that city.”

Sponsorship has a two-way benefit for meeting planners and destination providers. Planners gets dozens of new ideas for where and how to stage their next meeting or conference, and the target cities get to show themselves off to influential decision-makers from across the nation. One of the sponsors to look for is Jacqueline Grena, meeting and convention sales manager for the Greater Zion Convention and Tourism Office in St. George, Utah. 

“Meeting planners are important to our organization,” said Grena. “Just as we are a resource to them, they are our connection to groups, associations and events that would love to come explore the possibilities in Greater Zion. We’re excited to sponsor a luncheon. We are home to Zion National Park and have much to offer, but many planners are unaware of who we are and where we’re located. A sponsorship to us is undivided attention with all the planners to hopefully spark their curiosity.”

Travel Juneau will again be a conference breakfast sponsor. Vicki Logan is a convention sales manager for the bureau, located in Alaska’s capital city. 

“Juneau, Alaska, is an incredible place with gorgeous landscapes and wide-open natural settings,” she said. “As a sponsor, I have the opportunity to show attendees Juneau through our videos and visual images. That lets each person picture themself there. They see what Juneau has to offer both for their meeting groups and for their own personal travel.” 

 Every meeting planner who attends a Small Market Meetings Conference invests time and money to be there and, naturally, attempts to get the most value out of their experience. Paying close attention to sponsors is a good way for planners to make their conference experience even stronger.

Sponsors covet these respected customers because planners are the key to bringing future meetings business to their small and midsize cities. The right message is essential, and conference organizers help sponsors deliver their best pitches.

“A sponsorship at Small Market Meetings Conference delivers added exposure to the DMO and puts their destination or venue squarely on the meeting planner’s radar,” Presley said. 

Dan Dickson

Dan has been a communicator all his professional life, first as an award-winning radio and TV news reporter for two decades and then as a communications director for several non-profits for another decade. He has contributed to The Group Travel Leader Inc. publications since 2007.