Brands Are Breaking Away From The Ballroom - But Where Are They Going?

Brands are becoming more transparent, more authentic… just more real. This is especially true in the content marketing and social media space, but the world of live events has been notably behind in this trend.

The traditional recipe for a typical meeting has looked like this –

1 part leadership, 4 parts workforce, shake over ice in an expected hotel ballroom, and garnish with a motivational opening video

While this recipe is a proven mixture for success, people want more personality in their meetings and companies are looking to break the mold.

Unique and inspiring meeting venues are now more than ever in heavy demand for our clients. And the unique places we can hold events continues to grow at an astonishing rate.

PTC lets loose in the armory of Boston's Bay Village Castle

Some of the cooler places we've seen companies gather are the Kennedy Space Center in Florida, the National Bowling Stadium in Reno, and both the Boston and New York Public Libraries. Adidas even held a meeting at the Fore River Shipyard in Quincy, Massachusetts.

Not only are venues such as these a refreshing change of scenery for your salesforce or co-workers, but they also have the added benefit of being an ice breaker right off the bat.

Conversations are sparked by creative environments.

Think Rainforest Café and Planet Hollywood. In the restaurant business, "scene-scape" has been in for quite some time. The corporate world has decided to catch up.

Of course you could look to rent out the top 3 levels of the Burj Khalifa building in Dubai, but it's not necessary to go that far to find grandeur, opulence, or just a cool space. Not far from Boston or New York, the Newport Mansions in Rhode Island provide impressive Oceanside vistas -- The Breakers, Rosecliff, or Marble House.

The Breakers, Newport, RI

For those in the San Francisco area, think about holding your next sales meeting on the main cell block floor of Alcatraz Island or the USS Hornet Naval aircraft carrier.

Museums are also great options. To name a few – the Guggenheim, Kennedy Museum, Intrepid Sea, Air & Space Museum, the Museum of Glass in Tacoma, WA, the Museum of Science and Industry over in Chicago, the Antique Auto Museum in Hershey, PA, or even any car museum is sure to be a hit.

With its stunning rock striations reaching toward the sky, Red Rocks Amphitheatre in Boulder, CO is a pretty incredible space to have a gathering. And so are most concert or sports arenas for that matter. You can head on over to the World of Coca Cola and have your team suck down some of their signature happiness or don the down parkas and brave the cold of the ice-bar style Icebreaker Convention Center.

Red Rocks Amphitheater

A couple of the latest trends popping up and catching on in the creative meeting venue world are actually meetings at sea and vacation homes repurposed for company gatherings. Large and lavish vacation homes in places like Aspen, Colorado, or up on the steeps of Camelback Mountain in Phoenix, AZ offer themselves up for the feel of a luxurious company VIP getaway for a fairly reasonable price tag. While most vacation rentals won't accommodate hundreds of employees, a small company getaway could be exponentially more productive in a 10,000 square foot desert mountain oasis.

Camelback Vista, Scottsdale, AZ

Why? Because attendees are enthused to optimize their time spent with colleagues in such a fantastically inspiring setting.

Have you thought about how your next meeting with break the mold? We have. Let's chat.

Experiential Marketing Trends

Explore Cramer and Event Marketer’s first 30 trends of 2017.

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Jonathan Ronzio

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Additional contributions by TJ Martin , Brent Turner and Rich Sturchio

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