Who doesn’t like getting stuff for free?
I know I do! But did you know that CVBs are rolling out the red carpet when it comes to offering free services for planners? That’s right – free! How is that possible? So what’s the catch? Well, their services are free to you, the meeting planners because their services are already paid for! CVBs are non-profit organizations that represent hotels, meeting and convention facilities and a host of meetings service providers within a particular destination. Funded primarily by local hotel occupancy taxes, a CVB’s main purpose is to attract tourism, meetings, conventions and events to their destination. Since they really want your business, it’s well worth their while to provide a wide range of complimentary services to help you plan and execute successful events in their cities. So why NOT take advantage of the free services CVBs are offering:
Knowledge of the Destination:
Since CVBs are the experts of their respective destinations, they have the ability to offer you unbiased knowledge and a unique destination perspective that can be invaluable in guiding you in the right direction. Nothing beats first-hand experience when it comes to picking a destination and understanding what it has to offer, so make sure to take advantage of complimentary familiarization (FAM) tours and guided site inspections many CVBs provide.
RFP Gathering and Site Selection:
Think of a CVB as a matchmaker that can help you select the right hotel and meeting spaces for your group. Because they have extensive knowledge about the properties and facilities in their destination, they can do the legwork for you by sending out your request for proposals (RFP) to select properties that meet your criteria.
CVBs can also be an invaluable resource for gathering information and providing referrals for local resources that fit your meeting needs, including airport, transportation, city services, florists, speakers and recreational activities.
Since CVBs have a vested interest in the success of your event, many offer pre-event attendance marketing services including customized presentations, news and press releases, email blasts, custom web pages, promotional materials and assistance with pre- and post-stay itinerary planning.
So with all these amazing free services within your grasp, make a New Years resolution to leverage these excellent organizations to help you plan a successful event. By working closely with them, you’ll not only save time and money and leverage their unique in-market relationships, you’ll also free up your energy to focus on the benefits your organizations and attendees will gain from your event.