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Types of Events - MICE

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Dozens of events. Choose the right one...

There are dozens of different types of events, from the common business-minded events through to weddings, birthday parties, graduations and Bar Mitzvahs, the list is extensive. So how do you go about categorising or organising events types into digestible, easy to understand and manage groups?

At Right Events we deal with corporate events, and they can be neatly divided into four general categories; meeting, incentive, conference and exhibition or MICE. In the context of travel MICE refers to “group tourism dedicated to planning, booking and facilitating conferences, seminars and other events.”

With the exception of incentive events which are usually leisure based, the other categories have a corporate focus and are heavily integrated in the travel and tourism industries. As meetings, conferences and exhibitions are usually repeating, annual events partnership working with the likes of hotel chains and their dedicated in-house events and conferencing teams is common. As is relationships with event spaces, food and beverage managers, tour operators and transport services. Tourism boards, travel associations and travel agents will also play a heavy roll in MICE events.

Below we’ve detailed each MICE category and looked at the types of events they can include to give you an idea of their key features and main functions:

Meeting

– this is a general term specifying the “coming together of a number of people in one place, to confer or carry out a particular activity.” Meetings of some magnitude or scale will take place in businesses and organisations across the country every day. In the MICE and events industry definition we refer to committee meetings, AGMs (annual general meetings) and other larger scale meetings that need careful venue, itinerary and other logistical planning.

Meetings can be on an ad hoc basis, quarterly, annually or according to some other set pattern.

Business dinners or award evenings fall into this category. They are a meeting of delegates for a shared interest and objective with a predetermined agenda and itinerary.

Incentive

– incentive events can take two stances:

They can be used to motivate employees and offered as a reward for performance.

Alternatively, they may be used to enhance loyalty to shareholders, members or customers.

Incentive events can take many forms; a day trip, night away, a short break or a week. There may be accommodation required, an activity to book, transport. They could be local, a little further afield, a city break, country retreat or abroad. All of which takes carefully considered research and planning to meet the expectations and needs of the client and the end user.

Some team building events can be included here, depending on the type of event. An away day or weekend with the opportunity to try new activities, physical challenges or experiences can be both rewarding and academic.

Conference (or convention - U.S.)

– this type of meeting involves delegate participation where discussion, fact-finding, problem solving and consultation are all common factors. There is no set frequency pattern for conferences. In our experience they tend to be held in-line with new company strategy, industry legislation or findings, or governing laws. There will inevitably be expert speakers on a particular topic aimed to inform, inspire and engage, with specific objectives.

Seminars are an example of conference. Usually on a smaller scale in more focused groups the premise of a seminar is to teach. A topic is discussed by a teacher or expert with a small group of students/delegates.

A workshop is another example where a group of delegates might engage in intensive discussion and activity on a pre-defined subject or project.

Exhibitions

– defined as an event at which products and services are displayed. Exhibitions are common in the art and creative industries with collections of work shown at a particular location for a set period of time. Fashion shows are another example of this.

Commercial or corporate exhibitions, of the kind we are involved in managing, might be referred to as trade fairs or trade shows or expos (US). Here, a particular industry might be coming together to showcase its services – a wedding fair for example or property show. Different businesses from the same sector will display their products and services to the public or peers over a set number of days or hours with the objective of new customer acquisition.

Product launches are an example of an exhibition where one item is the focus of attention; a new car model, piece of technology or gadget perhaps. The designers, engineers and/or developer will invariably be on hand to demonstrate, give a presentation and take questions.

Company or educational open days are examples. Key aspects of the business or institution might be showcased, snippets of typical daily activity displayed and the opportunity to meet with and ask questions of current employees and students.

The breadth of events covered under MICE is extensive. If you’re looking to hold one of these types of events please contact us to discuss your thoughts, ideas and objectives. Together we can put on an event that meets the requirements of your business, and those of your delegates. Experts in events management, venue sourcing, production and delegate management we are your perfect event partner. Call us on +44 (0) 333 577 1131.

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