The business events trends you need to get on top of this year

Sponsored by Melbourne Convention Bureau

Over the past year, there’s been a major transformation in the business events industry.

Event planners have had to become adaptable, flexible and more imaginative than ever to bring events to life.

Melbourne’s business event suppliers are at the forefront of this ever-changing industry and are setting the pace with the latest trends to deliver out-of-the-box thinking and fresh perspectives to help events reach new audiences and deepen engagement.

Interested in learning more? Check out the top trends Melbourne Convention Bureau (MCB) is seeing in the business events sector this year.

Socially-conscious incentive programs

Before the world was derailed by the pandemic, the buzzword du jour was sustainability.

Over the past year, the world has been through a collective experience that has helped to realign our priorities and do good for our community and the environment we live in.

We can no longer discount the event industry’s contributions to wasteful resources and as a result, companies and planners are looking for ways to offset these negative impacts and contribute towards the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals.

Not sure where to start? MCB can help event planners execute a sustainable event or incentive program.

There are loads of incentive experiences in Melbourne and its surrounding regions to help your people achieve a sense of giving back and feeling connected to their environment.

Book a VIP tour at Phillip Island Nature Park with a private ranger guide who will share conservation stories while your team builds much needed artificial burrows that act as a box for wildlife in the area.

Go on an Aboriginal Heritage Walk at the Royal Botanic Gardens and gain insight into the rich history of the First Peoples of Australia and learn about how Indigenous people use different plants, their customs and their ongoing connection to country and land.

Or, take them on a Sustainable Farm Tour at Green Olive down by Mornington Peninsula where your team will learn about their biological approach to farming and paddock to plate food production.

After the tour, you can settle with the view of their vineyard with seasonal farm grown tapas and a glass of estate-grown wine.

No matter what Sustainable Development Goal your organisation is working towards, MCB can help you deliver, while providing your clients with an educational and memorable experience.

Check out MCB’s free Event Support or contact the team at

Innovation stepping in to create safe and memorable events

With safety at the forefront of every event planners mind, there have been many new developments in technology to ensure attendees are safe and COVID-19 restrictions are adhered to.

Harry the hirer has come up with a nifty new bit of tech to helo businesses and planners execute events with confidence ease.

The new Smart Badge technology provides instant contact tracing, updates on room capacity limits and social distancing alerts allowing clients to feel safe and at ease during an event.

Where distance now sets us apart, suppliers are helping clients create high-quality productions in the form of live crosses and live streaming so virtual attendees can still have an engaging experience.

As an example Harry the hirer last year helped execute a live cross for Chinese travel agents to experience Australia’s first surf park URBNSURF which was well-received both near and far.

Making virtual and hybrid events engaging

There is no doubt hybrid and virtual events made a big impact over the past year, but the big question on everyone’s minds is this: how can online events boost engagement and impact?

Whilst you can’t replace the magic of in-person interaction there’s an exponential move towards the use of digital tools to help event planners and decision-makers bridge that gap.

From engaging Zoom backgrounds, avatars for virtual booths to fun working-from-home survival kits, there are plenty of ways planners can add a touch of engagement pre, during or post an online event.

Virtual reality and 360 tours are becoming the new norm to help event planners have ‘onsite’ inspections of venues and accommodation from the comfort of their very own home.

ShowTime Event Group also provides assistance for online events including ‘Out of the Box’ immersive events that include production execution and includes interactive activities such as ingredients for cooking classes and themed lunches and dinners delivered to your door.

Featured image source: iStock/gorodenkoff