|Geoffrey Chaucer, the English poet, first coined the phrase, “all good things must come to an end” back in the 1380s. |
Chaucer was also a philosopher and an astronomer, but his famous quote, which came from a poem, was not derived from his philosophical vision of the future nor his star gazing. Instead, it came from a tale of 2 lovers.
I’ll bet that most people reading this have said that exact phrase: All good things must come to an end.
And so to the meetings and events industry.
I’m slightly nervous writing this because we’ve hardly had ‘good times’ of late. What with C-19, inflation, rail strikes, and staff shortages, to name just a few of our recent challenges. And yet. And yet we HAVE had a good year (2022). It may seem counter-intuitive, but ’22 was actually a very positive year, mainly driven by the sheer desperation of people to get back to doing what we enjoy and value so much – being with each other.
You can see it clearly in the charts. When we were allowed, and when we saw some clear headway (think Plan B), we were gagging to get back together again, be that business or pleasure. In fact, in hindsight, we shouldn’t have worried. We should all have taken a well-earned break, knowing that come the great unlock, we would be busier than ever, and because we’d made the foolish mistake of sacking off all our happy helpers (Brexit), we were all going to be busier than EVER.
We should all have taken a ‘year out’.
So to 2023. What are we seeing?
The numbers suggest that are seeing a calming down of markets.
The feast has happened (and we loved it), but our customers can only continue gorging themselves (on events) for so long. After that, things HAVE to return to normal.
Sure, patterns have changed, processes have changed, and people/habits have changed, and so, as businesses, we have to change, but the one constant is that people will, and always will, want to meet. The (very) clever people know that – just look at the price of the Cvent sale recently.
The Jan, Feb, and March trend has seen the beginning of a return to normal. A calming down of the markets.
It pains me to say it, but “All good things must come to an end”.
Prepare for the return to normal. If you haven’t already clocked it in your data.
And if you want to see see why and what evidence we have to support these outrageous thoughts, tune in later today to our monthly M&E update.