The report, commissioned by leading organisations Unique Venues of London (UVL), The Westminster Collection (TWC) The Conference Bench and the London City Selection, surveyed 110 tourist attractions, prestigious venues and renowned hotels across the capital.
The key findings from the 2013 London Venues Business Report include:
• There is a positive post-Olympics feel, with 94% of venues expressing optimism, although there is an increase in smaller or more intimate events booked
• The 2013 survey supports the continued trend of short lead times for large, medium and small events – with events valued at more than 10,000 possessing a lead time of 5.7 months, and events with a value up to £5,000 - 2.8 months
• 63% of venues surveyed predicted positive growth in 2013 versus 2012
• Weddings are an area of growth, with 58% of venues reporting positive business levels. Private events in general (e.g. birthdays/anniversaries) have also seen overall growth
• There has been a decrease in the use of both adding value to win business (down from 26% in the 2012 survey to 8% in the 2013 survey) as well as a decrease in the use of discounting to win business – it was reported only 18% of business was won using this tactic
• However, 7.8% of total event business was attributed to being flexible with minimum numbers instead
• Day delegate rates (DDRs) have been used to offer price flexibility – with the maximum level of discounts varying between 21% and 38% (Note only 57% of venues offer DDRs)
• 40% of venues surveyed do not flex their prices in high or low demand periods at all
• 73% of the London venues surveyed plan to invest capital into their event spaces in 2013
• Tourist venues were planning the most investment – perhaps in response to the positivity from the Olympics
• 92% of venues surveyed offer a wireless connection to delegates, with 80% of these offering a free service
• Of the venues that use social media, 99% use Twitter to engage with potential customers
• Online communications methods are in the top three most popular sales methods for building relationships, along with direct sales and word of mouth
A statement issued by representatives from Unique Venues of London, The Westminster Collection, the London City Selection and The Conference Bench reads: “Discovering such interesting results last year meant we were all very keen to team up again in 2013. We are pleased that there are so many positive results in this competitive market – and proud of the fact that we are able to display them in a way that is so valuable to the industry”.