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The science of academic venue success

How Venuemasters plots success for its members: Academic venues have always held a unique position in the meeting and events industry.
“Many offer an ideal mix of central or picturesque locations, modern facilities and good-value,” says Terry Billingham, CEO of Venuemasters. “Yet they’re sometimes overlooked by some events organisers, who assume the day rates at Britain’s historic and state-of-the-art universities are too good to be true.”

Enter Venuemasters, a marketing consortium of over 50 British academic venues dedicated to helping this special class of venues find the success it deserves. For 35 years, not-for-profit Venuemasters has helped UK universities to share the cost and knowhow of marketing their facilities to event organisers. The organisation also provides a free venue finding service. Event organisers can simply call or email with their requirements and be directed to the most suitable venues.

Put on your lab coats: They also uses more sophisticated methods to plot success for academic venues, namely through annual research projects that help the consortium meet members’ and event organisers’ needs.

In order to help academic venues succeed, Venuemasters needs to understand what organisers need from them now and in the future. Top selection criteria rarely change: location, value, quality of service, and availability are always important. But organisers priorities and budgets change every year – and academic venues need fresh insights to stay competitive. That’s where Venuemasters research comes in.

“Our 2016 research project will involve hundreds of participants from the events industry,” explains Natalie Williamson, Marketing Manager, Venuemasters. “Through an online survey, we will chart the current plans and future needs of event organisers all over the UK. We then use that data to develop and improve our services. We also present our research findings to our member venues, so they can plan effectively for the future.”

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