THE DOLLAR VALUE OF MEETING IN PERSON
For those of you on the move this weekend…
There’s still some magic in face-to-face meetings that electronic communication can’t match. They’re more effective for relationship-building, sales and revenue generation. The evidence is that those in-person conversations produce an impressive ROI. And don’t forget valuable new contacts that are made in serendipitous conversation in the act of traveling.
The United States Travel Association published the results of a recent study it had commissioned through Oxford Economics proving that business travel drives revenue and ultimately profit growth. For this study, "business travel” included sales trips, meetings, conventions, and incentive trips. Their comprehensive analysis covered 14 economic sectors over a span of 13 years.
- For every dollar invested in business travel, Oxford Economics determined that businesses experience an average $12.50 in increased revenue and $3.80 in new profits.
- Business executives cited customer meetings for having the greatest returns, in the range of $15 to $19.99 per dollar invested. That's a 1500 to 2000 percent return on investment (ROI).
- The same executives identified the average return on conference and trade show participation to be in the range of $4 to $5.99 per dollar invested.
- Both executives and business travelers estimated that approximately 40 percent of their prospective customers were converted to new customers with an in-person meeting compared to 16 percent without such a meeting.
Are web meetings and teleconferences are just as effective? Among corporate executives, 85 percent found these remote meetings with prospective customers to be less effective than in-person meetings. Virtual meetings are less effective than in-person meetings with current customers according to 63 percent of the corporate executives.
What about incentive travel in relation to compensation? According to the responding executives, companies would need to increase an employee’s total base compensation by 8.5 percent in order to achieve the same effect as incentive travel.
Now if only it was less of a hassle for the travelers!
Phyllis Weiss Haserot www.pdcounsel.com