The meeting and events industry has come a long way from the fuel guzzling, wasteful, and spend-happy industry it once was. Sustainable events and cost-cutting now go hand in hand, so consider these 5 simple, and sure fire ways to reduce the environmental impact of your event and cut your overall event-spend.
1. Get a mobile app for your event: Cut down on the paper content and wastage at your event by providing your event content in a mobile ready format that attendees can download and access on their mobile devices. This saves attendees the hassle of lugging around programs, brochures and documents, and it can save you significantly on the cost and resources involved in printing the materials as well as recycling or disposing of the material post-show.
2. Choose the right meeting location: Start thinking about the environmental impacts of your meeting or event location at the earliest stages of your meeting or event planning. Consider the location of your event and how sustainable that city or country is and the cost of transport and accommodation there. There are now tools available to help you calculate the distance delegates have to travel to get to your event destination and the carbon emissions incurred as part of their travel. By choosing the optimal destination for your next meeting or event you can save significantly while being kinder to the environment.
3. Educate all stakeholders: Incorporate sustainability as part of your overall event strategy. Promote a more sustainable event as part of your marketing and communications plan so attendees, exhibitors, sponsors and event organizers are engaged and informed about it before, during and after the event takes place. By engaging all parties in your sustainability efforts you will be in a much better position to achieve your sustainability and bottom line goals.
4. Recycle event signage or go digital: Consider designing event signage and materials with a life span of more than one year. Reuse your signage from year to year or consider going digital with all of it. You’ll save on printing and design costs in the long run and reduce your wastage significantly.
5. Eliminate one time use products: Reduce waste at your event by eliminating one time use products such as plastic bottles, coffee cups, giveaways and signage. Provide water refill stations and encourage all event attendees and suppliers to reuse and recycle. For tradeshows and large conferences consider re-usable water bottles, and bags and gifts as part of your conference pack.
Going green with your event should not be a costly endeavor. It actually goes hand in hand with effective cost-cutting. The key to achieving both in tandem is the correct forward planning and incorporating sustainability as a fundamental part of your event from the outset.
What steps are you taking to promote sustainability at your event and to achieve cost savings?