December has been a month of giving and celebration during the annual Tamale Lift deliveries to our clients in the Austin, Dallas, San Antonio and Houston markets. This fun tradition was well-received and lifted spirits statewide. A virtual Tamalada event was held Dec. 15 to wrap up the activity and offer more information on the rich history and traditions of the time-honored tamales during the holiday season.
Washington, D.C., and Chicago clients joined us, along with 17 local partners, for an interactive virtual Gingerbread Alamo decorating session. The event was broadcast from Red Berry Estate with endless gumdrops, sugar sprinkles and icing to boot! Kits were mailed in advance for clients to assemble their own festive Alamo made of gingerbread along with friends and family from their homes. This new event was a lot of fun for everyone!
New Marketing and Attendance-Building Initiative
One of the most requested digitals assets from clients for their virtual and/or hybrid meetings are culinary demonstrations. Meeting planners love to showcase the flavors of San Antonio as a teaser to attendees to get them ready for their next visit to our destination. This month, we worked with The RK Group to curate and shoot three brand new culinary demo videos to share with clients in 2021. Recipes will be shared, along with the videos to elevate the experience as we encourage them to put their dicing and chopping skills to good use preparing fresh guacamole and fire-roasted salsa in their own kitchens at home. Traditional margarita and signature pomegranate martini recipes will offer a perfect pairing to the salsa and guacamole appetizers until they can join us in person in San Antonio.
This month we held planning site visits for definite 2021/2022 groups:
- Texas Association of Museums | TAM 2021 | Half-day site visit Dec. 9 | Definite for San Antonio from April 10-13, 2021 | 150 peak | 550 attendance
- National Rural Utilities Cooperative Finance Corporation (CFC) | Forum 2021 | Virtual site meeting Dec. 14 | Definite for San Antonio from June 11-16, 2021 | 1,200 peak | 1,800 attend
- Veterinary Emergency & Critical Care Society | 2022 IVECCS | Site visit Dec. 17, 2020 | Definite for San Antonio from Sept. 7-11, 2022 | Peak 1,100 | 2,500 attend
Convention Sales Production:
- November production – 8 bookings worth 6,360 room nights
- November Lead Production
- 55 leads worth 164,894 total room nights
- Citywide Cancellations:
- 74 groups, representing more than 488,285 total room nights and 568,155 attendees. Economic impact of $351,330,612.
Events Attended in December:
- IAEE Expo! Expo! – This year’s event was originally supposed to take place in Louisville; however, IAEE made the decision to make this year’s event entirely virtual. As a strategic sponsor of IAEE through our Synchronicities partnership, we were able to host a virtual booth, host several digital breakout sessions and attend all education sessions. In addition, our very own Troy Love won the Bob Dallmeyer Educator of the Year Award for his great efforts teaching Certified in Exhibition Management (CEM) classes over the years.
- HPN Global’s Annual Meeting – An actual in-person event! We attended HPN’s Annual Meeting in Scottsdale, Ariz. There, they demonstrated how a large meeting can safely occur during these times. We met with many HPN representatives in one-on-one meetings and attended their industry education sessions.
- Smart Meetings 3-Day National – Another event gone virtual. This program, originally scheduled to be in Miami, Fla., was a two-day conference. Virtually, we had one-on-one appointments with national meeting planners in all segments.
- MPI’s Healthcare Meeting Compliance Certification – This one-day certification course was a short-term virtual sponsorship opportunity where we were able to present, interact, and partake in this import certification course to more than 50 healthcare meeting planners.