Why Go Green?
There is more concern about the decay of our environment today than ever before and there are two major benefits of planning green meetings: decreased cost and increased public relations.
- Recycling event supplies whenever possible
- Cut down your paper use by creating a conference web site, offer electronic / online registration and confirmation; and advertise using the web and/or email
- Collecting and reusing items such as table numbers and signage to cut back on the depletion of environmental resources and their budget
- Reduce the total amount of printed collateral by using double-sided printing and PowerPoint presentations
- The PR and recognition are undeniably beneficial to a company’s image.
Planning Green Meetings
So you have decided to plan a green event. What does this mean? Where should you start? The Green Meeting Industry Council states that “a green event incorporates environmental considerations throughout all stages of the event in order to minimise the negative impact on the environment.” If you are unfamiliar with green planning techniques, you might be under the impression that hosting an environmentally friendly event will be more trouble than it is worth. In fact, planning green meetings is both simple and cost effective.
Ten Key Ways to Go Green
- Select venues, accommodation providers and suppliers with green policies and practices
- Host all multi-session meetings at a central location to limit transportation needs
- Minimise paper with web based invitations, online event registration and electronic follow-up
- Utilise double-sided printing for all collateral and meeting related materials
- Give recycled materials precedence when making meeting supply purchases
- Choose a venue with an in-house recycling program and encourage recycling
- Decrease the usage of paper and plastic by using china crockery for food and beverages
- Select buffet style menus and donate leftovers to eliminate waste
- Coordinate with venues to use bulk dispensers for all food and beverage
- Encourage speakers to use electronic means of presentation
While this list may seem daunting, carefully selecting planning techniques automatically eliminates the headache. Technology partners such as Acuvent offer event management tools that significantly decrease excessive waste of paper. Online venue selection tools help event managers find environmentally friendly venues, making the implementation and coordination of green event standards a breeze.
Utilise Technology to Cut Costs
One of the main pitfalls to a lean green event is the abundance of paper from start to finish. Excessive use of paper can be eliminated by utilising an event management service such as Acuvent to communicate with attendees. Launch email campaigns for your events, send web based invitations, distribute pertinent event details and survey your attendees sans paper.
Use webinars and online media kits to ease the flow of meeting information without the waste-and cost-of sending out paper alternatives. Create an event webpage to send important updates and to highlight speakers and effectively reduce the distribution of paper materials during the event. Use online tools and resources to manage on-site registration and last minute changes.
After the event, send attendees a personalised follow-up email instead of paying the postage on a traditional direct mail thank you. Follow-up emails and online surveys allow attendees to provide feedback with the click of a button resulting in increased response rates. Acuvent assists event managers by automating each step of this process, decreasing the hassle for both the attendee and the event manager.
Selecting a Green Venue
Venue selection plays an important role in helping organisers make the transition from simply thinking green to actually going green. Online site selection tools have made it easy to find venues that have are going green in more ways than one.
When selecting a venue for your event, it’s important to search for a facility that can provide sufficient meeting space, easy access to accommodation and that is also centrally located.
Select a technologically advanced eco-conscious venue with an active recycling program to conserve energy, decrease paper waste, and encourage recycling. Venues with active recycling programs ensure that recycling bins are conveniently located throughout the hotel so that attendees can easily dispose of conference materials while being environmentally friendly. Technologically advanced venues tend to have electronic signage, drastically decreasing the need for paper flyers and brochures. Many high-tech venues also have automated energy savers that conserve energy used when lights are left on in unused rooms.
Go the Extra Green Mile
Begin to think green and proactively go green in order to execute more successful meetings and events. Make green initiatives a policy and consistently make the environmentally friendly choice. Make purchasing recycled goods and encouraging others to do the same a common practice. Let green certified venues know that their eco-friendly practices were a determining factor in your decision-making process. Encourage other venues to go green by voicing that green amenities do make a difference. Most importantly, spread the word! Tell your colleagues and peers about the green meeting initiative to encourage adoption for the green initiative.
Get greener with Acuvent
Ask us to show you how event management software technology makes your event greener – we’ll even use your own event if you’d prefer.