Why “Design Thinking” in Event Planning is the Next Big Thing

December 21, 2018 Susan Serena

Not too long ago, a piece was written that is very enlightening for event planning companies. The Venetian collaborated with Skift to create a comprehensive report titled “The Rise of Design Thinking in Meetings and Events.” So, we had to create an article for our busy readers who would appreciate a more concise form of the report. In other words, this article is a review of some of the inferences we found to be most valuable but you can access the full report on the website for The Venetian.

So, what is “design thinking”? Well, in terms of what it means to event planning companies, it’s a way of merging all the countless components of a corporate meeting plan that would help you accomplish a set of business goals. Meaning, the focus of the event is “designed” to specifically meet the customer’s exact goals.


What Design Thinking Means to Event Planning Companies

Event planning companies are continuously looking for innovative ways to capture the imagination and attention of meeting attendees, and they know that a need to engage attendees has drastically changed over the years. Design thinking helps by event planning companies a way to shape and organize all of the elements that goes into planning an event for optimum end-user engagement.

The Venetian ǀ Sands Expo collaborates with corporate event planners to design the attendees’ experience while always keeping the company’s objectives at the forefront. According to Chandra Allison, who is the senior vice president of sales, “Companies have to think about their core purpose and what they need to achieve, but they also have to recognize that smaller subcommunities can exist within a single event. Clients can use the wide variety of spaces we offer to address their core purpose while accommodating multiple attendee segments. Clients achieve tremendous success when they use this approach, which is being referred to as ‘festivalization.'”

Hmmmm, who’s heard of Festivalization? Well, it’s currently on the top of the event industry trends, and is best defined as the manifestation of design thinking. It entails leveraging an assortment of property assets and abilities to deliver a more impactful brand activation and richer attendee engagement. Clients at The Venetian are progressively looking above and beyond essential exhibit and meeting spaces and asking to integrate exclusive spaces and experiences into their events.

“We’re seeing more clients ask how they can use our property as a platform for festivalization — they’re almost thinking of the resort as a small city,” Allison says. “Blank-canvas spaces such as our expo halls allow clients to build everything from community villages to silent discos. But in addition to meeting spaces, we see clients making much more use of smaller spaces like restaurants and even shops to cater to the needs of subsegments. We’re promoting the use of creative additions like nontraditional spaces, new cocktail experiences, and new restaurant concepts.”

Don’t misinterpret what we’re saying here though. Design thinking doesn’t end with festivalization. Event planning companies are realizing the need to be more advanced in every way. It’s not enough to just imitate what was done in the past; companies want to leverage state-of-the-art digital technology and out-of-the-box thinking in order to bring their brands to life.



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