Smart Meetings’ 10th Anniversary Party!
Smart Meetings magazine celebrated its 10th anniversary with a birthday party at The Smart Mart at Loews Atlanta Hotel on April 12. Smart Meetings’ second year in Atlanta brought many familiar faces to our party and some new friends for us to meet.
The “Let’s Get This Party Started” Welcome Reception sponsored by the San Diego CVB was hosted in the Overlook space, which is one of the most sought-after ballroom venues in Atlanta. The ballroom features a barrel-vaulted ceiling, Brazilian cherry-wood floors and an entire wall of 14-foot windows overlooking the Quarry Garden. The room was transformed by amazing bright balloon columns from Let’s Celebrate, which also provided beautiful spring flowers in custom Smart Meetings vases. AFR Event Furnishings transformed the event space with purple lounge furniture and custom-made lime green pillows. While lounging on the sofas, the corporate planners and suppliers enjoyed mouthwatering cuisine of watermelon, lump crab meat, cantaloupe Jell-O, mini skirt-steak tacos and scallions in smoky BBQ sauce.
Lethal Rhythms Entertainment mixed amazing beats to get the corporate planners and suppliers networking and getting to know each other. In the corner of the room, Liquid Sky Productions sponsored aerial performers that turned upside down, while swinging on a rig over the mesmerized crowd below.
Lisa Ford, CSP, CPAE, an active member of National Speaker Association since 1986, spoke to the group about customer service—a popular topic in today’s meetings industry. The session was about creating partnerships to get customers to continue to choose you. In the meeting industry, customer service is an important part of keeping your client happy, making sure they are having a memorable experience and creating a buzz about your events. “Customer retention must be a key strategy for your business. Keeping customers means increased profits,” Ford said.
Next, the Smart Mart one-on-one appointments got underway in the Ellington Salon as the corporate planners had 15 schedule appointments that were 12 minutes long where they discussed their upcoming business. The corporate planners speedily talked to the suppliers about their space needs and the visions they had for their upcoming meetings.
After eight appointments, Smart Meetings gave away amazing raffle “presents” to the planners provided by various suppliers. The “Celebrate” Refreshment break started off with The Imperial OPA Circus stilt walkers, who greeted the corporate planners in the Ellington Prefunction space. The room was filled with Petal Balloons from Let’s Celebrate to keep everyone in the party spirit. Cathy from Psychic Solutions gave the attendees readings into their futures. They also enjoyed domestic cheeses and antipasto platters whiles networking with their new friends.
After the last round of eight appointments, Smart Meetings gave out more presents, including a $500 American Express card, in honor of our 10th anniversary. Networking continued at dinner in the Overlook room. The room was decorated by Let’s Celebrate with a 6-foot birthday cake that featured Smart Meetings’ anniversary issue on the top. The company also created centerpieces made to look like large birthday-present boxes wrapped in our anniversary magazine.
The attendees enjoyed could choose from a buffet of food options: a Caesar salad station, mashed potato station, seafood station of shrimp scampi flambe in bourbon butter sauce and oysters Rockefeller, and a craving station of beef tenderloin. The dessert station had an assortment of cupcakes surrounding the birthday cake.
Liquid Sky Productions was entertaining the crowd with multiple aerial performances, highlighted by the backdrop of the sun setting in the distance. The corporate planners also enjoyed themselves taking pictures in the Majestic photo booth with new friends. We wanted to thank our Atlanta Friends for helping us celebrate our anniversary in style!
Missed the party? Celebrate with us at our Smart Meeting May 6–8 at La Costa Resort in Carlsbad, Calif, or Smart Mart on May 24 at The Drake in Chicago. And don’t forget to enter our anniversary contest, full of prizes at top resorts and attractions.
Finally, a big thank you to our sponsors:
–Access Pass & Design
–AFR Event Furnishings
–Hawaii Visitors & Convention Bureau
–The Imperial OPA Circus
–Lethal Rhythms Entertainment
–Liquid Sky Productions
–Loews Atlanta Hotel
–M3 Imagery Photography and Design—The Guy in The Hawaiian Shirt
–The Majestic Photobooth Co.
–Peach Tree Tents and Events
–PSAV Presentation Services
–San Diego CVB