Methodology and Audience
In 2012, Development Counsellors International (DCI) conducted surveys of North American meeting planners with global meeting planning responsibilities to determine the “customer’s perspective” on the most effective strategies and techniques in destination marketing. This survey targeted meeting planners with direct responsibility for planning meetings in international destinations. Audience selection was heavily weighted toward the following titles: association meeting planners, corporate meeting planners and association management representatives.
The survey was conducted completely online. Respondents were contacted via email and invited to participate in the survey. A hyperlink to access the online questionnaire was provided and the choice of a $10 Starbucks gift card or a $10 iTunes gift card was offered for participation. A copy of the questionnaire and email invitation can be found in Appendix A.
In total, 187 responses were received. Respondents were categorized as associations (106 respondents), corporations (78 respondents) and association management companies (3 respondents). All surveys were edited for completeness and the responses to open-ended questions were coded.
It is important to note that this survey is a study of perceptions. A perception is an attitude, belief or impression and not necessarily a reflection of reality. Meeting planners have certain identifiable opinions and beliefs about doing business throughout the world. Some of these perceptions may be accurate and some may be genuine misperceptions.