Title

Developing Loyalty Programs for Convention Attendees: An Exploratory Study

Document Type

Article

Abstract

Reward programs build loyalty for hospitality businesses. Such programs are rare in the convention industry, despite the fact that the industry is challenged to increase attendance while maximizing profits. This study evaluated the attributes of a possible reward program for convention attendees. Attendees at a large international convention completed a survey on which they rated potential reward program attributes and benefits. Benefits were classified into four primary dimensions: monetary, redemption, functional, and recognition; and two secondary categories: tangible–intangible and direct–indirect. Attendees prefer tangible, monetary rewards directly related to the convention. Suggestions are provided for creating effective reward programs that could increase loyalty for conventions.