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52 . www.conference-news.co.uk . February 2012LONDONAltitude London's Peter Kerwood on theming your events: Event themingThe team behind Calmer Karma, the off centre corporate entertainment gurus, believes that parties will include key themes this year with a focus on quirky best of British, Roaring 20s and 60s (think Austin Powers) but ultimately it will be Union Jack central and bunting will reign supreme. Theme Traders, who dress most of the capital's best parties, believe that Cool Britannia will be huge this year. This will include military, Beatle Mania and even medieval England. One screen is good but two are betterBy adding a live Twitter feed alongside a screening of the Games or the Queen's Jubilee adds an interesting dynamic by showing what people are thinking around the world as it happens live on screen. Free options include visibletweets.com and twitterfall.com. During the 2010 Vancouver Winter Games, NBC set up a Twitter tracker interface that visualised tweets about each sport in a fun way. Look out for more of the same in 2012 and display them at your events. Keep up to date with all the latest Olympic news as it happens If you want to connect with what is going on in the Twittersphere during the Olympics make sure you follow @london2012 @london2012hq and @teamgb. The most widely used hashtags are #london2012 #olympics and #olympicgames. You can also become a fan on Facebook - facebook.com/london2012 and /teamgb2012 Games brand usage guidelines Remember to stick to the rules regarding how you market your Olympic event. The legal usage rights are very specifi c. What is L&P's target market? London's top business market, by far, remains the USA, which comprised 15 per cent of all business visits in the fi rst six months. The remainder of London's top fi ve business markets originate from Europe, specifi cally Germany, France, Italy and Spain. Positive growth has also been seen from emerging markets including most of the BRIC nations: Brazil with the largest annual increase (75%), then China (56%) and Russia (4%).How do you think the Olympics and Jubilee will impact on the city's perception as a business events destination? London is unique as an Olympic host city, as it is the fi rst time that so much of the Games-time action will be taking place in venues and locations across the city. Events will take place at a variety of venues, both new and existing, highlighting the diversity of London. Coupled with this will be its fusion of heritage and modernity, of tradition and innovation: where else could you watch the Beach Volleyball on what is the Queen's Horse Guards Parade. Above all, events such as the Jubilee and Olympics will highlight London's diversity and fl exibility as a city and its array of unique venues; whether a Royal procession on one of the most famous stretches of river in the world or the greatest sporting event on the planet, London is ready and able to stage events throughout the city on any scale.With the amount of investment coming into the city, London is being reinvented. Even visitors who might feel they know London well may be surprised by the developments which have taken place over the last four years. By this summer, over £11bn worth of investment will have taken place across the city and, with that size of economic investment, comes a long-term confi dence in a city, one which business visitors and events organisers will benefi t from both in the run up to, during and after the Olympic Games. How do you think organisers will be able to use the Olympic venues left after 2012? The 'halo effect' of the Games has been felt city-wide in the lead up to 2012, as a raft of improvements and developments have been made to the transport network, venues, hotels, attractions and more. Our role as the city's convention bureau is to ensure that we do as much as possible to support the MICE and events sector coming into London to take advantage of this changing events landscape both now and after the Games. Within the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park, there are fi ve main venues including an 80,000-seat Olympic Stadium, a cycling VeloPark, an Aquatics Centre, Basketball Arena and Handball Arena. After the greatest show on earth has left town, the area will be transformed into one of the largest urban parks created in Europe for more than 150 years, offering event organisers the option of making use of the brand new Olympic venues by booking their next conference in one of the exciting new spaces. The Olympic Park Legacy Company will offer a full range of integrated corporate events venues, from the 700 rooms in the main stadium, stadium concourse and the Multi- Use Arena, to hospitality 80m above the city in the ArcelorMittal Orbit and poolside dinners, as well as a 2,000sqm temporary exhibition and conference venue at the south end of the park.Do you see the meetings landscape changing?Business tourism is incredibly important for the UK and in particular for London. There have been great changes within the business and corporate events industry over the last few years including higher fuel costs, advances in technology which has led to more virtual meetings and of course the economic downturn which has made corporate events budgets tighter. Even with these challenges, London is still seen as the leading destination to do business in - both corporate events and business meetings. In this economically volatile time it's even more important for face-to-face business to take place. People still want and need to meet people in 'real time' and those meetings and events need to take place in a city which is recognised as a business destination and which understands business; it's the power of human engagement.Of course, even with less budget, more competition and shorter lead times, clients still need events, conferences and ceremonies, and clients still demand events which are innovative, creative and which best deliver their objectives. Whether it's raising awareness, celebrating achievements or reaching new business audiences, the core reason for events hasn't changed, it's about connecting and engaging.

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