How do event and meetings profs select destinations? Part 2

by Padraic Gilligan, Managing Director, SoolNua Last week’s post focused on how buyers select destinations and presented three of the considerations or criteria generally used for destination selection by meetings and events professionals – Access, Infrastructure and Value. Here, in no particular order, are another four – Appeal, Financial Support, Safety and MICE Infrastructure. Appeal – Number… Read more »

How do event and meeting profs select destinations? Part 1

by Pádraic Gilligan, Managing Partner, SoolNua How to select destinations for a meeting, incentive travel experience, conference or event can sometimes be a random, even quixotic activity. However, usually it’s anything but. The selection process is actually quite systematic, even scientific. In my 20 years + as an event professional the selection process has always involved these 7… Read more »

Building a compelling DMC brand: how the DMC Network re-branded

by Pádraic Gilligan, Managing Partner, SoolNua. What is a logo? Since the late 80s @Supergreybeard and I have been involved in a number of commercial activities that required an identity, ie, a trading name, logo, collateral material and, once the internet came on stream, a website etc. Over time many of these companies (Delaney Marketing Consultants, Ovation Group etc)… Read more »

10 ways to book a meeting on-line

by Pádraic Gilligan, Managing Partner, SoolNua In his weekly Meetings Innovation Report, Skift reporter Greg Oates provides a link to a compelling article by Charles de Gaspe Beaubien  of Groupsize Solutions on “Generation C and Small Meetings”. While technology has revolutionised the airline and hotel booking process for individuals, he says, it hasn’t impacted on the group… Read more »

Ireland – building its brand in Food Tourism

by Padraic Gilligan, Managing Partner, SoolNua  Way back in 1980, when he wrote “Nobody Told Me” John Lennon pithily summed up what it’s like living in this brave new world: Nobody told me there’d be days like these strange days indeed. Yet the beautiful strangeness about the kaleidoscopic way things diverge and converge these days… Read more »

Connect16 Dublin – why you must be there

by Pádraic Gilligan, Managing Partner, SoolNua Who are we? Are we travel and tourism professionals who specialise in meetings, incentives, conferences and events (MICE)? Or meeting and event professionals helping companies and associations communicate and connect? Or maybe corporate executives who organise meetings and events for our company? Or performance improvement specialists who dream up… Read more »

Start with Why – A new approach to meetings

by Pádraic Gilligan, Managing Partner, SoolNua Sinek replaces Peters and Collins These days Simon Sinek seems to have taken on the mantle previously worn by Tom Peters and Jim Collins as the most quoted author at  business conferences. Pursuing “excellence” and going “from good to great” have now been replaced by more profound and philosophical musings,… Read more »

10 ways to Nail your Sale


by Pádraic Gilligan, Managing Partner, SoolNua The Association of Irish Professional Conference Organisers (AIPCO)  4th annual conference was held at the beautiful Lyrath Estate, Kilkenny gathering almost 200 MICE professionals around the theme “How to nail your sale”. For the third year running I moderated proceedings and this time was honoured to work with such… Read more »

What Makes a Successful Congress Destination?

by Pádraic Gilligan, Managing Partner, SoolNua Congress Destinations In the late 80s when the iron curtain opened to reveal what used to be called Eastern Europe, Prague and Budapest were the first  actors to take to the stage and assume protagonist roles in the theatre of Congress Tourism. Initially they were unsteady and gauche, like the actor in Shakespeare’s… Read more »

The Indie Scene – hotels that do it different

The Indie scene hotels that do it different

by Pádraic Gilligan, Managing Partner, SoolNua A Musical Analogy It’s well documented how the business model for the music industry has flipped 180 degrees. In the past bands toured to sell albums, now bands record albums to sell tours. The hospitality sector has also undergone its own 180 degree shift. For the past 50 years global hotel… Read more »