MICE for Hoteliers: Ancillary Revenue Avenues

August 25, 2022 Mihaela Lica Butler

MICE is an acronym for meetings, incentives, conferences, and exhibitions - although the term "events" applies better for hoteliers. As a matter of fact, MICE does stand for "meetings and events." As an ancillary revenue avenue, MICE is highly profitable and contributes to a hotel's brand reputation and awareness.

To put things into perspective, the global event industry was worth approximately $890 billion in 2020, according to Statista. Furthermore, the report predicts a market value of more than $2 trillion by 2028.

MICE stands for:

  • Meetings: like-minded people getting together to discuss common topics, share ideas, and network.
  • Incentives: motivate your employees by offering them special rewards rewarding performance, accomplishments, and production.
  • Conferences: Shine a light on your business expertise by sharing your knowledge. Invite niche speakers to display confidence and inspire trust.
  • Exhibitions and events: attract consumers and peers with social gatherings that address their likes and interests. Display your best products and services or enhance your event with compelling exhibits.

Despite the online clichés stating that this is one of the fastest growing ancillary business models for hoteliers, MICE is a traditional revenue avenue. All top-tier hotels and resorts offer meetings, conferences, and event spaces. However, the "I" for incentive" does not really fit because it depends on an employer's resources, not the hotel's availability. Nevertheless, since it is an industry norm, the "I" stands as is.

And here's the best part about MICE: it boosts a hotel's revenue in and off-season without dependence on room occupancy. In fact, 54% of all business trips are MICE trips, and MICE travellers spend more than leisure travellers. Hoteliers ignoring these statistics may lose highly lucrative ancillary revenue opportunities.

Maximizing MICE Revenue for Hoteliers

Although a niche hospitality market, MICE is essential in the modern work culture. It provides a win-win scenario for hoteliers and other businesses: hoteliers and venue owners gain ancillary revenues while enterprises benefit from networking. According to some surveys, MICE can generate over 50% of a hotel's revenue. Also, the global MICE industry will likely reach $1,619.3 billion by 2028, despite the negative impact of the abrupt rise of the COVID-19 pandemic.

For successful MICE strategies, a hotel must meet customer requirements and expectations. As a result, tailored-made MICE services have been an industry norm for over three decades. As the "Global MICE Market" (2022-2028) report highlights, 85% of US meetings occur in lodging venues, generating more than 275 million in revenue per room night annually.

MICE guests come from various industries, including banking, real estate development and construction, retail and fashion, agriculture, technology, IT and, pharmaceuticals. To attract these business clients, hotels must implement or continue improving year-round MICE services.

To make the most of MICE opportunities, hoteliers must invest in technology and human talent (like event organizers, photographers, tech support, waitstaff and, concierges.).

MICE industry personnel must have strong communication, organization, and technical skills. In addition, creativity, and the ability to work under pressure are valuable MICE staff capabilities. You can also expect them to be patient, emphatic, well organized, and able to work efficiently under pressure.

Hoteliers may hire MICE staff in-house or retain the services of a destination management company (DMC) as needed. Their responsibilities cover a full range of customer service duties, from meet and greet to destination-specific experiences and activities.

Besides charging rates for event venues and services, hoteliers can maximize revenues by offering preferential accommodation rates (rooms) for MICE customers. Furthermore, hotels with additional facilities (wellness, business lounges, restaurants, bars, etc.) can entice MICE guests with special prices and packages, too.

Hotels providing a mix of business and leisure (bleisure) services are more sought-after than those that limit their offerings to traditional (space, tech support, and catering) services.

In conclusion, Thinking outside the box will prove lucrative and beneficial in such scenarios. Besides boosting revenues, hotels will also gain positive feedback from their MICE patrons, increasing their reputation scores and brand value.

Moreover, to maximize revenues, hoteliers must maximize their marketing and advertising efforts to reach MICE customers on all channels: email, social media, search engines and, newspapers. Therefore, smart platforms like Book a Space are essential: they are specifically designed to offer meeting and event spaces of diverse sizes. They also come equipped with technology and other amenities for business use. Another advantage is that Book a Space allows users the flexibility of renting a venue only for the timeframe they need it: hourly, daily, and so on. Basically, MICE customers get what they need, and hoteliers advertise their meetings and events spaces at very advantageous rates.