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Considering a secondary market venue? That may be a smart idea! Doing so may deliver a surprisingly great list of features and advantages that many big-market-only event planners (and their attendees) are missing.

Here are several sleek options worth considering when selecting a secondary market venue for your future events:

1. Know your target audience:  understanding your attendees’ demographics, interests, and preferences will help identify secondary markets that best align with their needs and desires. What are their expectations regarding event venues, logistics, and amenities?

2. Explore unique locations:  smaller, lesser-known destinations can open a world of unexpected delights with unique venues and attractions that can add a special touch to the event. Smaller venues may also operate more nimbly and be more focused on providing great customer service.

3. Consider infrastructure and facilities:  evaluate available transportation options, accommodations, and the event venue's capabilities to assure a good fit, especially if attendees are traveling from a wide range of locations. The destination should be able to support the event requirements and provide attendees with smooth, convenient access to facilities.

4. Assess the budget and cost factors:  secondary markets may offer more affordable options compared to major cities.  With increasing budget constraints and the higher costs of primary markets, event planners are shifting their focus to maximize resources while still delivering an exceptional event experience, all within a secondary market.

5. Go local for expertise and support:  collaborating with local event professionals and resources can easily extend your reach into the local market. Use their in-depth knowledge and expertise to help create and navigate a successful event. Local hotels, restaurants, and entertainment options will add value to the event and provide unique, memorable experiences.

6. Create unique experiences and activities: strong attendance has two key elements: (1) valuable content within the conference, and (2) enticing experiences beyond the venue. Consider what memorable activities will entice attendees to enjoy a total experience. The venue or local CVB can easily provide a list of attractions, landmarks, cultural events, and local specialties that will add something magical to your event.

7. Listen and learn: ask for constructive feedback and reviews from previous events held at your chosen destination. The experiences of other event planners is a good way to gauge the success and compatibility of the location with your own event goals.

Bottom line:  secondary market venues can offer exciting and distinctive event opportunities that save costs without sacrificing quality . With a bit of research and a few resources, event planners can easily identify those venues that can cater to their needs and exceed attendees’ expectations.

Grand Wayne Convention Center’s sales and event managers have years of expertise with helping event planners create amazing experiences in and around beautiful downtown Fort Wayne, Indiana. At its core, Grand Wayne Convention Center is dedicated to help guests “Make Good Memories” — it’s how we’ve earned our award-winning reputation among event planners as one of the Midwest’s best event destinations.

Let’s talk! We can help you create an amazing event. Contact one of our Sales Managers and tell us what you have in mind!