Crossover Rockstars: Maarten Schram



Every year, Conventa Crossover invites world-renowned meeting planners, marketers, entrepreneurs, and creatives to share their knowledge in Ljubljana, Slovenia. This year won’t be any different –  inspiring individuals who have helped co-create and transform the meetings industry will come together from 26 to 27 August 2021. At the same time, we will be opening the stage to a new generation of young and talented meeting planners and marketers. You will learn from keynote speakers who have successfully transformed their events and are recognized as the pioneers of our new reality.

Joining the 6th Conventa Crossover conference is Maarten Schram, Founder & Managing Director of LiveCom Alliance | European Institute for Live Communication. Before you meet him at Conventa Crossover 2021, we wanted to hear his thoughts on the future of the meetings industry and see what surprises he has in store for us.

Interview with Maarten Schram

Q: What do you think about the theme of this year’s Crossover – The Meetings Industry AC/BC (After Corona/Before Corona)? 

I like the wordplay! A lot of power comes with the iconic band referring too 🙂 Obviously the ‘after’ is more interesting and topical than the ‘before’. Looking forward to talk and hear about future industry vision and ideas.

Q: What is your forecast for the meetings industry in the coming year (2022) and beyond? 

Referring to the European Industry Survey 2020 we need another year for further recovery up to the pre Covid-19 levels (’22 80,2% and ’23 102,5% turnover expectations compared to pre-Covid-19 level).

The good news among all the bad news is, we were able to put a spotlight on our industry.

With a lot of studies we were able to show and proof the huge impact of live communication in our economy and society. The yearly European Industry Survey by LiveCom Alliance is such a study. And we all experienced the loss of face to face contact and live experiences in our lives. Therefore I expect a true revival for live, bringing experience driven communication up to and even among pre-Covid levels soon. 

Q: How do you envision agility and innovation in overcoming the corona crisis? Can you share some examples of best practices? 

Crisis are always a spinning wheel for innovations

A lot of interesting insights on these topics in our survey 🙂 Personally I anticipate agility as a ‘keeper’, due to the fact we experienced a sense of efficiency. The intensity in our business is enormous, so therefore some distance and focus away from the office could work on both ends. At the other hand we know, in case of emotions, complexity and/or creativity we need face to face contact. The element of serendipity when meeting live is irreplaceable. Innovations helped us the move on, even when in a crisis like Covid-19. Crisis are always a spinning wheel for innovations pushing us forward, especially for our industry over the past almost one and a half year.  The examples are endless and familiar I suppose ranging from online meeting tools, various amazing platforms, digital event environments including gamification, AR and VR solutions. Within our industry, and in working (from home) solutions too.

Q: How would you comment on the following statement? “Coronacrisis has shown the need to organise events that are responsible to the environment, the participants and the community as a whole” 

The pandemic taught us once more, reaching your audience (internal, clients or consumers) in an effective way is craftsmanship. Live communication is experience-based, whether it’s about fully live, hybrid or online. That’s our USP. A friend told me once, you are artisans. And that’s so true!

Q: What will you surprise us with at this year’s event? 

Insights from the European Industry Survey 2020; a lot of interesting data produced by our twelve participating associations from all over the continent. And a cautious forecast for the near future. Hopefully, some food for thought. 

About Maarten

Maarten Schram established LiveCom Alliance in 2016 as a non-profit foundation on the belief that the live communication industry deserves a pan-European approach and audience, and would benefit from an overarching dedicated yet independent institution. Maarten thrives the pan-European industry creating a stronger, more sustainable and more interesting playing field by introducing the first pan-European Code of Ethics (2017) and first pan-European Pitch Guidelines (2018). Furthermore, he publishes the European Industry Survey yearly.

Download this year’s Conventa Crossover SPEAKER LINE-UP

Join the 6th Conventa Crossover


The Conventa Crossover conference, intended for event planners, creatives, marketing experts and all those involved in the MICE business in the New Europe region, will be carried out as a hybrid event this year. This means that you can choose to attend the event LIVE or ONLINE. Click the link below to register!


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