The Booming Sunshine State
INCENTIVE MAGAZINE – APR 2018

“Recent revitalization projects have produced many excellent group hotels including the Hyatt Regency Clearwater Beach, Sandpearl Resort, the Opal Sands Resort, Clearwater Beach, which opened 2016, and the Wyndham Grand Clearwater Beach, which opened 2017.”

– Mike May

The Booming Sunshine State
INCENTIVE MAGAZINE – APR 2018

“Recent revitalization projects have produced many excellent group hotels including the Hyatt Regency Clearwater Beach, Sandpearl Resort, the Opal Sands Resort, Clearwater Beach, which opened 2016, and the Wyndham Grand Clearwater Beach, which opened 2017.”

– Mike May

Industry Leaders Point to Reasons for Optimism
INCENTIVE MAGAZINE – MAR 2018

Mike May cited the strong GDP and roaring stock market of 2017 as positive economic indicators, and also pointed to the Incentive Research Foundation’s Net Optimism Score…

“The score in the fall was 44,” he said. “So the people who were positive were 44 percent higher than those who were negative.”

Industry Leaders Point to Reasons for Optimism
INCENTIVE MAGAZINE – MAR 2018

Mike May cited the strong GDP and roaring stock market of 2017 as positive economic indicators, and also pointed to the Incentive Research Foundation’s Net Optimism Score…

“The score in the fall was 44,” he said. “So the people who were positive were 44 percent higher than those who were negative.”

Meet GDP’s 2017 Rising Star: Brie Richards
GLOBAL DMC PARTNERS – FEB 2018

The recipient of the 2017 Global DMC Partners Rising Star award due to her passion for the industry and her contributions to GDP’s success through her participation on our Customer Advisory Board.  We asked Brie for her perspective and insights on the industry, such as challenges, trends, travel tips – and more!

Meet GDP’s 2017 Rising Star: Brie Richards
GLOBAL DMC PARTNERS – FEB 2018

The recipient of the 2017 Global DMC Partners Rising Star award due to her passion for the industry and her contributions to GDP’s success through her participation on our Customer Advisory Board.  We asked Brie for her perspective and insights on the industry, such as challenges, trends, travel tips – and more!

Why Corporate Retreats are Trending Again
LUXURY RETREATS – FEB 2018

“Recently we’ve seen a growth in cooking classes, especially those that use the spices and flavors of that local destination. Or instead of dinners at a local restaurant, we’ll see dinners at a private home hosted by the family that lives there. People are looking for activities that tap into what you can only do in that market.”

– Mike May

Why Corporate Retreats are Trending Again
LUXURY RETREATS – FEB 2018

“Recently we’ve seen a growth in cooking classes, especially those that use the spices and flavors of that local destination. Or instead of dinners at a local restaurant, we’ll see dinners at a private home hosted by the family that lives there. People are looking for activities that tap into what you can only do in that market.”

– Mike May

Mike May Sought by Press for an Opinion on Marriott
INCENTIVE MAGAZINE – JAN 2018

May added that at the end of the day, decisions would be based on what is “the right recommendation for the client,” regardless of commission structure.

“When they take a deep breath, they will be most influenced by what’s the right recommendation.”

– Mike May

Mike May Sought by Press for an Opinion on Marriott
INCENTIVE MAGAZINE – JAN 2018

May added that at the end of the day, decisions would be based on what is “the right recommendation for the client,” regardless of commission structure.

“When they take a deep breath, they will be most influenced by what’s the right recommendation.”

– Mike May

Spear One Rebrands as Brightspot
INCENTIVE MAGAZINE – NOV 2017

“We strive to make our clients’ jobs easier and make them look good. We want to be the bright spot to our client contact and make their program a bright spot in their company.”

– Mike May

Spear One Rebrands as Brightspot
INCENTIVE MAGAZINE – NOV 2017

“We strive to make our clients’ jobs easier and make them look good. We want to be the bright spot to our client contact and make their program a bright spot in their company.”

– Mike May

Top Incentive Destinations in the World
SUCCESSFUL MEETINGS – OCT 2017

“As for Dubrovnik, the activities, history, nature, and food-and-wine culture make it a gem on the Adriatic… the favorable exchange rate and VAT refunds, along with the “podium power cachet” of major European cities such as London, Paris, Rome, and Barcelona, is bringing them back to favor with U.S. groups… for Beijing, try topping an excursion to the Great Wall and a private dinner in the Ancestral Temple courtyard in the Forbidden City.”

– Mike May

Top Incentive Destinations in the World
SUCCESSFUL MEETINGS – OCT 2017

“As for Dubrovnik, the activities, history, nature, and food-and-wine culture make it a gem on the Adriatic… the favorable exchange rate and VAT refunds, along with the “podium power cachet” of major European cities such as London, Paris, Rome, and Barcelona, is bringing them back to favor with U.S. groups… for Beijing, try topping an excursion to the Great Wall and a private dinner in the Ancestral Temple courtyard in the Forbidden City.”

– Mike May

Florida’s West Coast
SUCCESSFUL MEETINGS – SEP 2017

“Recent revitalization projects have produced many excellent group hotels including the Hyatt Regency Clearwater Beach, Sandpearl Resort, the Opal Sands Resort, Clearwater Beach, and the Wyndham Grand Clearwater Beach.”

– Mike May

Florida’s West Coast 
SUCCESSFUL MEETINGS – SEP 2017

“Recent revitalization projects have produced many excellent group hotels including the Hyatt Regency Clearwater Beach, Sandpearl Resort, the Opal Sands Resort, Clearwater Beach, and the Wyndham Grand Clearwater Beach.”

– Mike May

Personality Plus – Only a Short Drive
SALES & MARKETING MANAGEMENT – SEP 2017

May offers his thoughts on why many of his clients are choosing to meet in (regional) cities.

“Personality – second-tier cities have focused their brand positioning.  Curiosity – an unvisited destination becomes an attendance draw.  Plus: authentic local experiences, being the “big fish,” and drive-to allows more attendees to join.”

– Mike May

Personality Plus – Only a Short Drive
SALES & MARKETING MANAGEMENT – SEP 2017

May offers his thoughts on why many of his clients are choosing to meet in (regional) cities.

“Personality – second-tier cities have focused their brand positioning.  Curiosity – an unvisited destination becomes an attendance draw.  Plus: authentic local experiences, being the “big fish,” and drive-to allows more attendees to join.”

– Mike May

The eRFP: Growing Pains, Remedies, and Preparing for the Future
HOTEL BUSINESS REVIEW – SEP 2017

“The modern bridge that connects hoteliers and meeting planners becomes more overburdened and scrutinized by the day. Understanding the Pain Points… Tips for Improving Your eRFP Experience… Embracing Relationship Building Outside eRFPs…”

– Michael Pisterzi

The eRFP: Growing Pains, Remedies, and Preparing for the Future
HOTEL BUSINESS REVIEW – SEP 2017

“The modern bridge that connects hoteliers and meeting planners becomes more overburdened and scrutinized by the day. Understanding the Pain Points… Tips for Improving Your eRFP Experience… Embracing Relationship Building Outside eRFPs…”

– Michael Pisterzi

New Client Awards and Partners of the Year
GLOBAL DMC PARTNERS – AUG 2017

Brie Richards is awarded the 2017 Rising Star award at Global DMC Partners Connection.

New Client Awards and Partners of the Year
GLOBAL DMC PARTNERS – AUG 2017

Brie Richards is awarded the 2017 Rising Star award at Global DMC Partners Connection.

Las Vegas: What’s New for Meetings
CORPORATE & INCENTIVE TRAVEL – JUL 2017

“Vegas is high energy.  It’s popular for driving attendance and audience anticipation. But attendees might skip part of the meeting and hit the casino floor. Or, they’re bleary-eyed, exhausted and struggle to be fully mentally engaged.”

– Mike May

Las Vegas: What’s New for Meetings
CORPORATE & INCENTIVE TRAVEL – JUL 2017

“Vegas is high energy.  It’s popular for driving attendance and audience anticipation. But attendees might skip part of the meeting and hit the casino floor. Or, they’re bleary-eyed, exhausted and struggle to be fully mentally engaged.”

– Mike May

Cruises Go Full Speed Ahead in Incentive Travel
SUCCESSFUL MEETINGS – MAY 2017

Mike May, president of incentive house Spear One, says that while he is a fan, and some industries like direct sales companies love them, “our clients either always cruise or never cruise. We never see them switch.”

Cruises Go Full Speed Ahead in Incentive Travel
SUCCESSFUL MEETINGS – MAY 2017

Mike May, president of incentive house Spear One, says that while he is a fan, and some industries like direct sales companies love them, “our clients either always cruise or never cruise. We never see them switch.”

Next Best Thing to Being There
MEETINGS TODAY – APR 2017

“We use Cvent as our online sourcing tool because it allows us to identify and search a variety of properties throughout the world for our clients.”

– Genny Castleberry

Next Best Thing to Being There
MEETINGS TODAY – APR 2017

“We use Cvent as our online sourcing tool because it allows us to identify and search a variety of properties throughout the world for our clients.”

– Genny Castleberry

Motivation Masters Award Finalists: CSR
INCENTIVE – DEC 2016

Spear One designed on behalf of Allen, TX-based Frontier Communications the Great Frontier Donate, a customer-referral incentive with a feel-good corporate social responsibility twist.

Hits Away
INCENTIVE – OCT 2016

“While Callaway and TaylorMade are clearly market leaders in golf clubs, Cobra and PING are near the top too… Scotty Cameron putters are still huge… Titleist is the number one ball in golf.”

– Kara Hoover

Assoc. Planners Need to Hammer Down a Theme
MEETINGS TODAY – AUG 2016

“Crafting a strong message for a meeting, especially an annual association conference where attendance is not mandatory, is also crucial for motivating people to come.”

– Mike May

Eye-Opening Sunglass Options
INCENTIVE MAGAZINE – AUG 2016

“Costa is up-and-coming with the younger age demographic living active lifestyles.”

– Kara Hoover

Cooking Up Luxury Awards
INCENTIVE – AUG 2016

“Cookware is our highest redeem category, with 16% of all our redemptions… Think stone casserole dishes from Le Creuset or slow cookers from Cuisinart.”

– Kara Hoover

Motivating Millenials
MEETINGS TODAY – JUL 2016

“All-inclusive properties are a very attractive option for this age group.  Millennials don’t want to feel like they have to take out their wallet to pay for ‘overpriced’ drinks.”

-Kelly Parisi

Las Vegas: The Meeting Planner’s Best Friend
CORPORATE & INCENTIVE TRAVEL – MAY 2016

“For high-end clients, we are looking at Wynn, Encore, Bellagio, Venetian, Four Seasons, etc… Another consideration is podium power. For incentive travel programs, where we are trying to motivate participants to earn a trip, we might consider a new or trendy property like the Cosmopolitan.”

Dollar and Sense
SUCCESSFUL MEETINGS – MAR 2016

“We’ve definitely seen an increased interest in European locations.  We’ve got something that’s operating in Germany this month.  We’ve got other clients looking at Italy, another at Spain, and others have dipped their toe in the water about Ireland and the U.K.”

– Mike May

Meeting and Incentive Firms React to Zika Virus
SUCCESSFUL MEETINGS –
FEB 2016

“We are advising our clients what to be aware of the CDC statements… It seems every three years over the last decade some story of disease breaks out, and our reaction far exceeds what it should have been when we look back,”

– Mike May

What’s the Spend: Budget Allocation
SUCCESSFUL MEETINGS – DEC 2015

“All-inclusives are very attractive – no hidden fees or surprises… Many DMCs offer set programs with many inclusions for a fixed cost… Using a shipping broker can be costly, but it’s a must.”

– Genny Castleberry

Incentive Travel Gets Personal
SMART MEETINGS – OCT 2015

Many travelers say they love to seek authentic experiences in the local culture… “Something that moves beyond ziplines and catamarans to something that’s authentic to that destination.”

– Mike May

Free Stuff: Awesome Downloadables for Planners
SUCCESSFUL MEETINGS – SEP 2015

Meeting planners created this guide to all-inclusive resorts. Find out which resort incorporates wine into its spa treatments, a beach that’s beautiful but not swimmable, the most exquisite food in Mexico, …

All-Inclusive Resorts Are Game Changers
SMART MEETINGS – AUG 2015

“The Westin Playa Conchal in Costa Rica reminded me of Ritz-Carlton quality and offered an impressive selection.”

– Julie Blank

Insights into Incentives in Hawaii
INCENTIVE – JUN 2015

“Even if your group has visited Hawaii before, don’t assume they’ve experienced all of Hawaii,  We recommend that clients include Hawaii in their destination cycle and alternate every two or three years.”

– Mike May

What’s Driving Tomorrow’s Incentives? 7 Trends to Watch
MEETINGSNET – JUN 2015

From IRF Incentive Trends panel:  “Last-minute incentive travel planning is front and center… We’re well into a seller’s market, which can cause sticker shock… need for a genuine, localized experiences.”

– Mike May

How Gamification is Engaging Consumers and Developing Brand Awareness
INCENTIVE – MAY 2015

Garza won the happiness game at the IRF Incentive Invitation. He won bragging rights for “VIT” (very important Tweeter). “I’m very competitive, and a game like this connects with me right away.”

– Rudy Garza

Spear One Reviews Caribbean and Mexico All-Inclusive Resorts
MEETINGS & CONVENTIONS – MAR 2015

Meeting and incentive firm Spear One has released an ebook, which provides candid destination-expert reviews and rankings of all-inclusive resorts that handle meetings and incentives.

Monaco Sets the Bar High
INCENTIVE – MAR 2015

“Monaco won out because it is a bucket-list destination… They wanted to set the bar very high, and they did. Monaco was one of those once-in-a-lifetime experiences.”

– Danielle Dillow

Tips on Smart Budgeting Strategy for Decor
MEETINGS FOCUS – SEP 2014

“You can do your own decor by finding less expensive materials… You can find items online or at a local party supply store… Generic themes such as ‘Black and White Night’ or ‘All White Party’ are easy to pull off inexpensively.”

Discover Solutions to Humdrum Soirees
TEXAS MEETINGS & EVENTS – JUN 2014

“Five tips:  make sure the entertainment aligns with the client’s business objective, share testimonials, introduce the act to the client for personal connection, take a chance on something extraordinary, and be prepared to change direction midstream.”

– Michael Butler

IRF Incentive Invitational Breaks Records
INCENTIVE – JUN 2014

“Recent research shows a decline in the reliance on cash incentives,” said Mike May, an IRF trustee and president of Irving, TX-based incentive house Spear One.

– Mike May

Progress with Points-Based Sales Incentives
INCENTIVE – FEB 2014

Working with house Spear One, Siemens created a tiered rewards program… Engagement, loyalty, and motivation levels increased year-over-year, and revenue from the sale of new licenses has more than paid for the program.

Incentive Travel Trends for 2014 & Beyond
MEETINGS & CONVENTIONS – FEB 2014

Guest article.  Planners always want to know what other companies are doing, what’s hot and what’s next. Following are 9 trends for incentive travel programs, based on current research from the Incentive Research Foundation.

– Mike May

Apps: The Content Challenge
MEETINGS & CONVENTIONS – JAN 2014

Guest article.  “we often overlook something with new software — the behind-the-scenes time investment required to provide and fine-tune the data that is needed to do all those cool things.”

– Mike May

Motivation Masters Award – Siemens (Finalist)
INCENTIVE – DEC 2013

Siemens turned to incentive house Spear One to reboot the Siemens Industry Software Partner Rewards Program… The communications improved sales rep participation significantly… New license revenues grew, and engagement, loyalty, and motivation were all up.

Forecast 2014: Meetings Get Back to Business
MEETINGS & CONVENTIONS – DEC 2013

“Sunny destinations like Hawaii remain popular, but resort programs increasingly are cutting group activities to one day from two to allow more unstructured time.”

– Mike May

Communication is the Key to Successful Incentive Programs
MEETINGS & CONVENTIONS – NOV 2013

“When I was asked ‘what can make or break an incentive program?’ – I didn’t have to consider it for long. The answer is weak communication, and we’ve seen it happen in the industry many times.”

– Mike May

Event Design and Entertainment
INSURANCE & FINANCIAL MEETINGS – NOV 2013

“It’s time to bring the outside in and the inside out, such as using elements of nature to decorate a table or using traditionally inside furniture for an outdoor event.  The environment or surroundings are the impact — the décor is just there to enhance.”

– Kelly Parisi

2013 Incentive Roundtable: ROI and Incentives
INCENTIVE – SEP 2013

Every year, Incentive gathers a group of experienced professionals from every sector of motivation, engagement, and incentives to talk about the state of the industry.  Mike May shared his insights.  This is the magazine’s most read story each year.

The Top Incentive Travel Destinations of 2013
INCENTIVE – SEP 2013

Genny Castleberry lists Hawaii, especially Oahu and Hawaii, the Big Island, as one of her firm’s top five domestic incentive destinations… and Napa Valley and San Francisco are two popular domestic destinations.

App, App, and Away: Understanding Planners’ Event App Needs
HOTEL BUSINESS REVIEW – SEP 2013

Guest column with tips for hoteliers working with meeting planners on their event apps.

– Mike May

Spear One Buys Corporate Incentive Travel
INCENTIVE – SEP 2013

“Corporate Incentive Travel has an excellent reputation in the Northeast, and I’m excited to open a Washington, DC office.  The European expertise of Dianne will strengthen our knowledge base and international industry relations.  And, their vertical industry expertise to radio stations, real estate lenders, and technology clients is an attractive complement.”

– Mike May

Mexico Entices
HOTEL BUSINESS REVIEW – SEP 2013

”All-inclusive resorts provide a worry-free scenario for planners and corporations and allow for better control of the program budget.  There are numerous properties with various price points and luxury levels to fit everyone’s needs.”
– Genny Castleberry

Best Places to Work in the Meetings Industry
MEETINGS & CONVENTIONS – APR 2013

How four companies thrive by keeping their employees happy.  Our four choices share some common threads: A strong personality at the top sets a tone for the corporate culture and demonstrates a commitment that employees will want to carry through. Far from ordinary office environments, these companies create a community so special that no one wants to leave.

The Best Ways to Discover the Perfect Destination
CORPORATE & INCENTIVE TRAVEL – MAR 2013

“We discover the meeting type, audience demographics, pattern preference, target dates, desired locations, past meeting history, meeting room and AV requirements, and so on. Taking a little extra discovery time always saves our clients time and money in the long run.”

Spear One Poised to Grow Sales and Employee Count after Merger
DALLAS BUSINESS JOURNAL – FEB 2013

Spear One, an Irving-based company that provides sales incentives, meeting and event planning, prides itself on giving its clients “the power of something extra”…

Spear One Buys Sunbelt Motivation
SUCCESSFUL MEETINGS – JAN 2013

“Mike May is not only a successful entrepreneur but a professional whose business ethics have helped solidify his success.  Spear One has been a respected competitor of Sunbelt’s for a number of years, and with this combination, our merged market strength becomes formidable.”

– Bill Boyd