B2B events in Mexico and Brazil strengthen ties and create opportunities for future tourism growth.
Despite a business world increasingly reliant on Skype conference calls and Google Hangouts, there is lasting value in face-to-face events. The Canadian Tourism Commission (CTC) and its industry partners have just wrapped up two major B2B events in the emerging tourism markets of Mexico and Brazil.
Conozca Canadá ran Aug. 26-28 at the W Hotel in Mexico City. Here, 18 Canadian businesses showcased their latest tourism experiences to 20 Mexican buyers plus 54 media. The tradeshow kept its new format, which proved successful in 2012. Instead of 15-minute one-to-one meetings, buyers and sellers mingled at themed workshops picking up an overview of Mexican market trends as well as viewing new products and offers from Canadian provinces.
The Canada a Voces 2013 awards and dinner maintained the upbeat tone of the workshops. Journalists who produced top media coverage in the past 12 months in various formats (photos, online, radio and TV) were duly honoured along with the best tour operator of the year.
The B2B event concluded with a day devoted to the media, built around workshops, a panel discussion on Mexican media culture and CTC’s global marketing strategy conference over lunch. The Canadian industry attendees were delighted to furnish local travel, lifestyle and culinary media with pages of fresh story ideas.
CTC’s principal partner in Mexico City for this year’s Conozca was Tourisme Québec.
The week before, Showcase Canada Brazil took the limelight at the Hotel Tivoli, São Paulo. This two-day intense B2B event enabled 26 Canadian industry sellers to build business for the future with 38 Brazilian buyers and 30 media. The first day centred on briefing sessions for buyers and sellers, touching on hot topics such as the online consumer environment, the latest news on the visa process and a Brazil market update from Siobhan Chretien, CTC regional managing director, Emerging Markets. A CTC-hosted dinner at the famous Figueira Rubayat restaurant allowed attendees to take a breather and network in a more relaxed setting.
Day two saw morning-to-evening one-to-one appointments between Canadian industry reps and Brazilian buyers and media, with a cocktail evening closing the Showcase. CTC and nine destination marketing partners offered one final educational treat afterwards for travel agents in São Paulo and Rio de Janeiro: extra training sessions to help them sell Canada even more effectively.