Thailand will embark on an “aggressive” digital strategy to drive more inbound MICE business this year.
The Thailand Convention & Exhibition Bureau (TCEB) revealed its plans at an event in Bangkok on Thursday, with key initiatives including the development of a new Thai MICE website and the creation of a new mobile app for event organisers and MICE visitors.
The bureau is also partnering with Thailand’s Department of International Trade Promotion (DITP), the Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT), Thai Airways and Visa to launch a promotional campaign entitled ‘Spice Up Your Business Agenda’, which is aimed at driving more visitor numbers and higher spending from international visitors.
“This year TCEB aims to leverage online marketing promotion through three key initiatives,” said Nopparat Maythaveekulchai, president of TCEB. “One of the key campaigns in 2015 includes the second edition of ‘Spice Up Your Business Agenda’… [which is] aimed at attracting high quality MICE travellers to experience the strength of Thailand’s MICE industry.
“Special privileges include 50% discount on accommodation, car rental, airport transfer and golf course fees. Moreover we are introducing the additional ‘Meeting Package’ programme covering meeting rooms, venues and accommodation, and the ‘Rejuvenation Package’ programme to corporate meetings delegates, exhibition visitors and Visa commercial cardholders in Thailand,” he added.
The new MICE website will be available in eight languages – Thai, English, Chinese, Japanese, Korean, Bahasa Indonesian, Russian and Vietnamese – and the TCEB apps will be available for smartphone and tablet devices.
In addition, TCEB said it is in the process of developing new online sales and marketing tools and digital sales kits to promote Thailand’s MICE industry, and it will also embark on a series of online promotional campaigns throughout the year.
“Online marketing is crucial to the development of Thailand’s MICE industry because of our target audiences in every corner of the globe,” Nopprarat said. “Through the effective use of online marketing, TCEB will be able to communicate with stakeholders in real time, while encouraging engagement among TCEB, Thai MICE entrepreneurs and target audiences.”
Thailand is targeting almost 1.04 million MICE visitors this year, generating THB106.78 billion (US$3.26bn) for the Thai economy. This would represent approximately 4% of Thailand’s total targeted tourism arrivals for 2015, and almost 8% of revenues.