Building connections, building trade
From profiling travel intermediaries to destination training, familiarisation visits to identifying product gaps for strategic interventions, our proactive B2B engagement helps UK suppliers reach international markets at the same time as ensuring international buyers sell more of Britain.
Strengthening relationships and opening access
We work closely with the overseas travel trade to ensure more of Britain is packaged and sold through the travel trade. But it’s also about building strong relationships with industry and strategic partners such as the national boards for Scotland, Wales and London as well as destination management organisations, to strengthen the offer from UK suppliers, helping to make sure they’re market-ready. This activity ranges from creating robust digital tools to in-market events, regional roadshows in the UK, and familiarisation visits to help international trade buyers experience UK tourism products first-hand.
From hosting 300 key international buyers in Britain to training travel agents online and through roadshows, in 2015/16 we brought British tourism businesses and destinations together with operators, agents and media from priority markets to do business whilst showcasing what’s great about Britain. This provided a route to market and helped the overseas travel trade to understand what the country has to offer – so they can package and sell Britain effectively.
We organised eight main events around the world, attended by nearly 400 UK suppliers and more than 400 buyers. We also spread the word at two of the world’s biggest trade exhibitions, taking along 48 UK delegates. Reigniting relationships on the other side of the world, our first sales mission to Australia in 10 years focused on agents and started productive conversations between 19 UK suppliers and 250 travel agents.
Back at home, our flagship B2B event, ExploreGB, built on its inaugural year with a successful second show – this time held in Liverpool. We hosted 300 suppliers and 300 buyers from over 40 markets, who took part in a total of over 30,000 one-to-one meetings. The event featured a gala dinner for 900 influential tourism representatives at Liverpool Cathedral, and visiting buyers enjoyed one of the 15 familiarisation trips organised across Britain to help them gain first-hand insight into the wealth of offers around the regions.
Our commitment to help the UK industry reach international travel trade buyers continued in 2015/16 as we revamped our online trade activity, launching the latest version of the website and supplier directory. Now 23 versions of the website are tailored to specific markets and over 700 British-based tourism organisations are featured in the free-to-register directory, enabling overseas trade to build Britain packages and itineraries. The site has attracted over 67,000 visits from over 140 countries.
Proactively build the range and availability of relevant bookable Britain product
Increase regional spread
Boost commercial sales of Britain in international markets
Improve access of the UK tourism industry to markets around the world