Buyers at this year’s INDABA won’t have to walk the exhibition flat to get an excellent sense of the extent and variety of excellent tourism experiences on offer in South Africa.
For the first time ever, a series of speed marketing sessions will give product owners, specialising in adventure, responsible tourism and culture and heritage, a unique platform to interact with interested buyers.
During INDABA 2012 South African Tourism’s global product team will host a series of speed marketing sessions enabling 25 product owners in each of the following categories: adventure, responsible tourism, and culture and heritage, to showcase their offerings to more than 200 interested buyers.
“Our research tells us that the global traveller is looking for more variety in their travel experience, something that South Africa is certainly not lacking,” said SAT chief marketing officer Roshene Singh.
“However, with a busy INDABA schedule and more than 2000 exhibitors to see, it is not always easy for buyers to track down the best of what South Africa has to offer. The themes have been chosen based on solid consumer research in key markets.
“To make it easier we have identified three areas at this year’s INDABA where South Africa really sets itself apart – adventure, responsible tourism and culture and heritage.
“We have set up speed marketing sessions to, in a short time, give buyers the chance to get to know the people behind South Africa’s tourism industry and be introduced to some of the products that can make a trip to South Africa truly extraordinary,” explained Singh.
Named the Shongololo Sessions, because they have been designed to give local businesses legs (something that the shongololo is literally in no short supply of), they provide the perfect opportunity for partnerships to begin and for working relationships to form.
Speakers will each be given five minutes to address more than 200 buyers about the journey their business has taken, its unique components that make it distinctive and how these will add value to packages and itineraries.
Each session will begin with a short overview by an industry expert, responsible tourism by Fair Trade in Tourism’s Katarina Mancama, adventure by Dirty Boots’ Johan Radcliff, and a special not to be missed session on culture and heritage by South African musical legend Johnny Clegg.
“While speed marketing may be new at Indaba it is not new for South African Tourism.
“We have used it successfully over the last couple of years to give inbound tour operators the opportunity to learn more about what lesser visited areas in the country have to offer,” added Singh.
Last year South Africa hosted seven speed marketing sessions in the Western Cape, KwaZulu Natal, North West, Gauteng, Free State and Limpopo, attracting a total of 102 tour operators and 280 South African products.