The exhibitors and trade visitors of the RDA Group Travel Expo (GTE) 2019 in Friedrichshafen and Cologne were overall satisfied with the respective event. This is the result of this year’s survey among exhibitors and visitors in which about 380 exhibitors and 250 visitors participated. The visitor surveys have been conducted during the respective exhibition in collaboration with Messe Friedrichshafen and Koelnmesse. The exhibitors were requested to give feedback via an online form following the exhibitions.
"The feedback we received from exhibitors and visitors turns out to be as positive as expected and makes us optimistic for 2020," explains Benedikt Esser, RDA President and CEO of RDA Expo GmbH. "We are already working on optimising the exhibition in the interest of all stakeholders in order to be able to build on this year’s success."
Trade visitors: Fulfilled expectations and a high recommendation rate
The product range and information offer met the expectations of on average 78.5 % of the interviewed visitors. Furthermore, 90 % would recommend visiting the RDA GTE to colleagues who do not know the exhibition yet. At both exhibitions, the major part signalled readiness to place orders: Thus, 72 % of visitors in Friedrichshafen said they were using the RDA GTE to place orders and/or arrange options; 11 % had preliminary talks. In Cologne, 73 % of visitors intended to place orders and/or arrange options; 6 % intended to have preliminary talks.
The focus of visitors at both exhibitions was on discovering new offers and maintaining existing business contacts. Therefore, the interviewed visitors spent on average one and a half days at the exhibition. They were primarily interested in holiday, city and study trips. Concerning the visitor structure, it can be noted that on average three quarters of the visitors were tour operators and travel agencies. A special fact about Friedrichshafen: The share of visitors from Switzerland doubled in comparison to the previous year.
The outlook for 2020 is promising: 57 % of the visitors in Friedrichshafen and 61 % of the visitors in Cologne will definitely attending the exhibition again next year, only 1 % respectively 3 % do not plan to visit the exhibition again. Furthermore, the majority of the interviewees is also interested in the exhibition at the respective other location: Thus, half of the visitors in Friedrichshafen intend to visit the RDA GTE in Cologne in 2020. Nearly three quarters of visitors in Cologne intend to visit the RDA GTE 2020 in Friedrichshafen.
Exhibitors: Many talks and professional initial contacts
The exhibitors that took part in the survey registered on average about 30 customer meetings at their booth at both trade fairs – nearly one third thereof were initial contacts. In addition to this, they honoured the quality of the visitors: On average two thirds of the exhibitors in Friedrichshafen and Cologne rated the visitors at their booth as mostly or very professional. Moreover, they noted constant business compared to the previous year. On average, 62 % of this year's exhibitors were satisfied or very satisfied with the results of their talks and the number of closed deals during the exhibition.
The focus of exhibitors at both exhibitions was on developing new customer contacts, intensifying existing business contacts and selling their products and services. Therefore, there were on average 2.6 employees present at their booth. In order to invite visitors to their booth, they were primarily using e-mail, newsletter and telephone marketing. The large majority of exhibitors stated that they definitely plan to exhibit again next year or at least take it into consideration – 86 % in Friedrichshafen, 80 % in Cologne.
"We notice a high quality of visitors, a great willingness to order and a remarkable recommendation rate," says Esser. "We think the satisfaction of visitors is a result of the engagement of the exhibitors and an increased digital marketing: The product depth of package tour operators, the creativity of tourism organisations and the individual group offers of small and specialised hotels have proven themselves to be very successful when combined."