Many of the day-long briefings at the leading annual travel trade event for small- tomedium-sized enterprises were given on board three exclusive yachts moored at the Ocean Marina Pattaya, venue of the TTM+2018.
This allowed the media to get a first-hand look at the interiors of deluxe, multi-million dollar yachts which are moored at the marina. The yachts are available for daily or overnight cruises and charters by well-heeled clientele celebrating special occasions; such as, honeymoons, weddings and anniversaries.
The personalised briefings were in addition to the general briefing given at the start of the three-day TTM+2018.
Tanes Petsuwan, TAT Deputy Governor for Marketing Communications, said, “Media briefings are a very important component of the TTM+ because they allow both the foreign and local media to better understand the context of our marketing strategies and also expose them to the fascinating new products and attractions emerging all over Thailand.
“As this is the first time we are holding the TTM at a marina, we thought it would be a good idea to also hold some of the briefings on the yachts. This certainly gave a new twist to the content of the briefings themselves.”
The personalised, tailor-made briefings of 20 minutes each allowed the TAT’s regional directors responsible for the various geographical markets to interact personally with the visiting journalists. At the same time, journalists got a chance to ask specific questions of direct relevance to their respective markets, and hence produce better story-lines.
Mr Tanes added, “All travel trade shows are facing major changes in the way they are structured and targetted. This year, we shifted the focus for the first time to a niche-market theme, ‘Million Shades of Romance,’ so it was decided to shift the focus of the media briefings accordingly, too.”
He said the TAT was impressed by the depth and quality of the questions.
“We were asked everything from the treatment of animals to new infrastructure projects to garbage disposal to opening up of secondary cities and new airline connections. There is no doubt a sea of change occurring in the way travel journalists report on developments, and not just from a marketing angle.”
He said TAT also benefitted from access to dipstick market research as reflected in the content of the questions.
“These are all clearly issues of importance to the travel and tourism industry at large. We will be taking cognisance of them in our annual marketing planning meetings for 2019 due to be held in early July.”
This year’s edition of Thailand’s largest annual trade show marks its return to Pattaya for the first time since 2001 when the event was expanded to include the Greater Mekong Sub region (GMS) countries. This is part of the TAT’s strategy focus shift from mass tourism to niche markets that also endeavours to attract more high-spending, long-staying travellers.
TAT expects 300 international buyers from over 60 countries to attend who will be joined by 300 Thai sellers. Preference was given to buyers specialising in luxury, honeymoon, weddings and romantic holidays.
Pre and post tours will focus on Rayong, Chanthaburi and Trat provinces and the neighbouring GMS country of Cambodia, which borders Trat province and is easily accessible by both land and sea.