ITB is still on, now virtually
Friday, 6th March 2020
Source : ITB Berlin 2020 | 4Hoteliers ITB News - Marketing

New itb platform launches today: Networking, industry news and the ITB Virtual Convention, online now and open to everyone, an English-language 365-day platform for networking and content and ITB Virtual Convention from 5 to 11 March 2020 with more than 20 exclusive live streams and videos on demand.

Despite its cancellation this year, ITB is offering digital services 365 days a year by launching itb.com. The World’s Leading Travel Trade Show is establishing a completely new networking platform for the world’s travel industry. This global website spans a bridge between real-life meetings and digital networking, and features innovative tools for business, networking and exclusive content. ”In these very difficult times the tourism industry needs ITB more than ever“, said Dr. Martin Buck, Senior Vice President, Travel+Logistics, Messe Berlin GmbH.

That is why, at the forward-looking events of the ITB Virtual Convention, leading speakers from ITB will be discussing how the world’s travel industry can harness intelligent strategies to make sure it remains future-proof even in a challenging environment. In the wake of the latest developments, discussions on how the industry can deal with the coronavirus will play a key role. Between 5 and 11 March 2020 viewers can follow more than 20 exclusive live streams and videos in English and German, some in real time, some time-shifted, on itb.com. Afterwards, they will be made available as videos on demand.

”By launching this new website we are establishing a key platform and travel network which has no parallel and which can be made use of in every market around the world. The aim is to ensure business, content and networking availability 365 days a year. We also want to provide easy access for newcomers to the industry. This underscores our year-round leading international standing in terms of the market and opinions and consolidates the position of our USPs, contacts and content“, Dr. Martin Buck added.

Networking made easy – the new Travel Network of the B2B travel industry

The AI-based Travel Network is a self-teaching system which continually offers users relevant travel industry contact information. All registered attendees at ITB Berlin 2020 may access the Travel Network, i.e. trade visitors, convention participants, exhibitors and representatives of the media who have acquired a personalized ticket from the ITB ticket shop. Shortly after its launch the network is already well subscribed.

Numerous stakeholders have already registered. These had previously received a personal invitation by email prior to the original opening date of the show. Those who had not previously planned to visit the show in Berlin can also register now. Travel Network users can set up a profile, match interests, be contacted and can network. They can also follow other users, exchange contact details, chat and set up appointments. ‘Virtual rooms’ are being made available online where users can hold meetings which they had scheduled prior to ITB Berlin 2020. A video link enables face-to-face meetings – it is also possible to communicate via an audio link only. Under ‘Insights’ and ’News’, itb.com has the latest news from the World Travel Trends Report and ITB Berlin News(www.bit.ly/3aptXly), the official Show Daily of the event – which this year will be a weekly edition.

Virtual ITB Convention: outstanding sessions on up-to-the-minute topics

The streaming and video programme will be updated regularly over the next few days in order to provide additional content. Details and updates are available from ITB.com at any time.

Nils Müller, CEO of TrendOne, will hold his keynote speech originally scheduled for the ITB Convention on the Top 8 Trends for Tourism & Travel, asking “Which trends, technologies and developments do you need to know and how to combine in order to be successful in the future?”

In another keynote speech, Eric La Bonnardière, co-founder of Evaneos, will address the topic of overtourism and how local tour operators can deal with this phenomenon. At the panels of the Hospitality Tech Forum powered by the Hospitality Industry Club, experts will take a look at revenue management, sustainability in the hospitality industry and the future of online distribution. Sessions featuring high-ranking experts will dwell on topics such as establishing and restructuring brands as well as ‘Hospitality 2025’.

At the new Data Talks originally scheduled for the ITB eTravel World, topic headings will include ’Highly Recommended – Best Practice On Personalization‘ and ’Multi-Platform Network in Travel – Digital Enablers and Travel of the Future’. Other sessions will incorporate a Berlin panel discussion featuring representatives of bookingkit and VisitBerlin, who will be asking ”What drives the Industry in 2020?”

The following events from the ITB Berlin Convention are also taking place: Sharry Sun of Travelzoo will present the eagerly awaited empirical study on ’Global luxury customers and sustainability’, which the company carried out together with ITB Berlin. This session will be streamed live from the CubeClub. Caroline Bremner of Euromonitor will talk about ’The Future of the tourism industry’ and address the disruptive challenges facing the industry, including overtourism, climate change and insolvencies as in the recent case of Thomas Cook. The day after, her lecture will also be available in English. Based on around 500,000 interviews, the IPK World Travel Monitor® is the world’s largest travel survey. Rolf Freitag, CEO of IPK International, will present the latest forecast figures on global and European travel trends – an indispensable decision-making tool for the entire tourism industry.

Statista will explain how trends are influencing personalisation and individualisation in the eTravel market; one of the sessions will examine the topics ‘Voice Commerce: Selling travel and hotel rooms via Amazon, Alexa and Google Assistant’ and ’Instagram, influencers & co: the underestimated challenge for destinations’.

Throughout the programme, the fascinating contributions of ITB Digital and Tourismuszukunft can be followed online until Friday 6 March. As well as examining how the industry is dealing with the coronavirus, the sessions will look at New Work, AI, blogging and open data.

Recordings will take place in a specially equipped studio on the Berlin Exhibition Grounds, where numerous sessions will be streamed live. Some speakers will also be joining in from remote locations via Skype. Viewers can join in too: under the hashtag #ITBvirtualcon they can exchange opinions on the sessions and discuss them on social media.


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