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A day at the Conference & Hospitality Show in Leeds

29th March 2011

A day at the Conference & Hospitality Show in Leeds

A day at the Conference & Hospitality Show in Leeds

It was my first time at the fantastically organised Conference & Hospitality Show that is now in its 3rd year and becoming a major draw for businesses working in the conference and hospitality sector. I was invited to deliver a seminar focused on good practice and highlighting some innovative use of [intlink id=”46″ type=”page”]social media[/intlink] by businesses in the sector and provided with a stand in the exhibitors hall so I could get the most out of the day.

We’ve been working with Emma at Event Management 360 to develop the shows digital footprint and build in key social media channels that will help promote the event to a wider audience and provide a hub for rich media content that can maintain buzz in the build up to next year’s event.

Emma Cartmell and her team ran a great show, being an ‘newby’, I was well looked after and enjoyed meeting loads of people manning very different stands around the hall. I rolled up with our newly branded stand and some marketing material and set about getting organised.

Throughout the day there was a steady stream of visitors and I met some great people like the guys from Demon Wheelers (New Twitter friends @DemonWheelers). I also made some useful contacts and met some potential new clients.

My seminar was a whistle stop tour of social media and some very different businesses, some large, some small that are being very smart and clearly driven to be a part of their community.

Notable cases studies were Coupa Cafe in Palo Alto, that came up with a ‘whisper campaign’ using Twitter and Facebook. The idea was simple, the best are, if you went into the cafe and used the word ‘Whisper’ you could get a free mocha. It’s the kind of campaign that shines for me. It gets people talking positively about the cafe, and they get a free coffee for joining in. To offer a contrast I also discussed the launch of The Harry Potter theme park in Orlando. With $millions to spend on the launch the VP of media decided to invite 7 of the most committed HP bloggers to a secret webcast at midnight. During the webcast they were given a taste of what the attraction would have to offer fans. Those 7 blogged about it, which in turn was picked up by their follower and the mainstream media. They believed the message reach approx. 350 million in 24 hours. Not bad and bucked the trend of huge marketing budgets for launching new products.

The remainder of the day was spent talking to exhibitors and visitors and topped off at 4pm by some guys for New Zealand who invited us all to join the Maori Haka! I took the photo (Sorry for the quality I was doing the haka at the time.) and with that ended the day in Leeds.

By Declan Metcalfe, Marketing Director.

Here are some photos from the day.

[flickr-gallery mode=”photoset” photoset=”72157626213972591″]

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