In 2019-2020, the Russian Convention Bureau cooperated with ENITED Business Events (Austria) and Roscongress Foundation to start working on the strategy of promoting Russia as a favorable place for business events, which is expected to become the foundation of RCB activities on the international market. The main goal was to determine key directions for working with international associations and more effective promotion of various regions of the country, considering the expectations that foreign audiences have.
The presentation of all the major parameters of the strategy and the discussion with developers and invited experts took place on the online platform of DATA FORUM, the technical partner of the project. The Russian Convention Bureau was represented by its Director, Alexey Kalachev, foreign experts include Ivo Franschitz, Managing Director and Owner of ENITED Business Events and Henrik von Arnold, Senior Consultant of ENITED Business Events. The discussion was also attended by Alexander Porodnov, CEO of ANO ‘Investment Promotion Agency of the Sverdlovsk Region’, and Pavel Mayorov, CEO of Krasnodar Region Development Corporation NJSC. The session was moderated by Timofey Okroev, CEO of the Russian Translation Company.
As part of the strategy to promote Russia on the international market, the main messages were defined as follows:
• One voice & One message
The main mission, goals and objectives of the Russian Convention Bureau includes creating and promoting the unified brand of Russia within the framework of any marketing activities of any player (city of region) on the market of international business events.
• A network of regions
Through the Russian Convention Bureau Russia will create a network of strong cities/regions, with the necessary support at the local level and readiness to cooperate for promotion of the unique proposal of the region at the international market of business events.
• Creating results
Considering the level and scale of the tasks the destination of such size as Russia faces, one of the key factors is availability of resources, first and foremost human resources.
International experts say that Russia is a relatively new and interesting player on the international event market. Many customers are currently looking for “unexplored destinations” and new opportunities for holding events. Customers have also reacted positively to the key message used by the Russian Convention Bureau in its communications on the international market: RUSSIA OPEN TO THE WORLD. One of the main tasks for the RCB and members of the Association for the next several years is to “breathe life” into this slogan.
The document discusses in detail the target audiences in terms of geographical regions, and different spheres of activity as well as formats and tools of working with them. The document provides assessment of competitors and discuses key advantages of the country on the global market of business events, which include tremendous diversity and event potential of different regions, developed infrastructure, availability of scientific and technical potential for interaction with foreign science associations.
Considering the scale and the geographic diversity of the country, the strategy focused on the regions. Three regions of Russia – Svedlovsk, Krasnodar and Irkutsk Regions were used for assessment and analysis and provided recommendations on future development of these destinations on the event market.
According to Pavel Mayorov, CEO of Krasnodar Region Development Corporation NJSC, regions need to come together to communicate their advantages within the same unified message, which would be more successful in the part of promotion on the international arena.
Alexander Porodnov, CEO of ANO ‘Investment Promotion Agency of the Sverdlovsk Region’, said that in his opinion it was necessary to promote Russia and its regions on the international market as a destination for business events, and that the strategy would be used in their work by all means. “We are hoping to continue working closely with international experts, our colleagues from other regions and the Russian Convention Bureau,” he said.
RCB Director Alexey Kalachev noted that in 2019 Russia took the 35th position in the international rating of ICCA (International Congress and Conference Association), which was presented on May 12. This result is 7 places higher than in 2018, when Russia took the 42nd place in the rating. Russia ranked among top 20 European nations in the same rating. To achieve still higher results, Russia will need to develop and promote its brand actively, using all the tools available on the external and internal market. “The positive dynamic allows us to conclude that the Russian event industry is developing fast, and Russian destinations help improve Russia’s positions on the international event market,” Alexey Kalachev commented.