The Brisbane Marketing Convention Bureau has generated 29 leads with the potential for a combined economic impact upwards of $30 million following the G20 Leaders Summit.
General Manager, Conventions and Business Events, Rob Nelson said successfully hosting the G20 had enhanced Brisbane’s reputation as a city capable of hosting major events to the highest international standards.
“There is no doubt the G20 was a game-changer for Brisbane as a business events destination,” Mr Nelson said at AIME 2015.
“The G20 was truly a once-in-a-generation chance to focus the world’s attention on our city.”
The Convention Bureau’s involvement in the Brisbane Global Cafe, a key lead-in event for the summit, opened new doors through which to seek out new business events for the city.
“The Global Cafe focussed on five key global issues and challenges, attracting 80 high-calibre speakers which included leading researchers and senior business figures from around the world and within Australia,” Mr Nelson said.
“Since the event the Bureau has worked hard to further develop the relationships and networks formed during that week to really firm up a case for Brisbane as a brilliant business events destination.
“For instance, the Convention Bureau co-ordinated the “Improving Human Life” theme of the conference and the legacy of this for us has been pure gold.
“As you may know, Brisbane scientists like the incredible Professor Ian Fraser have been responsible for some amazing breakthroughs and the Improving Human Life theme enabled us to build on the reputation of Brisbane as a research centre of excellence.
“Our engagement with local and international research institutions both in sourcing speakers for this theme and co-ordinating debate on other topics at the Global Cafe created a fantastic climate for future collaboration.
“Specifically, our strategy post-Global Cafe has been to secure business events leads utilising these connections.
“We continue to engage with this network.”
Mr Nelson said another important legacy of the G20 was the development of the Brisbane Welcomes the World program, also delivered by Brisbane Marketing.
“An extension of the well-regarded Greeters program, Brisbane Welcomes the World is a destination welcoming and way-finding program that builds on Brisbane’s reputation as one of the friendliest cities in the world,” said Mr Nelson.
“The program is centred on providing visitors with a personal connection to the city, connecting them with events, culture and stories that will be remembered and cherished for years to come.
“Ahead of the G20, anyone within the local tourism industry who played a role in welcoming and hosting visitors was encouraged to take part in the first phase of the program.
“Brisbane Welcomes the World equipped the service industry with the sort of information and training they needed to answer visitor questions thoughtfully and accurately, provide useful local tips and pass on Brisbane’s stories.
“The program was enthusiastically embraced by more than 2000 participants who worked in hotels, venues, transport, events, attractions, retail, restaurants, cafes and bars. It also included G20 Taskforce staff.
“It truly was an army of well-prepared Brisbane hosts which greeted World Leaders, delegates and media last November.
“The beauty of the Brisbane Welcomes the World program is that it can be tailored to various industries and is now available to conference staff and volunteers as an exclusive extra, personal service for delegates.”
The first example of this being utilised for business events saw the pre-event training of volunteers for the 29th International Horticultural Congress, staged in Brisbane last year.
“They received detailed and insightful information about significant horticultural and botanic features of Brisbane along with general facts about the city, its lifestyle, culture and varied attractions,” said Mr Nelson.
“This ensured delegates received personalised hospitality and a customised approach to their needs.
“It also left them with memories of Brisbane we hope they will cherish and ideally, a real desire to come back again and again.”