Media, travel and meeting industry

In total, the Vienna Tourist Board held around 100 virtual events in 36 markets in 2020 with around 45,000 B2B contacts.

International travel industry

To help stay in contact with key accounts and multipliers in long-distance markets during the coronavirus crisis, the Vienna Tourist Board started a new digital platform: the Virtual Vienna Showroom, which was launched in China in autumn. Over a period of three months, Viennese companies had the opportunity to arrange virtual workshops and interactive product training courses, and take up individual appointments with tour operators as a way to signal their presence and lay firm foundations for the post-crisis era.
Token gifts keep friendships alive: Vienna kept in touch with its key partners in the global travel industry through a series of specifically themed mail campaigns. In one such example, a personalized postcard was sent to international key accounts together with luxe Wiener Seife soap in a move that also drew attention to the fact that the importance of handwashing was established in Vienna by Ignaz Semmelweis.
The Vienna Experts Club International is a customer loyalty program for the global travel industry, under which the Vienna Tourist Board informs representatives of the international tourism industry about Vienna as a destination. Members are acquired all over the world. The Vienna Experts Club International currently has approximately 20,000 members.

International Press

In March 2020, the media team quickly adapted its press strategy to the new market environment, launching its Long Distance Love campaign which put the city’s virtual offerings in the international shop window. When the Giant Ferris Wheel – the symbol of tourism and economic recovery in Vienna – stopped turning on May 29, the media team ensured that this emotional moment was felt all over the world: around 220 online and social media contributions in 15 of our focus markets had a potential reach of more than 3 billion contacts.
In addition, the team was in constant contact with media representatives from above-the-line print and online publications through TV and radio as well as blogs, social media influencers, podcasts and vlogs as it worked to ensure that the level of interest in Vienna would remain high for the time after the pandemic. Correspondingly diverse, the media team's offering included press newsletters tailored to the individual markets, in-depth research briefings on continuously updated topics and individualized story pitching, as well as 4k photo and video material. The Media Management Department played host to selected international journalists in 2020, albeit far fewer than in the past owing to the constraints of the pandemic. In 2020, the team supported a total of 217 media representatives and influencers from 29 countries who visited the city for research purposes. The figurative online editorial reach came to 11.6 billion, a figure which is all the more impressive given the pandemic.

Meeting industry

The main meeting industry get-togethers and other staples of the industry calendar could not take place in 2020, so the Vienna Convention Bureau’s activities during the year focused on maintaining ties to customers through webinars, participation in digital formats and extended online communication. The VCB Meeting Planner provided a much needed source of support when it came to finding new slots for the congresses and meetings that had to be postponed in 2020 due to the restrictions in place during the year. 
The Vienna Convention Bureau organized around 30 virtual formats and represented Meeting Destination Vienna at almost 40 online events, during which the VCB made contact with numerous organizers of congresses and events. More than 100 applications were processed and some 80 active local association members were contacted.
Another focus of its work was on creating and sharing relevant content for event planners. Digital communications centering on the topic of a safe and smoothly functioning city were also intensified. Incorporating digital solutions is now an even more important aspect of planning and organizing meetings. As part of this drive, the VCB published various pieces of information and a list of helpful contacts to ensure the success of hybrid events on its website, where best practices can also be found. The introduction of the new Meeting Destination Vienna brand in 2020 and the launch of the Meeting Destination Vienna – now.together slogan highlights the collaborative approach within the industry and with its customers. The image campaign planned for September 2020 had to be postponed until May 2021.