As an agency that works with clients at the forefront of the travel industry, attending WTM London was no-brainer. As with previous years it was both an exciting and useful experience for the London team who explored the latest innovations, trends and challenges in the world of travel.  The OPM team also joined multiple speed networking sessions and seminars involving travel industry leaders and influencers.

The event attracts over 18,000 high calibre attendees reflecting the vibrant and diverse nature of the global travel marketplace. Some of the seminars which attracted the Optimus PM team attention included:

  • UK Travel Market: What to expect in 2019 including insights from easyJet, Hilton & TUI
  • Keynote: Instagram and Travel, led by the EMEA Travel Lead of Instagram & Facebook
  • Global Consumer Trends: Opportunities for the Travel Industry, presented by The Category Director of Travel, Leisure and Foodservice Research of Mintel
  • The ROI of Experiential Travel with insights from Cirque du Soleil Entertainment Group
  • Trends in Tourism advertising in Digital & Traditional Media and a Glimpse on Brexit’s Effect, presented by Nielsen
  • Digital excellence in Brexit Britain including opinions from Historic Royal Places, Travel Perspective and The Tourism Alliance
  • Keeping Ahead of Megatrends Shaping Travel, sharing expertise and insights from Euromonitor International
  • Heightening Customer Experiences Through Dynamic Ancillary Packaging, a case study by Eurostar International
  • 6 steps to drive engagement and experience through analytics, insights from Google’s Cloud Head of Travel Industry
  • 15 Essential Customer Communication Trends, presented by Wanderlust

In common with many digitally influenced marketing conferences there was a focus on some key buzz words and phrases like “quality content”, “influencer marketing, “AI”, “putting customer first”, “personalisation”. However, what was of most interest to the OPM team was the need to truly understand, trust and use data in the best way in order to make informed decisions, drive innovation and reduce wasted budget. Use of data was a huge influence on speakers talking about a diverse range of subjects including; sustainability in travel, managing overcrowded destinations, cracking the Chinese market, empowering women, , diversifying a business proposition through added services and using machine learning to supercharge personalisation.

Another other take home trend was that many brands – big and small – had turned to partners, agency or experts to explore the trends and insights relevant to them in order to move quickly and reduce risk.

The final point which was the undercurrent of  WTM London was the need to innovate here and now – be flexible, move fast, listen to what customers need and want, be the first to explore an opportunity and step boldly in 2019.

Author: Ellie Inman

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