Geneva Tourism & Conventions is a privately run public service organisation. Created more than 120 years ago by representatives of the Geneva business community, its mission is to develop, market and promote the Geneva region as a world-class tourist destination by: developing top sales & Marketing activities in key B2B and B2C markets , providing high quality support and information to tourist tourists interested in visiting the city, and organizing key events (specifically the world known Geneva festival that attract above 2 million visitors per annum)
1. Tell us more about your work within the Geneva Tourism & Conventions entity?
I’ve been working for Geneva Tourism & Conventions since 3 years, as Market Manager for GCC countries, India and France. Our mission in few words is really easy: expend our love for Geneva with a true authenticity!
In to more detail, our duty is to promote Geneva as a tourist destination for leisure activities and conferences. To ensure the reception of guests, tourists or excursionists.
To encourage and coordinate actions for the development and promotion of tourism, whether they are carried out by public or private entities.
Thanks to our close collaboration with Switzerland Tourism, we have the opportunity to visit our partners the Travel Agency around the GCC countries who are our ambassador to recommend Geneva among their VIP and clients.
We are as well really delighted to receive a significant number of Me- dia and Influencer trip during the year the let Geneva shine.
2. What is the positioning of Geneva?
Considered for decades as a busi- ness destination, Geneva is repositioning itself to promote its leisure activities.
The promotion of Geneva as a leisure destination began several years ago. The concept has met with great success, with a significant increase in overnight stays in July and August and during week-ends (excluding pandemics). On the strength of this revival, Geneva has received the three times the “Leading European City Break Destination” award at the World Travel Awards.
To accompany the strategic repositioning of the destination, we’ve unveiled a new, modern graphic identity. With its signature, “Geneva, the Resort City” and its new slogan “Visit – Meet – Repeat”, the campaign carries the resort concept loud and clear.
By playing on popular keywords, reminiscent of the various leisure activities of a resort, the campaign promises to make a lasting impression and to give the city a new chance to attract tourists from all over the world and even the Swiss!
3. Can you talk us through strategies for B2B and B2C markets?
Our strategy is based on 4 main axes:
Key Account Managment, with our sales calls in Saudi Arabia for example, workshop at the GCC, FAM Trip hosting to make our travel agent partners live the Geneva experience.
Key Media Management, both B2c and B2B oriented, which is very important for us. Hosting media, influencers and our press activities in general through our agencies in the markets.
Campaigns and promotions, with our B2C events like our Choco pass launch, the E-marketing with our “Always On Campaign” supported by our SoMe campaigns.
And last but not least the integra- tion of our partners by creating products like the Geneva Resort Pass.
This strategy is supported by our expertise which is the key to success. We are experts in the destination of Geneva, so that we can best inform our visitors.
We are experts in our markets and customers, to understand their needs and expectations.
And finally, we are experts in our business to offer a unique experi- ence to our clients.
4. What are the measures in place to dynamize exchanges between Saudi Arabia and Switzerland?
Saudi Arabia has always been our priority market in the Middle East. In collaboration with Switzerland Tourism we organize different road shows like the Switzerland Travel Experience Race to Switzerland, this year we were in Dubai just be- fore the ATM for the Discover Europe Submits, workshops where we invite our travel agent partners to discover our destinations and live the Swiss Made experience.
As mentioned in the previous ques- tion the Media Trips and Social Media Trips are very important and allow us to remain connected with our customers by exposing our novelties and the charms of our different seasons.
5. You are covering GCC and India markets, according to your experience, what feedback, reaction or data are you receiving from your research or interactions?
The Covid periode has been real- ly difficult for the entire tourism industry in Switzerland and in the main cities in general.
The summer 2021 was significant and brings a very positive sign to certify that tourism is back again! Thanks to the GCC travellers, who were the first overseas market to come back after the pandemic in Geneva, we’ve been able to see our figures increasing. We were still far away from our 2019 statistics which was more than 240 000 room nights for the GCC market, but it was really encouraging.
According to the feedback we have from Switzerland Tourism, and from our partner the local travel agent, 2022 promises to be a very successful year for Tourism industry.
Our clients from Saudi and GCC are ready to travel to Switzerland and enjoy their holiday in the Swiss cities and our green mountains.
6. From a business perspective, what are the possibilities for Saudis when looking at Geneva?
Note related to our mission, it is more the Economic Promotion of Geneva
7. As a touristic destination, what are the key landmarks/events not to be missed?
The “Jet d’Eau” water fountain is obviously unmissable in Geneva! It is more than a landmark for us as it I directly linked to the DNA of Geneva, the watchmaking. The flower clock, which is the largest in the world, is again a symbol to certify that you are in the Birthplace of the Luxury watchmaking.
One of the event not to be missed with be the Watches and Wonders if you stay in the same thematic. We have plenty of event business oriented as EBACE for Aviation, VITAFOOD for nutraceutical, dietary and nutritional industries, and the Famous Geneva Motor Show in March 2023.
Overall the Geneva Lifestyle is the main attraction, being in the Re- sort City where nature is at every corner, enjoying your favorite meal facing the Jet d’Eau and the Mont Blanc, and admiring the sun set in the old town from your balcony in a luxu- rious five-star hotel. What else …?
8. What are the main attractive fields for business exchanges in Geneva for Saudi prospects?
Note related to our mission it is more the Economic Promotion of Geneva.
9. What is coming up next for the Geneva Tourism & Conventions in the Kingdom?
This summer, “Geneva, the Resort City” opens its doors for its second season. Through the eyes of its inhabitants and visitors, we discover the special spaces that add to its charm, and the hidden gems that provide its exotic flair. An open-air playground where the well-being and art of living ‘à la Genevoise’ can be experienced and where every- one can find their happiness thanks to the more than 100 activities included in the Resort Pass!