Destination Guide: Scotland

Business Tourism Scotland Conference unveils technology for tourism

In Glasgow's state-of-the-art Scottish Exhibition and Conference Centre, hundreds of members of Scotland's business tourism community gathered this week to discover how they can make the most of current and future technology.

Among the speakers at the Business Tourism Scotland Conference 2013 at the SECC was Chris Elmitt, managing director of audience engagement firm Crystal Interactive, who took audience interaction to a new level by dishing out hundreds of mini iPads.

The unique session gave conference and event organisers an in-depth understanding of how to make their own events appeal to a wide variety of personality types, including Tommy Teamer, Karen Conscientious, Mary Maverick and Dan Driven. 

In a talk called ‘The future is now’, Ray Kopcinski, senior director of Million Dollar Round Table, delivered a fascinating talk on how businesses can grasp the opportunities presented by new and developing technologies.

This included sophisticated recognition systems that will allow hotels to tailor rooms to their customers’ needs, including playing their favourite music, ordering their newspaper of choice and even scenting the room with their favourite fragrance.

Hosted by journalist Stephen Jardine, the conference also saw Dr Paul Redmond of the University of Liverpool ask ‘Who are our customers?’, in a presentation that showed how to engage and attract multiple generations.

For the first time, the Business Tourism Scotland Conference featured a ‘Local Heroes’ section, which saw six businesses from across Scotland show how they are utilising everything from social media and digital marketing to customer service and people development.

Neil Brownlee, head of VisitScotland’s Business Tourism Unit, said: "Business tourism is a £1.9 billion industry in Scotland but it is vital that we do not stand still and that continue to explore new opportunities. This country has an incredible amount to offer and I am sure that delegates have gone away from this year’s Business Tourism Scotland Conference brimming with inspiration and exciting new ideas. It’s a massive year for Scotland in 2014, when we welcome the world for Homecoming, the Commonwealth Games in Glasgow and the Ryder Cup at Gleneagles and the Business Tourism market, as always, will have a huge role to play."

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