Liverpool has become the first city to launch a new multi-sensory platform, enabling event planners to experience its sights, sounds, textures, tastes and smells - wherever they are in the world.
‘Fully immersive’ virtual tours of the city region and key event venues are on the horizon, as Liverpool Convention Bureau embraces the ground-breaking technology. Corporate and association event planners are also set to explore The ACC Liverpool Group’s events campus – ACC Liverpool, Exhibition Centre Liverpool, and the M&S Bank Arena - through the Hyybab (https://hyybab.com/) system.
Tourism industry bosses have forged a partnership with the team behind the software, designed to power a resurgence of business tourism and consumer travel after they were decimated over the last 18 months.
Event planners will receive a specially curated selection of sensory experiences which convey the city’s heritage and culture. One of the innovative items is a fruity fragrance, created in honour of the Beatles’ 1967 hit Strawberry Fields Forever. Other key elements will include carefully selected flavours and the option for hosts to uniquely craft each sensory experience depending on event planners’ specific needs.
Another pioneering benefit is to allow event planners to undertake a highly detailed virtual visit of the city region before an-in person visit.
The event-planning process can begin remotely, making physical site inspections more targeted and effective.
Jenny Jensen, Head of Business Tourism at Marketing Liverpool, said: “As an alternative to visiting in person, the option to give event planners a whole experience, not just on a screen, is hugely beneficial to us.
“Our international bidding team sees this as a brilliant unique selling point. It enables potential global clients to see Liverpool at the very first stage of a bid. We can now forge ahead with our bids when planners have not yet had a chance to set foot in our city.”
Adrian Evans, Assistant Director, Conference and Exhibition Sales at The ACC Liverpool Group, said: “Now more than ever our focus is on finding new ways to make the event planning journey as smooth as possible, so we’re delighted to be the first convention centre featured on the Hyybab platform.
“Showcasing our venue and iconic city without the need for travel will not only provide added flexibility for our clients, but is also a sustainable, innovative alternative to in-person site visits.
“The past 18 months have made in-person site visits challenging at best and virtually impossible for our international clients. Hyybab will be an invaluable tool for the team and will provide all the engagement of an in-person site visit without the need for unnecessary travel - perfect for planners looking to envision their event and explore the flexibility of our campus and the wider city.
“Hyybab also offers more evidence of the collaborative way in which Liverpool works on behalf of the organiser, ensuring the best possible client and delegate experience from the initial enquiry all the way through to the delivery of another world class event.”
Innovators Leo Platt and Paul Lloyd have pivoted from their renowned tourism consultancy Leopold Marketing to develop the hyybab system.
Leo said: “We are very grateful to the Liverpool city region for their belief in us. We deliver a stirring and memorable experience for all those needing to get a true feel for a destination. Enabling event planners to savour what Liverpool has to offer is a real honour and we could not be prouder of forging this partnership and seeing the potential unfold.”
Hyybab’s versatility can be adapted to various sectors within tourism and inward investment, including large-scale event spaces, hotels, cityscapes, incentive tourism locations, attractions, and commercial property.
Leo added: “As our industry recovers from the effects of the pandemic and lockdown, there remains a significant demand for more virtual marketing methods.
“Our research has shown that many potential clients prefer a digital set-up, not only as things go back to normal but also as they consider the ongoing time and budget needed to organise a successful fam trip.”