Looking over a wider areas of our research we can say that we have a long history not only in providing events education (the longest history in providing higher education degrees in Australia within the undergraduate Bachelor of Business program, and since then with the Masters of Business program, MBA and a great PhD students).Over the past 10 years many of the event team are associates of – and contribute to the research projects that the Centre for Tourism and Services Research (CTSRCentre for Tourism and Services Research) has been employed to conduct. In respect of the totality of Australian business events (of all types), this has included:- the benchmark National Business Events Study (2005) for Sustainable Tourism CRC (STCRC)- business event evaluation for United Nations World Tourism Organisation (UNWTO)- annual benchmarking studies for the Association of Australian Convention Bureaux.- In partnership with Arts Victoria, the CTSR developed the 'Encore' software. This allows convention centres and hotels to benchmark their business event performance, enabling accurate assessment of the sector’s economic contribution. My own role in Meetings and Conferences started before my academic one. As first conference and training session organiser for a well known car manufacturer (in 1990) to post graduate study, then work as researcher in economic development brought me to my first position as a university lecturer via my organisation of an international conference for a university in 1995. I have continued to be involved in education for and managing events (albeit a lot less frequently) ever since. My reason for moving to Melbourne, Australia, from a very agreeable life in Edinburgh, Scotland, was not the promise of beaches, surfing or sport of associate with Australia. No it was well recorded history of excellent in event education and research at Victoria University – and the knowledge that Melbourne is an excellent host of events of all types.
The rationale for establishing Ambassador Programmes is to bid for regularly occurring, roaming international association meetings and conventions take place across the globe. Ambassadors put forward proposals or invitations either as individuals or as part of an informal bidding group. Because of their status, input from these ‘local’ leaders has an impact on the decision making about where an international meeting will take place. At the very least, the absence of local support may be a key factor contributing to an unsuccessful bid. Many cities around the world, and a number of national destination marketing organisations and congress centres, attempt to proactively manage local input into the bidding process by setting up Ambassador Programmes. These programmes have developed to suit local financial, political and economic conditions. Some programmes involve intensive relationships with small numbers of ambassadors; whilst others undertake a dedicated team approach managing relationships and activities with 1,000 plus contacts via sophisticated direct marketing methods.
Getz (2003) noted the critical success factors for winning bidsHaving strong partners in the bidding processMake excellent presentations to decision makersTreat every bid as a unique processPromote the track record of the community in hosting eventsAssist other organisations to make better bidsICCA guide goes into:The value of ambassador programsStrategic considerations e.g. long-term commitment, alignment of objectivesWho to select as an ambassador?Key components of an ambassador programPractical support for ambassadorsStages in the bidding process
Cost and time constraints dictated an online survey methodPrograms offered a mix of new and established programs; small (20) and medium sized (120) programsICCA facilitated access to ambassador program organisers, organisers sent the link to the online survey to ambassadors for them to completeReminders were sent to boost the response rateData analysed using IBM Statistics (SPSS) v. 19
37% of respondents aged 50-59 years (most common response), a further 42.6% of respondents were aged between 30-49 years of age.
- Relative to total number of ambassadors in each program, Sawarak is over-represented in the results. Response rates per program:Club Melbourne (22 out of 148 = 15%)Al Safeer (19/120 = 16%)Sarawak (13/20 = 65%)
Preliminary observationsThe professional bodies that ambassadors belong to are importantin their decision to participate in the event bidding process56% of total respondents were members of a national based professional association69% of total respondents were members of an international professional associationMore personal motives for bidding do not appear until lower down the list (Rank 5)It is not surprising that career benefits rate so lowly given ambassadors are often at the top of their profession, invited to become members of these programs because of their recognised reputation and networks in a particular field.More surprising is the low rank afforded social benefits. As the ICCA Ambassador Programme guide notes, ‘dinners, concerts, award presentations’ are tools to recognise and reward ambassadors – perhaps other means of reward could replace these social functions.
Once again professional networks are important
Broad support from ambassadors for the role their programs play in attracting international meetings/events (though the may be some inherent bias in this finding).These items were answered by all respondents including those who’d not had any involvement in an event bid in the previous two years. Therefore it is not surprising that the ratings for the first two items are lower but overall still in general agreement.
Looking over a wider areas of our research we can say that we have a long history not only in providing events education (the longest history in providing higher education degrees in Australia within the undergraduate Bachelor of Business program, and since then with the Masters of Business program, MBA and a great PhD students).Over the past 10 years many of the event team are associates of – and contribute to the research projects that the Centre for Tourism and Services Research (CTSRCentre for Tourism and Services Research) has been employed to conduct. In respect of the totality of Australian business events (of all types), this has included:- the benchmark National Business Events Study (2005) for Sustainable Tourism CRC (STCRC)- business event evaluation for United Nations World Tourism Organisation (UNWTO)- annual benchmarking studies for the Association of Australian Convention Bureaux.- In partnership with Arts Victoria, the CTSR developed the 'Encore' software. This allows convention centres and hotels to benchmark their business event performance, enabling accurate assessment of the sector’s economic contribution.
Investigating Ambassador Programs: Motives For Bidding For International Meetings and Events #ICCA12 MONDAY 22/10/2012
Investigating Ambassador Programs:Motives for Bidding for International Meetings and Events Presented by Martin Robertson School of International Business Victoria University 51st ICCA Congress 20-24 October 2012 San Juan, Puerto Rico
Acknowledgements• Research conducted with the support of ICCAWe wish to thank:• Ksenija Polla, Noor Ahmad Hamid and Martin Sirk at ICCA• Suzana Bishop, Melbourne Convention Exhibition Centre• Mike Cannon and Dylan Redas Noel, Sarawak Convention Bureau• Abdulla Yousuf Abdulla, Dubai Convention Bureau
Presentation Overview• Study Background• Literature Review• Research Aim• Method• Results• Where to Next?
Study Background• ICCA approached VU as a member university to conduct a cooperative research project• Given the lack of studies on ambassador programs and the role ‘ambassadors’ play in bidding for international meetings and events, it was jointly determined to undertake exploratory research in this area
Literature Review• No academic studies exist on ambassador programs• Limited studies on bidding for events by convention and visitor bureaus (Getz, 2003)• More work on bidding for major/mega sporting events, though still limited• ICCA has produced a guide titled Congress Ambassador Programmes as a ‘how to’ booklet• Limited other intelligence related to the topic
Research Aim To identify the motives of ambassadors in becoming activebidders for international association meetings and conventions
Method• Online survey administered in October 2012• The questionnaire instrument was refined with feedback from ICCA• Three programs surveyed – Club Melbourne, Melbourne – Sarawak Convention Bureau Ambassadors Conference Scholarship Program, Malaysia – Al Safeer, Dubai• Response rate: 19%, 54 respondents to date• Preliminary (topline) results presented here
Results Demographic Profile of Respondents• Gender – 63% male; 37% female• Education – vast majority of respondents (89%) had a postgraduate qualification• Work status – vast majority (78%) employed full-time
Results Membership Profile of Respondents• Even mix of respondents across all programs, although relative to total ambassador numbers per program, Malaysian respondents are over-represented in the returned sample• The majority of respondents (51%) had been members of their program for less than 2 years; 37% members for 2-5 years
ResultsThe majority (67%) had attended one event/functionor more hosted by their program in 2011
ResultsAmbassadors actively attend international meetingsand events (32% attended 7 or more)
ResultsThe majority of ambassadors (61%) were activelybidding for international meetings and events
Results• Respondents who had been involved in bidding for an international meeting/event in the past 2 years, were asked, in reference to their most recent bid, whether or not it was successful. – 77% - Yes – 23% - No• These respondents were then asked using a 7-point scale their reasons for participating in the bid (1 = Not at all important; 7 = Extremely important)
ResultsRank Reason Mean Standard (Measured on 7-point scale) (n= 30) deviation1 Professional body support 5.60 1.652 Prestige or recognition for your professional body 5.60 1.913 Prestige or recognition for your country, region or city 5.40 1.794 Economic benefits for your country, region, city or 5.00 1.89 professional body5 Increased personal or professional profile 4.73 1.986 A prior indication of a high probability of success by the 4.47 1.68 award body7 Government directive/support 4.47 2.018 Personal encouragement by key stakeholders 4.40 2.119 Prestige or recognition for your employer 4.37 2.0410 Corporate support 4.17 2.0011 Career benefits 4.03 2.0912 Potential media coverage 3.90 2.2213 Social or other benefits 3.67 1.99
Results• Regardless of past bidding activity, all respondents were asked on a 7-point scale (1 = Not at all important; 7 = Extremely important), what factors they considered important when bidding for an international meeting/event• They were also asked about their future bidding intentions on a graphic rating scale(1 = Extremely unlikely; 100 = Extremely likely)
ResultsRank Reason N Mean Standard (Measured on 7-point scale) deviation1 Your professional networks 46 6.02 1.242 Resources available to make a bid 45 5.78 1.403 Support from the local meetings industry 46 5.76 1.434 Likely reputational benefits in your field from hosting the 46 5.74 1.45 event5 Profile of the event 45 5.67 1.386 Likelihood of bid success 44 5.25 1.547 Your personal networks 45 5.22 1.688 Likely economic impact of the event 46 5.20 1.499 Available time 44 5.20 1.6210 Cost of bidding 46 4.63 1.9511 Complexity of bid requirements 45 4.51 1.8712 Your role in the event of a successful bid 46 4.48 1.8513 Your level of influence over the event if the bid is 46 4.48 1.96 successful14 Risk of not hosting the event successfully 45 3.80 2.0715 Risk of not bidding 45 2.84 1.76
Results Reason N Mean Standard (Measured on scale – 1 to 100) deviationI intend to bid for an international meeting/event in the next 12 51 63.71 28.94monthsBeyond the next 12 months, I intend to bid for an international 52 70.12 21.97meeting/event in the next 2-3 years • Finally, ambassadors were asked to rate their level of agreement (on a graphic rating scale 1 =Strongly disagree; 100 =Strongly agree) with a series of summary statements regarding the value of ambassador programs
Results Reason N Mean Standard (Measured on scale – 1 to 100) deviationMy membership of an ambassador program has assisted me in 54 68.61 25.63bidding for international meetings/eventsMy membership of an ambassador program has assisted me in 53 62.02 23.39winning bids for international meetings/eventsAmbassador programs have an important role to play in 54 78.15 17.76ensuring destinations attract international meetings/eventsThe results indicate strong support for the value ofambassador programs in securing internationalmeetings and events
Where to next?• Analysis of the data collected will continue (including responses to a number of open-ended questions)• A research report will be drafted for comment by ICCA (end of November)• The research team will publish the findings of the study in a journal article to address the lack of academic studies on ambassador programs• Now the online survey has been developed, potential to administer the survey to other ambassador programs to facilitate cross-program and cross-country comparisons
Questions??? Project team• School of International Business, Victoria University – Dr Leonie Lockstone-Binney – Dr Paul Whitelaw – Martin Robertson – Dr Rodney Con Foo – & Dr Ian Michael, Zayed University, Dubai• For project queries contact: firstname.lastname@example.org