If you have a special target audience (like the tourism industry is for us), it’s always a good idea to go where they are. Having conversations with them helps you understand better their needs, the trends in the industry and also can help you build important contacts.
These were my thoughts when I bought my ticket for this year’s Hungexpo Travel exhibition that was held in Budapest, Hungary between 2nd and 5th March this year.
Here are 5 things I learned there by having conversations with the exhibitors.
1. Big names use well-established, expensive software
Firstly, I learned that big travel agencies and hotel chains usually have their IT partners that sell them well-established software. That’s easy to understand: they need everything integrated – their website, their partners’ websites, their CRM system, their advertisements, their HR systems, etc. They also want to make sure they can trust in their systems, and they can definitely afford it to spend sometimes $10,000s on it.
Can they be a good target for a WordPress developer company? Maybe for their front-end site. But they will sure need some custom plugins to integrate their website with their other systems, too.
2. Our target audience are the smaller providers
It turned out that they were more enthusiastic than big companies while I was talking to them about our upcoming plugins and themes. Maybe just because I had the chance to talk to their owners / managers and not just the front-office staff?
Anyway, fortunately there are a lot of them. So we are now fine-tuning our strategy to provide the best WordPress solutions for the small companies in the tourism business.
3. Learned a lot about how our upcoming plugins should be designed
That’s why it’s really worth it to go to these kinds of exhibitions and fairs. You can talk directly to your target audience: learn what kind of words they are using to describe things, what their biggest concerns are, etc.
4. Travel companies do need better websites
Some of them were really enthusiastic when I told them I was a website developer specialized in the tourism sector. It means that there is a need for what we are doing. Which is a good news – as we’re planning to come up with a lot of new stuff in April. Stay tuned, we are coming!
5. There is a lot of space for WordPress
While WordPress powers 27% of the world’s websites, it seemed to me that it was underrepresented while I browsed through the websites of the participants. I am sure that this number is growing with the general growth of WordPress usage. But it also means that there is a lot of room for improvements for us, WordPress developers and marketers.
+1. Our next investment should be a good photo camera 🙂
Finally, here are some pictures from Hungexpo Travel 2017 (sorry for the bad quality, I took them with my phone)…