Cannes (FRANCE) The Sales and Marketing Action Plan 2015

SMAP 2015 : A New Energy for Tourism in Cannes

The Sales and Marketing Action Plan, SMAP 2015, developed by the Palais des Festivals and Congresses of Cannes in association with the local socio-economic players has been presented on Friday, November 28th, 2014 to the tourist industry professionals. It allows applying the tourism strategy through strong and pragmatic measures to revitalize the destination Cannes as well as the local economic market, by way of application of the city guidelines.

In a contrasted international economic environment, that became hypercompetitive, the Palais des Festivals and Congresses of Cannes plays a strategic role to maintain the level of excellence and attractiveness of the destination.
At the instigation of the new municipal team that defines the main development lines of the city, and in dialogue with the local professionals, it develops the decisive SMAP actions, to revitalize tourism, the main economic business sector of the city. Indeed, if we refer to 2013, the economic activity impact of the Palais des Festivals and Congresses amounts to more than 840 million Euros and induces 17000 direct and indirect jobs.
At the same time, Cannes commits to implement shared innovative means, adapted to the evolution of societal behaviors, and the mobilization of all economic and tourism actors to make the destination always more attractive.

The priorities in 2015

162 actions (against 160 in 2014) in 37 countries (against 35 in 2014) will be carried by the teams of the Palais des Festivals and Congresses supported by a Task Force made of different key players of the SEMEC, representatives of the city and local socio-economic players around a 2015 conquest strategy aiming at :

1- Value the identity of the destination and the image of Cannes.

2- Develop the number of congresses and strengthen the positioning of a modernized and professionalized Palais des Festivals and Congresses (optimize and spread occupancy rate over the year).

3- Offer a broader range of events and cultural life for festive weekends or as back up to congresses.

4- Federate all players around the charter Only Cannes, guarantee of excellence and quality of welcome.   

Business Tourism : Implementation of New Strategic Axes

First French business destination after Paris, Cannes today maintains the course of competitiveness by developing in 2015 concrete measures to strengthen its position and conquer new markets :

–    Improve performance with new experts
Three new representation agreements already signed :
· In China, major market for business and leisure tourism, the expert will lean in particular on the work begun 3 years ago by the China Club.
· In Europe, a representative based in London will intensify marketing practices undertaken on associative congress markets.
· For the pharmaceutical sector, a lobbyist will be in charge of supporting the current actions, in particular with the major European laboratories, to favor the organization of global events.
To be more offensive on priority markets, these experts so strengthen the marketing teams and representatives already present in the United States, Brazil and Russia.

 –    Co-organize exhibitions and congresses over priority months
A new dynamics is lead, leaning on local technical and professional knowledge and together with congress organizers, in order to introduce BtoB events on growth markets in the coming years.

–    Integrate BtoB into the International Game Festival
The International Game Festival, organized by the Palais, will take a new dimension by proposing a reserved space for the professional game market. This, at the same time BtoC and BtoB positioning, has for objective to generate more overnight stays, and thus economic fallout for the destination. It will start with the 2016 edition.

–    Unite Berlin, Amsterdam and Cannes around unique partnerships
The marketing teams of the three cities unite their strengths to propose a rotation of their itinerant events and develop joint marketing actions targeted towards priority markets. For Cannes : the opportunity to welcome new events and seduce new customers and show its skills.

–    Live the « Cannes is Yours » experience, a decisive action
The canvassed customers are invited to discover Cannes during “incentive” weekends, to live in situ experiences to help in the customer’s decision process.

–    Develop customer loyalty by valuing events  
The city of Cannes and the Palais des Festivals and Congresses federate a group of local socio-economic players around actions valuing congresses and recurring exhibitions. For the first time, the Palais joins its customers in their international marketing prospecting practices.

New professional events expected in 2015 and 2016 

February 3-5        Fashion Convention        450 pax
February 4-6        AMRAE                2500 pax   
February 9-10        ERA                1200 pax
March 20-22        AT Kearney Convention        1100 pax
March 28        TEDx Cannes            1000 pax
October 28-29        Central Cluster            450 pax
February 22-24    IPEM                    4000 pax
March 6-7        Century 21            2500 pax

Leisure Tourism : Priority is given to destination packages
Territory valuation becomes indispensable. Attractive thematic stay offers are created to highlight the main advantages of the destination all over the year.

–    Conjugate tourist attractions of Cannes
The city of Cannes and the Palais des Festivals and Congresses work together to create the perfect cultural timetable favoring “package stay” opportunities.
– Cultural weekends : shows, exhibitions and festivals extend to all places of the city to offer qualitative moments of discovery.
– City breaks : appreciated for its multiple aspects allying paradoxes, Cannes is at the same time an authentic, sports city, surrounded by savage and preserved nature (Lérins Islands, Croix des Gardes) but it is also an open-air shopping mall, in particular for luxury brands ; it also proposes multiple activities adapted to short stay desires. The championship of Provençal jousts, Le Suquet des Arts or Quai Saint-Pierre Nights, … successfully initiated in 2014 by the city, will be renewed in 2015, the storekeepers and restaurant owners will again be associated to these summer events. Various retail associations also committed to create new events that will be supported by the City and the teams of the Palais.

–    Unite Tourist Information Offices to create a new force
Cannes develops with other cities a new partnership dynamics to assure common promotion on identical sectors and target markets both in business and leisure tourism activities :
In the heart of the French Riviera
– together with Antibes, Cannes will canvass Scandinavia, China and Italy ;
– together with Mandelieu, Nice and Menton, joint offers will be proposed to the international clientele during these Winter holidays ;
– together with Saint-Tropez, joint actions will be lead towards the Indian market.
Closer to ski resorts
– with Isola 2000, Auron and Valberg, Sea & Mountain stay offers are showcased during summer and winter and with Courchevel,  a partnership of communication has been set up.
Other actions can also be introduced with French cities like Deauville around equestrian sport, Golf and activities bound to the sea.

–    Enrich group offers of new partners in February
In February, the regional events are for Cannes as many occasions to combine offers. The Lemon Festival of Menton, the Carnival of Nice and the Mimosa Festival of Mandelieu will be at the program for group offers in order to strengthen the attraction of the destination in February. 

–    Develop medical tourism, a pertinent niche opportunity
Cannes combines an all year place of leisure frame and competent healthcare professionals favoring medical tourism with a clientele choosing to come to Cannes for medical care. The Palais des Festivals and Congresses joins a group of private hospitals to develop this niche market. 

Airport, airlines and railroad companies : real assets for Tourism

The Palais des Festivals and Congresses also chose to strengthen accessibility of the destination.
· The International airport Nice Côte d’Azur joins the Palais to offer business clientele personalized and privileged airport welcome packages.
· Turkish Airlines, Austrian Airlines and Emirates are also associated to Eductours and verification surveys or still during canvassing of common prospects (travel agencies, tour operators …). 
· Attractive stay offers via Voyages SNCF and IDTGV will be scheduled. The new railroad line, Thello, connecting France and Italy starting beginning of December will be in the heart of a new marketing strategy. The World Fair to be held in Milan (from May 1st to October 31st, 2015) will allow a targeted international clientele to come to Cannes starting at 30€ (round trip).

Target markets : 37 countries for 162 actions

The various target markets are selected according to their potential estimated via studies and experience feedback of the socio-economic players of Cannes. The airline service of the airport allows to refine these choices in three categories :
Priority markets : France, England, the United States, Germany, Greater Russia (Russia, Azerbaijan, Kazakhstan), Italy, the Middle East, Scandinavia, China and Israel.
Secondary markets : Brazil, Belgium, Switzerland, Romania, Poland, the Netherlands, Austria, India and Turkey, the Baltic States, Lebanon, Estonia and Lithuania.
Emerging markets : Australia, Mexico, South Korea, Africa (Nigeria, South Africa).

The charter Only Cannes, showcase of the quality of welcome of the destination

Only Cannes, the Trust, Quality and Service charter, guarantee of a reliable, ethic and long-term development tourism in Cannes, will be more widely extended, in a club spirit to favor exchanges between the signatories, as well as a better visibility of the establishments joining this excellence approach. An advertising campaign will be launched to develop recognition of the charter and recruit new members through a new brand strategy. In parallel, a questionnaire will allow to collect views and opinions of the existing members and so initiate exchanges to optimize this charter.

Intensified digital communication

Digital communication is a key player to increase and favor the image of Cannes, it will be strengthened by high-impact innovative ways of promotion and new tools :

· Intensify web content, vector of positive viral
– Web sites, watch and strong reactivity on social networks, blogs, reservations online, opinions forum will be enriched by contents. Customers’ experiences will be optimized to create positive viral.
– Destination contracts with OTA (On Line Travel Agency) will be signed in order to stress the on-line referencing of Cannes via booking sites.
– A satisfaction questionnaire of the destination, supported by a certified AFNOR expert will accompany the hotelkeepers for a better management of client suggestions.
· Better understanding of on-line booking
– A partnership with a new operator will come to support the hotelkeepers in their tariff strategy (Yield management).
– The on-line booking service will be reorganized with links between the hotel sites and possibility for the congress or event organizers to associate their event, so facilitating the access to the offers.
· Facilitate information access during the stay 
– Broadcasting of tourist information and special offers on the TV screens of the hotels.
– A rethought mobile App facilitating access to information of the destination.
· Favor the dissemination and exploitation of information between the local socio-economic players
An intranet will be put online to favor exchanges between the local economic players of the tourism industry and allow them to share updated information.

Today, the City, the SEMEC, and the socio-professionals unite their strengths with method and enthusiasm to implement all the actions defined in this Sales & Marketing Action Plan: innovate, optimize, mobilize, develop loyalty and conquer.
This new energy for tourism in Cannes will offer our destination a development process to strengthen and consolidate its international competitiveness.