Insight

How Meet AC uses interactive 360º media to WOW event planners and drive RFPs


What’s the first thing that comes to mind when you think of Atlantic City?

For some, it’s images of the world-famous boardwalk and gaming. Thanks to the work of Meet AC, the city’s convention sales and marketing group, Atlantic City is a hub for corporate conferences, meetings, and retreats.

“Atlantic City is within driving distance to a third of the nation’s population, and has meeting and event space ranging from 600,000 sq. ft. at the Atlantic City Convention Center, to intimate meeting space at our hotel properties,” explains Meet AC’s Marketing Director, Karina Anthony.

Last year, Meet AC booked 255 meetings and conventions–that’s about one event for every weekday–generating more than $348 million in economic activity. In fact, for every dollar Meet AC invests, $48 is returned to the local economy (source). To keep up the momentum, Meet AC recently partnered with YouVisit to launch an virtual reality experience for event planners, designed to attract and inform. It features an interactive 360° tour of the Atlantic City Convention Center and other nearby attractions.

The Meet AC team plans to use the experience primarily as a sales enablement tool to ensure the city is top of mind among meeting, convention, and trade show organizers. Meet AC is also using the experience to generate media buzz.

A powerful new sales tool

Before Atlantic City launched its virtual reality tool for event planners, the Meet AC sales team promoted their facilities with 2D videos, PowerPoint decks, and PDF floor plans. While those tools effectively deliver information, the immersive experience is a game-changer that allows event planners to take a 360-degree tour that showcases the convention center in a whole new way.

“An immersive experience lets the planner feel like they’re in Atlantic City and see the variety of ways their meeting or event can fit in our spaces,” explains Anthony.

Virtual reality for event planners on any device

Since the experience is viewable on mobile, desktop, and VR, Meet AC’s sales team has many opportunities to leverage the tour. At trade shows and industry events, the team will use VR headsets to show the experience.

When back at the office, the team will share the experience via email, so event planners can explore the convention center in immersive 360-degrees from the comfort of their own mobile phone or desktop PC. (The Meet AC app is available for free in the Apple App Store and Google Play.)

“Meeting planners will have the opportunity to not only virtually experience the Atlantic City Convention Center from any device, but will also be able to experience Atlantic City’s iconic sites throughout the experience,” said Jim Wood, president and CEO of Meet AC recently explained to the Trade Show News Network.

Conclusion

We’re thrilled to play a role in helping Meet AC reach its goals for 2018. Since its launch, the project is already meeting generating media buzz, and has been featured in SNJ Today, Press of Atlantic City, Philadelphia Business Journal, Trade Show News Network, and Prevue.

“It’s technology like VR that has provided marketers with another tool of sales,” Robert Ambrose, a casino and hospitality consultant, recently told the Philadelphia Business Journal, “The competitive environment for convention and tourism business is intense. We are looking at the perception of a city versus the reality of it. The use of VR can show in virtual-real-time what a still picture cannot.”

Like Robert, we’re excited for the opportunities for destination marketers that use immersive media to meet their business objectives. Interactive 360? virtual tours can be used at every stage of the sales funnel, and for audiences as varied as event planners, tourists, and conference attendees.

View the experience below, then learn more about YouVisit and Meet AC:

Virtual Tour

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