Virtual expo offers marketing bargains

The homepage of Virtual Property Expo 2021.

Event organiser Rightman Co and digital marketing group YDM (Thailand) aim to achieve 5 billion baht in sales at a four-day virtual property expo which costs a fraction of a traditional brick-and-mortar fair.

Kampol Nisitsukcharoen, vice-president of event organiser Rightman Co, said that expos are one of the most powerful marketing tools as they can generate high sales volumes from one place where a large number of exhibitors and buyers congregate.

“Exhibitions might be halted by the pandemic shutdowns, so every business needs to move on amid the unpredictable, struggling times,” he said. “As volume makes an impact, we will hold a virtual expo for Thai properties to boost sales online.”

Virtual Property Expo 2021, through, will be a virtual trade fair where developers and buyers can meet online with the same functions as a brick-and-mortar fair.

One virtual booth for one project will cost 80,000 baht, compared with 400,000-500,000 baht for a physical booth at a fair.

The virtual booth will provide a room where up to 100 visitors can meet sales representatives, who can log on from anywhere and have a real-time live chat with customers.

Ten additional private rooms will be provided for a private VDO call.

The event will be held from Oct 14-17 this year, from 10am to 10pm.

“This is a good chance to boost sales in the fourth quarter,” said Mr Kampol. “Return on investment for joining a virtual expo is higher than conducting online marketing on its own.”

Over the past two weeks, the company has promoted the virtual expo among large developers.

At least 10 of them bought five to 10 booths each for a total of 80-100 projects so far.

The organiser expects to host 300 projects and achieve sales of 5 billion baht.

“We plan to do it annually in the early fourth quarter and will expand to overseas markets next year as foreign buyers are a huge market, particularly those from China,” Mr Kampol said.

Thanapon Subsomboon, chief executive of YDM, said online promotion and marketing costs on popular platforms like Facebook and Google have soared as many developers shifted to digital channels during the lockdowns of the past 18 months.

“If developers use the same keyword, they have to bid the prices,” he said. “Social media and influencers come with high prices and non-focus marketing.”

Through precision marketing, the company has a digital platform to collect big data to draw real demand and those truly interested in the project, with around 580,000 on the list.

In June last year, Rightman, YDM and tech company Happenn established Virtual Solution Co, in which they own 40%, 30% and 30% stakes, respectively.

Virtual Solution held expos for Motor Show 2021 and Thailand Science Research and Innovation and an annual meeting for the Metropolitan Electricity Authority.