Taiwan External Trade Development Council (TAITRA) recently launched an online exhibition for 28 local manufacturers, who were scheduled to display their products at the Hannover Industrial Fair until the fair was canceled for the first time in its 73-year history due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
“The COVID-19 pandemic is accelerating the trend for fairs and exhibitions to go ‘online to offline,’” TAITRA president and chief executive Walter Yeh said at a news conference in Taipei. “Local buyers can visit the fair [in person], while overseas buyers can go online.”
The exhibition is powered by virtual reality (VR) technology, allowing buyers to browse the exhibition and click on items to bring up more detailed information, such as specifications and prices, and send a message to the vendor, Yeh said.
Unlike physical exhibitions, there are no space or time restrictions, he said.
“Of course, we will refresh the exhibition with fresh content, but otherwise it is available 24 hours a day every day for continual access,” he added.
In addition to the online exhibition, TAITRA is working with individual companies to implement “martech” (marketing technology) tools, such as big data analysis, influencer targeting and buyer behavior analysis, Yeh said.
Brian Su, chief executive of Su Zin Industry Co, which supplies industrial dough mixer parts, said that his company’s Web traffic has more than doubled with TAITRA’s assistance.
“We have also seen more orders from different nations, with customers in Vietnam, India and the United States able to find us,” Su said.
As local manufacturers have been hit hard by the pandemic due to a drop in global demand, TAITRA is providing the VR exhibition and martech support free of charge to participating companies, although it would consider charging in the future, the government-backed trade promotion body said.
TAITRA said it plans to hold 80 online VR exhibitions for local businesses each year.
Source: Taipei Times
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