Ottawa Tourism, Shaw Centre and Invest Ottawa are collaborating to launch a program to bring more conferences and conventions to Canada’s capital city through the creation of local ambassadors. In addition to attracting potential ambassadors, the ThinkOttawa program also offers a number of solutions and support services to help win and deliver events across the city.
The program appeals to potential ambassadors by asking if they are trailblazers in their industry and wish to be the sort of leader that leaves a legacy. In particular, to increase engagement, ThinkOttawa highlights four key benefits to becoming an ambassador:
• Raised Profile – hosting an international conference can heighten the visibility of an ambassador’s work – whilst potentially generating additional research funding.
• Impact an Industry – with many international events only ever visiting a city once, it is an opportunity to leave a legacy in the ambassador’s industry and the city as a whole.
• Networking – ambassadorship provides a unique opportunity to expand networks, develop relationships and build research partnerships locally and across the world.
• Recognition – be recognised for their efforts in championing an event at annual awards attended by peers, government leaders and other industry experts.
The program also demonstrates how much support Ottawa Tourism, Shaw Centre and Invest Ottawa can offer ambassadors throughout the organising process:
• Bid Development – ThinkOttawa will work with ambassadors to prepare a customised and polished bid document and presentation.
• Venue and Accommodation – as destination experts the ThinkOttawa team will recommend and source proposals from venues and accommodation providers.
• Government, Community and Partnership Support – letters of support can be obtained from key stakeholders, partners and municipal government where applicable to help both the bid and organising process.
• Marketing and Promotional Materials – access to promotional photos and videos that showcase the city and its unique offerings will help in the initial bid process as well as securing attendance at the event itself.
• Financial Support – Ottawa Tourism offers funding programs designed to assist eligible organisations with exhibition and meeting space rental costs as well as other areas of expenditure.
“Ambassador programs are not unusual in the world of association conferences and congresses but we wanted to go the extra mile and create a truly bespoke offering for those individuals wanting to get involved,” comments Ottawa Tourism’s Vice President, Meetings and Major Events, Lesley Mackay.
“Specifically, we are looking to help those individuals become leaders, share knowledge, connect, introduce ThinkOttawa and identify opportunities for the city. As Canada’s capital we are home to national and international association representatives all looking to host events in creative and inspiring spaces. We want to show them why Ottawa is the perfect destination and how easy it is to hold events here.”