September 10 2020  |  Industry News

Top KOLs to attend Virtual Travel Retail Expo

By Hibah Noor

A dedicated virtual KOL Sphere will bring a group of influential KOLs to the The Moodie Davitt Report’s inaugural Virtual Travel Retail Expo

A roster of international Key Opinion Leaders (KOLs) with millions of followers will participate in The Moodie Davitt Report’s inaugural Virtual Travel Retail Expo, the organizers have announced.

The program will see influencers from across Asia, Europe, the US and Australia engage with the travel retail channel. It has been developed by communications and design agency FILTR and leading Asian communications consultancy QINRIVE.

Boasting millions of followers globally, the KOLs plan to interact and connect with brands, retailers, airports and other delegates in a pioneering consumer component of the event, taking place virtually from October 12 to 16.

Led by FILTR’s Communications Director James Brown and QINRIVE CEO Ziqin (Kelly) Gao, the program centers on a campaign called KOL Ambassadors. The campaign helps influencers discover the latest travel retail products, services and experiences in order to inspire consumers for when the world of travel reopens, they said.

Leading KOL voices across travel, lifestyle and the worlds of beauty, fashion and F&B will take residence in a virtual KOL Sphere in the Experience Hub. The KOL Ambassadors will be able to learn about the latest launches, meet with brands one-on-one and take part in product unboxing experiences remotely.

At the end of the Virtual Travel Retail Expo, the Ambassadors’ top picks will be shared through their social media channels and across The Moodie Davitt Report’s platforms. Coverage from exhibitors will be achieved on an earned (unpaid) basis.

The KOL Ambassadors line-up will be announced in the coming days.

Raising awareness and building demand

FILTR Communications Director James Brown commented: “Virtual Travel Retail Expo exhibitors – from the biggest multinationals to the newest independents and start-ups – have the opportunity to reach a broad consumer audience through the KOL Programme. With international flights largely still on hold, we know that KOLs have not had the chance to explore the latest product launches and novelties to grace travel retail stores. Alongside QINRIVE, we have created a channel for brands to raise awareness and build demand for their products and services in travel retail for when traveler volumes return, supporting the industry in recovery.”

QINRIVE Asia Founder and CEO Kelly Gao said: “Travel retail is often referred to as the sixth continent, so it is fantastic to collaborate with KOLs from across different regions and come together in a new digital sixth continent – the Virtual Travel Retail Expo. Travelers from China and the broader Asian region are key to the recovery in travel retail and similarly KOLs from this part of the world are highly influential on the global stage. With hundreds of millions of loyal followers, they create and lead consumer trends, influence travel decisions and inspire consumers globally through various social media touchpoints across their travel journeys.”

Gao added: “During the past three years, QINRIVE has worked closely with leading global brands to develop integrated communications campaigns to inspire consumers with experiential campaigns in travel retail through KOLs. But after the epidemic, we have had to think carefully about how to provide fresh inspiration for the future of influencer marketing. We are honored to be a part of the new era of digital travel retail conferencing led by the Moodie Davitt Report and FILTR, and we look forward to creating a truly memorable and historic KOL Ambassadors campaign at the Virtual Travel Retail Expo.”

The KOL Programme is enhanced by The Moodie Davitt Report and the line-up of official Virtual Travel Retail media partners, including Americas, Asia and Gulf-Africa Duty Free & Travel Retailing magazines, providing ongoing editorial and social media support.

The creation of a dedicated KOL Sphere in the Experience Hub and a KOL workshop, hosted and managed by FILTR and QINRIVE, will continue to shine the spotlight on this important, evolving and highly relevant marketing workstream. Further details will be announced soon.

The Moodie Davitt Report Founder and Chairman Martin Moodie said: “The Virtual Travel Retail Expo KOL Programme is really exciting. The power of digital is allowing us to innovate and challenge the status quo of tradeshows and redefine the landscape. FILTR and QINRIVE are top-class communications agencies, who The Moodie Davitt Report works with extensively, and we are delighted to be partnering with them both to bring KOLs to the expo.”

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