Rand Media Group attended the 2009 New York Times travel show in February and talked to most exhibitors their about thier business expectations and online marketing ambtions in 2009.

2009 Expectations

Although slightly smaller than in years past, exhibitors were surprisingly optimistic with regard to sales projections for 2009, with more exhibitors expecting sales to remain the same or increase, though a significant number were expecting a decline.

Operators in countries facing substantial upward pressure on the value of their currencies, such as Japan and the United States, are concerned about a softening in tourism inflow from abroad. Likewise, operators in countries that have experienced relative downward pressure on their currencies, such as Great Britain and certain parts of Latin America hope to benefit from this foreign exchange volatility.

Online Marketing Spending

Notwithstanding a slower global economy, the majority of travel and tourism operators intend either to increase or keep advertising expenditures the same While an vast majority of exhibitors have a website, very few said they had done anything to promote their website online. However, there is a growing recognition that investing in travel internet marketing is important. Many exhibitors said they intended to invest in internet marketing channels and Google AdWords and search engine optimization techniques were mentioned often.

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