Gaining Edge CEO, Gary Grimmer said that the index will help destinations gain insights into how much convention business they should expect to host on an annual basis. Grimmer said that ICCA Statistics provides a great source of information on how many meetings are being held in cities around the world. He added that, until now, destinations had no standard reference for how many conventions they should reasonably expect to have.
Grimmer said that the purpose of the new index was to help cities in their goal setting and also to provide a meaningful new resource for use in their strategic planning processes.
The index scores cities based on their strengths in relation to 11 key drivers that GainingEdge says influence association decision making during destination selection processes. The first three are:
The database which underpins the index was developed through both primary research and use of 29 third party indices and data sources, including ICCA Data, all of which are used to score the relative strength of destinations in relation to each of the drivers. The index uses a 1,000 point scale and each city’s score out of 1,000 determines its place in the ranking.
Paris, France took top marks in the new competitive index, while it came in second in the ICCA list of busiest convention cities in 2017. However, Grimmer said that there is not a direct correlation between the ICCA numbers and those in the Competitive index.
The index really has nothing to do with which are the most successful cities.
The index really has nothing to do with which are the most successful cities. And, they are also stressing that this is not a qualitative study. This is not about which cities are the best choices for international conventions, this is about which cities overall have the most competitive products, Grimmer said.
They think that the scenario model will help destinations to gain insights into where they are and whether they should be in market share building mode or market share protection mode, Grimmer said.
As part of the index, GainingEdge has also created a scenario model which plots the cities based on two considerations, first whether their business is growing or declining and second whether they are hosting more or fewer conventions than the competitive index suggests that they should.