A marketing start-up which ‘transcends’ virtual tours with hands-on experiences, gifts and treats is set to be rolled out across the globe after a successful pilot run.
hyybab is a concept described as “fully immersive” that empowers bookers, planners and buyers to sample sights, sounds, tastes and smells of a location, without having to set foot in the premises. At its heart is a ground-breaking, adaptable technology platform nurtured since lockdown first hit.
It’s also been invented to cut costs and organisation time needed to show influential parties of bookers around a venue in a face-to-face familiarisation trip.
Innovators Leo Platt, a former head of marketing at Visit Manchester, and husband Paul Lloyd, backed by an SME Restart grant and private investment have pivoted alongside their renowned Midlands-based company Leopold Marketing to develop the web-based system.
It’s already been trialled at The Park Regis Birmingham in Birmingham city centre.
Leo said: “We have had the most amazing feedback. We are very proud of all the hard work we have put into hyybab so far and the wonderful reception it’s getting. A year ago, as the first lockdown hit, things didn’t look good and our industry was decimated.
“We wanted to remain positive and optimistic and use our wealth of experience in organising fam trips and corporate hospitality to do something special to help our colleagues rebound from the pandemic.
“After a year of hard work, late nights and overcoming many challenges, hyybab is the result.”
When the first lockdown hit Leo and Paul decided to launch a new venture that runs alongside their marketing company, Leopold Marketing which specialises in destination marketing and works with clients from major tourism organisations.
They ploughed their time and resources into creating the hyybab platform and undertook confidential market research with trusted clients to help boost its potential.
hyybab aims to deliver a stirring and memorable experience for all those needing to get a true feel for venue. It’s an exclusive, invite-only system with every experience hosted by the venue, and is completely customisable. Unlike with Zoom or Teams, hyybab has crystal clear stereo sound, high-definition graphics and does not require the user to create an account or download any software.
It stimulates the senses through the use of unique features including treats to eat and be pampered by from venue owners, headphones and 3D viewers. Its versatility can be adapted to various sectors within tourism, including airlines airport lounges, luxury boats and cruises, spas and attractions.
There are also plans to expand into larger scale events venues, retirement living complexes, commercial property and educational establishments.
Paul added: “As our industry recovers from the effects of the pandemic and lockdown, there remains a huge demand for more virtual marketing methods.
“Our research has shown that many potential clients still prefer a digital set-up, not only as things go back to normal but also as they consider the time and budget needed to organise a successful fam trip.
“We’ve been bowled over by the hugely positive feedback we’ve had and are excited by the potential and future for hyybab.”