How the National Business Aviation Association increased revenue in all areas, even during the pandemic.
As the host of one of the largest trade shows in the United States, the National Business Aviation Association (NBAA) is no stranger to the benefits of offering a smooth, automated experience to their show exhibitors. The Washington, D.C.-based organization, which represents more than 11,000 companies and professionals in the business aviation community, had a strong renewal rate for exhibits for its annual Business Aviation Convention & Exhibition (NBAA-BACE), the world’s largest civil aviation trade show. Yet NBAA lacked a proactive sales team to develop new business and cultivate relationships. It also experienced limited growth in sponsorships and advertising.
To keep thriving, the organization’s leaders knew they had to change their strategy; otherwise, NBAA would be leaving potential revenue untapped and opportunities to increase the sales pipeline unfulfilled.
“We had a need for an active sales team to be out in the market developing new business and creating relationships, beyond an automated experience for exhibitors,” said Andrew Broom, senior vice president of strategy, marketing and innovation at NBAA. “We needed a partner we could trust to provide consultative sales and white-glove service, while maintaining our audience’s high expectations of our premier events.”
The organization partnered with MCI USA in 2019 to sell exhibits and sponsorships for NBAA-BACE. MCI USA quickly demonstrated its value and, within a year, became NBAA’s primary sales team for all eight of their events, including EBACE, their premier European event, which draws over 13,000 attendees.
MCI USA’s strategic approach and sales expertise resulted in revenue growth for NBAA as well. During NBAA's 2022 fiscal year (July 2021–June 2022), MCI USA contracted 62 new sponsors and generated an additional $1 million of revenue for their sponsorship and media program. In addition, MCI USA provided sponsorship fulfillment support while a staff member was on leave, which resulted in a permanent solution to assist NBAA’s operations.
“Working with MCI USA as a partner has been beneficial on all fronts,” Broom said. “We’ve seen significant improvements in sponsorship and advertising revenue that has positively contributed to our organization’s bottom line.”
By providing consistent staffing and exhibit sales insights and knowledge of trends, as well as anchoring relationships in the market, MCI USA built a trusted partnership with NBAA. Led by a shared vision for success, NBAA was able to enhance their event experiences and cultivate long-term relationships with key industry partners.