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UAE residents, media, industry, sponsors give high ratings to Dubai International Film Festival in N

Tue Jul 07,2009

Of 560 members of the public polled, 99 per cent recommend DIFF;  98 per cent would attend again

Respondents applaud cultural diversity and quality of films, customer service, facilities and global reach

DIFF obtains overall satisfaction score of 80 per cent from four core groups

UAE residents and visitors, members of the press, industry participants and sponsors are extremely positive about the Dubai International Film Festival, the emirate’s flagship cultural event, according to the results of an independent survey released by The Nielsen Company and Festival management.

More than 95 per cent of the 560 Festival-goers (general public) polled deemed the variety of films on offer during the week-long Festival as perfect in every way, excellent or good; with 94 per cent describing the films selected as relevant to current local, regional and global issues. A full 99 per cent said they would recommend the festival to a friend; and 98 per cent said they would attend again.

On customer service, 96 per cent of those surveyed rated DIFF customer service staff as perfect, excellent or good. More than 99 per cent appreciated the Madinat Jumeirah facilities, with the Mall of the Emirates and Dubai Festival City facilities earning 98 per cent and 92 per cent favourability respectively.

DIFF Chairman Abdulhamid Juma said the Festival commissioned the customer satisfaction survey to evaluate perceptions in the local, regional and international community, and to measure the quality of service experienced across audiences. Nielsen also surveyed 60 media, 60 film industry participants and Festival sponsors during December 2008, on location at DIFF venues and through off-site interviews.

“All of us who work on the Festival want to provide the best possible experience for all our guests and partners, whether they are watching films in the cinemas, participating in our events and industry gatherings, investing in us or reading about us around the world,” Juma said. “This survey is one means of ensuring the Festival’s continued success, by keeping us in close contact with our audiences and assessing our efforts to provide a quality, accessible and continuously improved event.”

The Festival will work to address the few areas of improvement mentioned in the survey, including the need for more information about Festival films, he added.

Film industry attendees, including buyers, distributors and festival programmers from the Middle East, Europe, Africa, Asia and the Americas, praised the quality of the Dubai Film Connection, a DIFF-initiative launched to market Arab talent and film projects. They also gave high marks to the panel sessions convened by The Exchange, the Festival’s training and development wing, to discuss important industry issues. Industry participants also cited the presence of international industry influencers as a critical plus.

The survey, one of the most comprehensive conducted for any event in the region, used mystery shopping exercises and in-person interviews to record the most accurate perceptions of the Festival. It polled 560 members of the public, 60 media representatives and 60 industry participants through face-to-face interviews as they exited the cinemas. An additional five sponsors were also interviewed in person.

The sixth edition of the Dubai International Film Festival will be held from December 9 to 16, 2009.

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