Strategic Tourism Marketing is critical for the competitiveness of tourism and hospitality organisations. This is particularly the case for destinations in Cyprus that suffer from transportation accessibility and high power dependency on tour operators and agents who control their transportation and distribution channels.
Strategic tourism management and marketing is of absolute importance during this period of crisis in Cyprus. Information Communication and Technologies (ICTs) provide a range of proactive and reactive tactical tools to support strategic tourism marketing for tourism destinations, travel trade and hospitality organisations. Social media in particular have changed the rules of engagement with consumers and made them co-creators and co-promoters of the tourism product.
This seminar elaborates on the engagement of agile strategic management and marketing techniques in a time of crisis. This expert seminar will enable participants to formulate innovative strategies that fully exploit ICT and social media to support hospitality and tourism managers attract more travellers, engage in active cocreation and enhance competitiveness and profitability.
The above-mentioned strategies will focus on promoting Cyprus as a tourism themed destination. For example the seminar will cover specialized themed areas of development such as Cultural, Medical, Gastronomic, Religious, Archaeological, Rural, and Wellness.
The seminar contains the latest research and management techniques to maximize the benefits of ICTs for strategic management and marketing as a key catalyst towards maximizing tourism sustainable competitiveness and profitability for hospitality and tourism organizations.
Tourism and hospitality organisations need to work in clusters to differentiate their products and services and serve holistically their target markets. Social media in particular will be explored as a methodology for cocreation and engagement with tourists before during and after their visit. Social media and engagement techniques for interactivity will be elaborated whilst looking into how emerging technologies and applications will support organisations to take advantage of emergent marketing techniques such as
• experience economy and Experience marketing
• Social Media
• Location Based
• Context Based
• Mobile devices
• Augmented Reality
During the seminar there will be demonstrations on how to use strategic tourism management and marketing, explore the external environment, develop and manage internal resources and reengineer all business processes in order to take advantage of the new realities. Methods to explore crisis management and business recovery will also be identified and discussed. Case studies from around the world will be discussed to demonstrate cutting edge marketing and promotion. These will include:
• Visit Britain
• Dunkin Donuts Cafe
• Giraffe Restaurants
INDUSTRY AND TRADE
• TUI/FIRST CHOICE
Conclusively, this authoritative and comprehensive seminar delivers methodologies that enable participants to appreciate the emerging trends in tourism marketing towards attracting more customers, increasing sales, improving experiences, adding value and empowering cocreation. The seminar will demonstrate how hospitality and tourism organizations can use ICTs intelligently for wealth creation and how each they can develop ICT enabled partnerships towards maximizing their collective competitiveness and profitability. As a result, strategic management and marketing opportunities emerge to take advantage of the full range of ICT and social media capabilities in order to enable organisations to attract more and higher spending customers and turn them into long term ambassadors.
Strategic Tourism Management and Marketing for tourism destinations and organisations is of critical importance for the prosperity of regions and also of local people. Managing and marketing tourism destinations are some of the most challenging jobs in tourism. As destinations are essentially regions and amalgams of tourism facilities and services they do not belong to individuals. Instead they represent a collection of both professional and personal interests for all the people who live and work there.
Hence, strategies and actions should take into account the wishes of all stakeholders, namely indigenous people, businesses and investors, tourists, tour operators and intermediaries, and interest groups. Perhaps the most difficult problem is ensuring the rational use of zero-priced public goods, such as landscapes, mountains, and the sea for the benefit of the stakeholders and at the same time preserving the resources for future generations. Conflicts can easily develop, especially when some (perhaps greedy) stakeholders exploit resources for short-term benefits. A compromise encompassing all these interests is extremely difficult if not impossible, but is the key to long term success.
As consumers increasingly value environmental resources and are prepared to pay for them premium prices. Hence, local resources become a central asset for destinations and tourism suppliers and their sustainability a core function of tourism marketing. Middleton and Hawkins (1998,p.8) state that “a marketing perspective is essentially an overall management orientation reflecting corporate attitudes that, in the case of travel and tourism, must balance the interests of shareholders/owners with the long-run environmental interests of a destination and at the same time meet the demands and expectations of customers”.
Hence, Destination Management Organisations (DMOs) tend to be part of the local, regional or national government and have political and legislative power as well as the financial means to manage resources rationally and to ensure that all stakeholders can benefit in the long term.
Strategic tourism management should enable destination management and marketing to act as tools and facilitators to achieve several strategic objectives, namely:
Hence, marketing should not only be regarded as a tool for attracting more visitors to a region, as it has been the case for most destinations. Instead, strategic tourism marketing should operate as a mechanism for rationalising the provision of tourism facilities and services locally in order to ensure that the strategic marketing objectives are achieved. Marketing should also ensure equitable returns on resources utilised for the production and delivery of tourism products, as well as the regeneration of these resources. Hence, marketing should be regarded as a strategic rather than a sales tool.
Porter (1985) suggests that competitive strategy "is the search for a favourable competitive position in an industry" which is a function of the attractiveness of the industry and the relative competitive position within that particular industry. He also argues that "competitive strategy aims to establish a profitable and sustainable position against the forces that determine industry competition". Competitiveness is, therefore, defined as the effort undertaken by organisations to maintain long term profitability, above the average of the particular industry within which they operate or above alternative investment opportunities in other industries. There is very little written in tourism about the competitiveness of destinations. However Ritchie and Crouch (1993) have developed a comprehensive model for tourism organisations which can be analysed to a great number of factors affecting the competitiveness of destinations.
Providing innovative and well co-ordinated tourism products is exceedingly important for tourism destinations. Consumers assess their travel experience as a whole and they associate destinations with the entire range of local producers and suppliers. Partnerships between the public and private sector and close co-operation between all local suppliers is key to the ability of destinations to offer quality products. Exceeding consumers’ expectations is therefore instrumental for the ability of both suppliers and destinations to attract visitors in the long term. Hence the competitiveness of each supplier locally as well as their distributors determines the competitiveness of destinations.
The future is on co-opetition. Local suppliers should co-operate rather than compete. Tourism suppliers at destinations need to mature and understand that they should not compete with each other at the destination level. Instead they should join forces and pool resources to develop and implement comprehensive marketing strategies which enable them to compete with other destinations.
The implementation of a comprehensive marketing strategy and mix which supports the competitiveness of the destination as well as small and medium tourism enterprises to enhance their competitiveness.
Information Communication Technologies (ICTs) have been transforming tourism globally. Developments in ICTs have undoubtedly changed both business practices and strategies as well as industry structures. If the past 20 years have seen an emphasis on technology per se, then since the Year 2000 we have been witnessing the truly transformational effect of the communications technologies. This has given scope for the development of a wide range of new tools and services that facilitate global interaction between players around the world.
Technology can improve the efficiency of all local suppliers and also provide tools for the development and delivery of differentiated tourism products. Provision of information on local facilities and attractions and the ability to reserve the whole range of tourism products determines the ability to attract the new and sophisticated types of tourism demand. Technology enables destinations to co-ordinate the entire range of products and services offered locally at the destination and to promote them globally by using Internet technologies. The provision of tailor made products becomes therefore much easier as consumers can assemble specialised products and construct their own itinerary.
The availability of information on local resources and services reduces the cost of individual travel and enables destinations to offer mass-customised services. One of the major benefits is the reduction of dependency on intermediaries for the distribution of tourism products. As a consequence, tourism suppliers are able to improve their negotiation power with powerful tour operators and can develop a healthier distribution mix. This is particularly significant for remote, peripheral and insular destinations where local principals and authorities have a great dependency on tourism for their life hood but lack expertise and resources to undertake comprehensive marketing campaigns. Destinations should also be utilised to optimise tourism impacts by providing an effective mechanism to bridge the expectations of both consumers and local residents with their experiences from tourism.
Increasingly, ICTs play a critical role for the competitiveness of tourism organisations and destinations as well as for the entire industry as a whole. Developments in search engines, carrying capacity and speed of networks have influenced the number of travellers around the world that use technologies for planning and experiencing their travels. ICTs have also changed radically the efficiency and effectiveness of tourism organisations, the way that businesses are conducted in the marketplace, as well as how consumers interact with organisations.
The ICT driven business processes re-engineering observed in the industry gradually generates a new paradigm-shift. This alters the structure of the entire industry and develops a whole range of opportunities and threats for all stakeholders. Not only ICTs empower consumers to identify, customise and purchase tourism products but they also support the globalisation of the industry by providing effective tools for suppliers to develop, manage and distribute their offerings worldwide.
The digital revolution that was introduced by the Internet, Intranet and Extranets provide unprecedented and unforeseen opportunities for productivity improvements, interactive management and dynamic marketing. In particular Social Media changed the way that organisations interact with consumers and how consumers are able to cocreate their experiences. As a result organisations and governments are now able to:
• Accelerate knowledge and information distribution;
• Apply knowledge management at the widest possible coverage;
• Increase their efficiency and productivity;
• Improve and shorten the decision making process
• Enhance their communication and co-ordination efficiency;
• Reduce their transportation, postage and communication costs; and support their interactivity with all stakeholders.
The technological revolution experienced through the development of the Internet has changed dramatically the market conditions for tourism organisations. ICTs evolve rapidly providing new tools for tourism marketing and management. They support the interactivity between tourism enterprises and consumers and as a result they reengineer the entire process of developing, managing and marketing tourism products and destinations. Constant innovation in applications of hardware, software and network developments means that only dynamic organisations, which can assess the requirements of their stakeholders and respond efficiently and effectively, will be able to outperform their competitors and maintain their long term prosperity.
This seminar targets primarily for the private sector owners/managers and destination marketers. The seminar will demonstrate to participants how ICT can be utilised for strengthening the organisation and to maximise the sales to tourists through technological solutions and social media.
Marketing and sales professionals from both the destination management organisations and also from tourism and hospitality business will benefit from the seminar as they will understand how to use eTourism for achieving competitive advantage, profitability and competitiveness.
Particularly, this expert seminar will offer valuable insight to hospitality, tourism and travel executive professionals, hospitality tourism and travel managers who are in change of strategic management, marketing and ICT technological development.
This seminar will focus on Technology enabled strategic management and marketing for tourism destinations and organisations. It will explore opportunities for Information Communication Technologies applications and social media for Hospitality and Tourism Organisations to promote tourism and engage the different stakeholders through social media and maximise the competitiveness of organisations.
The programme has a theoretical element and hands on approach for trainees to get involved through action learning.
The first day objectives:
At the end of the first day participants will gain insight and experiences in how Technology facilitates and enables strategic Tourism management and marketing. In addition, participants will be familiar with the latest concepts and developments regarding the following aspects:
• The tourism organisation stakeholders and the concepts of cocreation and coopetition
• External and internal factors of competitiveness
• SWOT and PEST analysis for the tourism industry
• Risk and possibility analysis – the factors affecting tourism
• Technological developments and some major trends in global tourism
• ICTs and their role in integrating the entire tourism industry and economy
• ICT developments and their profound impact on tourism organisations
• Technology and Strategic Tourism Management and Marketing
• Technological enablers for the hospitality and tourism industry
• Social Media, Web 2.0 and User Generated Content in tourism
• How to use the major channels – Facebook, Twitter, Blog, YouTube, Google+ for tourism
• How social media can achieve ultimate goals
• The sources of competitiveness for tourism and hospitality organisations
• How to manage global reputation and branding online and offline
• The management of tourism and hospitality brands across all channels
• Efficient and effective brand management at the time of crisis
• Social networking and engagement with tourism stakeholders
At the end of the second day participants are expected to explore agile technology for promotion, differentiation of tourism experiences
• Use technology to support hotels and tourism to create memorable experiences
• Find and target your audience on different platforms
• Create Cocreation and Memorable tourism experiences
• Dynamic Customer Engagement, Experience And Interactivity in global tourism
• Generate and distributing consumer tourism generated content
• Narrate the tourism experience through the eyes of the guest
• Protect and enhance brands and take advantage in the Web 2.0 environment
• Build experiences and holistic solutions for tourism
• Use technology to satisfy the tourists of the future
• Make customers brand ambassadors
• Adopt and fully exploit Social Media and Real time Service – the service of now
• Implement augmented reality applications and gamification
At the end of the seminar participants will be able to use technologies to manage and their strategic marketing techniques, increase sales, conversions, and maximise collective revenue for the destination. Specifically participants will be expected to:
• Understand the importance for ICTs and eTourism for the strategic and operational management of hospitality and tourism organisations.
• Appreciate the importance of strategic tourism marketing and management and use the analytical tools for diagnosis, prognosis and rapid action
• Use engagement with all partners and stakeholders for maximising value for money and time.
• Develop their eTourism strategy that takes into consideration the online branding of tourism and hospitality organisations in the Web 2.0 era.
• Understand the concept of cocreation and engage all stakeholders in managing online reputation.
• Realise how hospitality and tourism organisations can take advantage of Web 2.0 and the Social Media applications.
• Use the funnel: awareness, interest, information, purchase and bring improve conversion from social media users to purchasers.
• Develop action plans for maximising the engagement of all stakeholders by using all available platforms and applications.
8:00 − 8:30 / Arrival and registration
8:30 − 9:30 / Seminar overview and introduction
9:30 − 11:00 / Theory • Strategic Tourism Marketing and management in tourism
11:00 − 11:15 / Break (15 min)
11:15 − 13:15 / Case study: Strategic positioning and content for online presence
13:15 − 14:30 / Lunch Break
14:30 − 16:00 / Theory Managing global reputation and branding online and offline
16:00 − 16:15 / Break
16:15 − 17:15 / Case Study: Managing reviews and tripadvisor reports
8:00 − 8:30 / Arrival and registration
8:30 − 9:30 / Seminar recapitulations
9:30 − 11:00 / Theory Promotion and Sales on different tourism distribution channels
11:00 − 11:15 / Break
11:15 − 13:15 / Practicing skills exercise: Engage Consumers User Generated Content
13:15 − 14:30 / Lunch Break
14:30 − 15:45 / Theory Building Cocreation and Memorable experiences
15:45 − 16:00 / Break
16:00 − 17:15 / Case study and practicing skills exercise: Create Memorable Experiences
Strategically the goal of the programme is to improve insight into strategic management and marketing benefits it can bring to hospitality and tourism organisations through the use of technology. The participants will be guided in a very concise and condensed way, both on the strategic marketing methodologies and the practical applications of eTourism tools. They will gain inside knowledge in eTourism capabilities and approaches as well as appreciate the proactive and reactive strategies that ICTs can empower for hospitality and tourism organizations.
There will be demonstrations of:
• Methodologies and tools for strategic tourism marketing
• Strategies and strategic marketing actions from leading tourism destinations
• Best case examples from around the world
• Engagement with social media platforms, applications and networks
• eTourism applications and platforms and their usage
• Examples of effective ICT implementation in numerous hospitality and tourism organisations worldwide
• Successes and failures with real-life worldwide examples.
In addition this seminar will be highly interactive in order to explore further potential within their own context and realities.
Action learning real-life examples will be used
A number of action learning case studies and real life cases will be utilized to demonstrate how hospitality and tourism organizations have engaged with the emerging technologies for maximizing their profitability and competitiveness. This course will follow a very pragmatic approach, and discusses several examples and business cases.
Tools and Methods
The workshop/seminar programme will be a combination of presentations using PowerPoint slides, demonstrations of commercially available eTourism applications, group discussions, and case study evaluations, amongst others from Tourism Management and Harvard Business Review.
There will be available two portable PCs connected to a video projector and high speed Internet access. Power point presentations and flip charts will also be used. The seminar notes are going to be available to participants in hard copies, in electronic form on a CD and also available on line at www.digipro.com.cy. Digipro will have available the internet platform http://digipro.klab-project.net which is an innovative platform in allowing users share and knowledge and communicate on line, dynamically create forums upload documents etc. The platform was developed during the EU project KLAB www.Klab-project.net where Digipro participates as a project partner.
Record Keeping/ Administration
• Pre-registration online before getting access to the interview and cases
• Attendants Forms
• Evaluation of progress
• Self evaluation
• Evaluation of instructor
Workshop and Evaluation
Evaluation is conceptually related to the glass box approach, in which the primary objective is to gain a greater understanding of impact that the workshop has made to the participants. There will be continuous workshop assessments for evaluating and measuring the workshop effectiveness throughout the duration of the workshop. This is going to be performed with the aid of group work exercises, key lessons learned assessments, open discussions and plenary presentations. Depending on the level of the participants, the level of material and the online eTourism applications will be adapted accordingly.
The participants at the end of the workshop will be requested to fill out evaluation forms that will give their feedback in terms of the following key points: Their general views in regard to their participation to the workshop
• The extent that they have increased their knowledge, skill and perspective
• The relevance of the workshop to their daily activities
• The knowledge and effectiveness of the presenter
• The quality of the seminar material/handouts.
• The best seminar features/elements/issues raised
• Their willingness to participate in other seminar with the same presenter/training institution
Additionally there will be conducted an internal evaluation activity in regard to organisation administration and seminar management issue
Professor Dimitrios Buhalis is a Strategic Management and Marketing expert with specialisation in Technology and Tourism. He is Established Chair in Tourism and Deputy Director of the International Centre for Tourism and Hospitality Research (ICTHR) and Director of the John Kent Institute in Tourism at the School of Tourism, Bournemouth University and Professorial Observer at the Bournemouth University Senate. Professor Buhalis is leading eTourism research and is working with the Bournemouth team for introducing technology in all aspects of tourism research and teaching. In 2009 he led Bournemouth University successfully through the UNWTO.TedQual Certification Process and is the BU representative to the United Nations World Tourism Organisation. In recognition of his contribution, he was elected in August 2009, as a member of the International Academy for the Study of Tourism. In April 2010, Dimitrios was elected President of International Federation for Information Technologies in Travel and Tourism (IFITT).
He has been teaching tourism related subjects in more than 30 Universities around the world. He is regarded as an expert in the impacts of ICTs in the tourism industry and eTourism, the management of tourism distribution channels as well as strategic tourism marketing and management.
Dimitrios has been involved with a number of European Commission FP5 and FP6 projects and regularly advises the World Tourism Organisation, the World Tourism and Travel Council and the European Commission in the field of information technology and tourism. He has also been advising private sector organisations such TUI, Opodo.com, YouTravel.com, on the strategic aspects of their business.
He has written or co-edited a total of 14 books, including two books on the Future of Tourism. He has also published more than 80 articles in scholarly journals, books, conference proceedings and consultancy reports.
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