Wonderful Copenhagen has just announced the destination strategy that will lead it through 2020 and beyond. Written in consultation with Destination Think, the plan outlines seismic shifts in the DMO’s role, and begins by describing what Copenhagen will leave behind, with a wink and a smile:
“Wonderful Copenhagen concludes the end of the era of tourism, as we know it.
We pay our respects to the tourists of the past, the mass consumers and the passing days of disconnected tourist segmentation between business and leisure, city and countryside, culture and cycling.
We bid farewell to an era of tourism as an isolated industry bubble of culture and leisure experts.
We leave behind days of equating tourism marketing with glossy picture-perfect advertising.
We recognize the expiration of our role as the destination’s promotional superstar, the official Destination Marketing Organization (DMO) with authoritative consumer influence, broadcasting superiority and an exclusive right to promote and shape a destination.”
What comes after the end of tourism? “Localhood for everyone.”
Don’t worry, the sky isn’t falling. Wonderful Copenhagen places people at the centre of its vision and imagines that the destination’s future will be co-created by residents, industry, and visitors. In part, this emphasis comes in response to the impact tourism can have on the quality of life for residents, for better or worse. As European cities like Barcelona and Venice struggle with increasing visitation caused by mass tourism, some destinations (like Copenhagen) seek a solution in which tourism can provide a net benefit to locals and visitors alike.
“By declaring ‘localhood for everyone,’ Wonderful Copenhagen encourages its destination to think of its visitors as temporary residents, instead of as tourists,” says Destination Think’s Chief Strategist, William Bakker.
“As a resident, you’re part of the community, and you contribute to it. The shift here is that the tourism industry can also help visitors add value to the community, instead of asking permanent residents to exchange their quality of life for money.”
Bakker was part of the Think consulting team (led by city marketing expert Frank Cuypers) that reviewed Wonderful Copenhagen’s strategy before its release, measuring it against trends that affect the DMO’s role, as well as challenges and other requirements the DMO will face.
Wonderful Copenhagen has outlined five strategic coordinates to keep the destination on track:
- Shareability is king: To enable travellers, partners, and influencers to create shareable moments.
- Once attracted, twice valued: A strategy to encourage repeat visitation.
- Tomorrow’s business today: Attracting new visitors from growing markets.
- Co-innovation at heart: Opportunities for the industry to work together for the benefit of all.
- People-based growth: Making tourism a win-win scenario for residents and visitors. “Visitor growth in itself is not a goal. Increasing the value of visitors for all parties is.”
Click to read about and download Wonderful Copenhagen’s new strategic document.
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