Virtual reality (VR) is among the most important emerging technology platforms that destinations must consider over the next few years. VR is now developing beyond a science-fiction dream into a household consumer product with sales expected to skyrocket to 24 million units by 2018 and half a billion by 2025. This leads to a few […]
Destination Marketing Strategy
Leading a destination marketing organization (DMO) is an amazing opportunity. If you’re looking for a challenge, destination marketing is surprisingly complex. The industry is great, the people who work at DMOs are smart, but the category and the marketplace surrounding it is in flux. Still, the efforts and outcomes from the work done by DMOs […]
Many destination marketers are seeking to define and optimize niche experiences to increase visitation from passionate travellers. A recent article at tourism-review.com highlights a clear example by describing a recent increase in nautical tourism in the Mediterranean Sea: “This improvement is due partly to the exceptional weather conditions of the summer season, partly to the […]
Destination marketing organizations (DMOs) often need to measure what they can’t manage. A marketer’s typical job is to create demand for a product, but countless external factors affect visitation, making the effectiveness of destination marketing difficult to measure and communicate succinctly. At Simpleview Summit 2016, Destination Think!’s Chief Strategist & Partner William Bakker tackled this […]
Many destination marketing organizations (DMOs) have a real aversion to risk. For some, the need to justify their funding to government stakeholders can cause fear of pursuing newer models and strategies. Meanwhile, leading destination marketers are isolated, finding themselves unable to make the changes that are necessary to address the critical problems faced by today’s […]
The Destination Think! team has researched the challenges faced by the world’s leading destination marketers. Through an extensive series of 2016 interviews with dozens of destination marketing organization (DMO) leaders from Norway to Australia, Israel to Greenland, the Maldives to the Netherlands and from Canada south to the USA, we have learned the most important […]
Profit and Planet – A new way of thinking about the supply chain. Can we see problems as solutions? There is enormous disruption affecting the destination marketing industry. Over the past six months, the Destination Think! team has invested a significant amount of time conducting research on these challenges. Through an extensive series of interviews with more […]
Cost and Revenue: New ideas imply new business models. Can we apply creativity to rethink the way we produce revenue? There is enormous disruption affecting the destination marketing industry. Over the past six months, the Destination Think! team has invested a significant amount of time conducting research on these challenges. Through an extensive series of […]
Community and Collaboration: People not product are your most important assets. Can you market a destination and attract visitors without engaging residents? There is enormous disruption affecting the destination marketing industry. Over the past six months, the Destination Think! team has invested a significant amount of time conducting research on these challenges. Through an extensive […]
Some brands are using new technology to interact with consumers in more sophisticated ways. According to Warc, Heineken has recently begun using near-field communication (NFC) technologies to use consumer location to better “engage consumers at the precise moments that matter.” This “moment marketing” is all about timing. If marketers can better understand the user experience […]
Destinations, take heed: your locals have plenty to say about the place they live. As word-of-mouth recommendations move online and stories travel from the ground up, residents hold the greatest power to shape perceptions that affect tourism. This is especially true in times of crisis, when tourism businesses suffer due to global factors beyond a […]
More than ever, your destination marketing organization (DMO)’s success is tied to your industry’s ability to market well and deliver excellent experiences. In this time of transition, the old way of destination marketing is rapidly being replaced with a new environment that demands a completely new approach. The changes destination marketers must know about are […]
The use of big data has become pervasive across the world’s leading business organizations. Making data-driven decisions is essential to business planning, and our ability to search, share, curate, manage and analyze information is now more nuanced and complex than ever before. With so much valuable consumer data available, destination marketing organizations (DMOs) must become […]
Destinations on Google is a brand new mobile search feature that offers the ability to compare trip prices, dates and locations. Users can explore itineraries and compare travel options to help plan an upcoming vacation by searching for a place name followed by the word “destination” or “vacation.” It’s a shiny new tool, but what does […]
Which metrics can best help a destination marketing organization (DMO) make good decisions and demonstrate its value? Without having the right corporate measuring tools, you as a DMO decision maker risk starting down a path that could negatively impact the future of your DMO, your funding, and your industry. Healthy strategies, objectives and priorities should […]
In his newest project, Destination Think!’s Senior Strategic Consultant Frank Cuypers and his university students in Antwerp, Belgium interview city residents to ask a question that should be on the minds of all city marketers: “If your city fell off the map, what would the world miss?” Visit the “Why Your City?” Facebook page to […]
Destination marketing organizations (DMOs) aren’t always known for making brave decisions. Leaders need to know how best to position their organization for the future, while marketing teams need direction on where to invest and how to measure success. And often, members of a DMO’s marketing implementation team can discover ways to innovate. By demonstrating the […]
Managing industry stakeholders is one of the biggest challenges every destination marketing organization faces. Dealing with politics, while proving value and relevancy, is almost always an issue. Even with the best intentions, some industry stakeholders may not understand that their own actions can impact the efficiency and effectiveness of their destination marketing organization (DMO). If […]
“For a destination marketing organization (DMO), strategy means formulating a vision for providing lasting, sustainable value for residents, visitors and companies. Strategy is the shortest road between your mission and your vision.” We trust a driver who keeps his or her eyes on the road instead of on the dashboard. Tracking speed and mileage is […]
Digital technology and online platforms have disrupted the communication landscape. As a result, promotion through visitor engagement has become essential to effective destination marketing. “DMOs were originally developed as an intermediary for a marketplace where suppliers controlled the flow of destination information, the development of products as well as the related sales promotion and distribution […]
As digital word-of-mouth marketing gets more sophisticated, destination marketing organizations (DMOs) must consider how to stay relevant to their visitors and stakeholders. The answer lies in leading the industry through a true customer-centric process that uses design thinking to better understand the customer journey. Peer recommendations are crucial In the past, destinations may have felt […]
WANTED: Strategic leadership for effective organizational change. METHOD: A no-nonsense, practical guide to three things you can do to transform your impact. The word “strategy” has been frequently overused and abused in recent times. Has anyone ever asked you for an “un-strategic” plan? Of course not. But what exactly is meant by “strategic leadership” and […]
Some experts will say that they can solve the problems you face within a changing industry, but the best way your destination marketing organization can adapt is through responsive leadership from within. Frank Cuypers, Senior Strategic Consultant for Destination Think!, explains four types of leadership. If you’ve attended enough marketing conferences, there’s a good chance […]
Too many destination marketers confuse “advertising,” “promotion” and “marketing.” Don’t be one of them. Getting the terminology correct will make your investments much more effective. There has been a lot of discussion in recent years about destination marketing organizations (DMOs) morphing into destination management organizations. While managing the product is becoming increasingly important in driving […]
How can your destination truly understand what its visitors are going through? Use an “upvoting” site to take the temperature. Search your destination’s name on sites like reddit.com and imgur.com for a quick snapshot that shows which aspects of your destination pique the interest of the online community. Tools like this are a useful supplement […]
What is the ROI of social media? Six destination DMOs joined together to create a framework to measure the financial value as a result of social media activities. Get the Potential on Investment whitepaper and calculator here.
Does your destination or tourism business offer the kinds of things that actually get people talking? In this blog, we explain the value of conversation starters, or social objects, that help you ignite the stories that people will tell others.
How do your social, email and advertising channels work together? In this blog post we introduce the Channels section of our Destination Management and Marketing Model.
What’s the importance of storytellers? A destination’s communication strategy now needs to shift from focusing on a few mass publishers, to focusing on many niche publishers. As a DMO, you need to find the right storytellers to reflect your destination.
Understanding your potential audiences is very important, and destinations should constantly research them and learn from their visits. In this blog (Part 5 of our series), we’ll evaluate the role of Target Audiences.
Getting to the root of the story: the destination experience. Experiences on the ground turn into the stories that people tell each other. DMOs need to take a hands-on approach to leading its industry in improving its experiences.
For a DMO, storytelling is critical. Destination marketing is creating your own stories in different formats, and for different platforms. But this is not enough anymore. The internet is outnumbering you in stories about your destination.