How can you ensure your business remains ahead of your competition as worldwide tourism growth is slowing down?
It's not difficult, but you need to take time to think and plan.
In my discussions with visitors, tourism operators, inbound operators, wholesalers, RTO’s, Tourism New Zealand and from the international research I’ve done, these are the trends I see for the coming year(s).
To operate a successful tourism business, it's important to take time out and work ON your business.
Planning, executing, learning, reading. If you make this a habit, and set a specific time each week to work on this, I can guarantee you that your business will benefit.
If you need help improving your capability, do check out our:
Have a good rest of your week!
Kind regards, Marijke
Where do the images you have on your website, or the ones you distribute to other websites, agents, media etc. end up?
It can be useful to know this for several reasons:
To find out where your images are used, use Google image search. Here's how:
1. Go to Google Images.
2. Click on the little camera icon in the search bar.
3. You can either paste the image URL, or click "Upload an image" and upload the relevant image.
4. The search results will appear - scroll down the page a bit to see on what website they appear.
PRO tip: do rename your images with keywords before uploading them onto your website. This is great for your search results. Simply right click the image, click 'Rename', then rename it and save.
Till next time, Marijke
The key to achieve tourism distribution success is not rocket science, but it does take a bit of work. The key is to spread your distribution and risk and not put all your eggs in one basket.
A few years ago I had a client come to me who said he’d lost 45% of his business. The reason: he received 45% of his bookings from one supplier, who decided to go into competition with him.
Your online (and offline) visibility is essential so that your potential customers learn about you when they’re planning their holiday. A well thought-through distribution strategy is therefore essential.
Successful businesses spread their distribution by selling their products through:
Set specific goals of what you want to achieve and get into the habit of spending a few hours each week – preferably the same day/time - to work ON your business. You will achieve the things you set out to do and build a successful business.
If you need help with this, consider getting a coach or join one of our tourism business success programmes. (note: the next Tourism Business Success Programme starts next week on the 29th of August 2019 - register now!)
If you use Instagram for your business, you will have noticed that the number of likes of a post is no longer showing. Why is this?
It’s part of a trial carried out in Australia, New Zealand, Ireland, Italy, Japan and Brazil to remove the pressure on how many likes a post received. Instagram says: “We want your followers to focus on what you share, not on how many likes your post gets. During this test, only you will be able to see the total number on your posts”.
Yeah, right! Instagram is in it to make money. By removing this feature, brands and influencers will be forced to spend more money on boosting posts and advertising.
A decrease in post likes has already been observed by many operators. Have you noticed this?
Social media is an important marketing tool for tourism businesses, but also one that you don’t have any control over. And that's a risk.
So what can you do about it?
If you are too reliant on one type of marketing or distribution, I’d advise you to start thinking about spreading your risk. The reason is that if one supplier, or social media platform, Online Travel Agency or wholesaler falls over or changes the way they work with you, you don’t want that to affect your entire business.
A diversified marketing strategy that spreads the risk is the way to go. Especially now that tourism is softening, it’s time to work smarter and plan strategically for the next few years.
What are you doing in terms of local, domestic and international distribution, content marketing, digital marketing, email marketing, social media marketing, partnering with other businesses? Are you keeping up with marketing trends? Do you have sound marketing systems?
Winter is a good time to work ON your business and the businesses that do this will grow compared with businesses that are complacent. I’ve seen this over and over!
So, set some time aside to work on your business so you can focus on your planning. Go off-site for a few days or join the Tourism Business Success Programme if you need help. Next start: 29th August 2019 in Queenstown, NZ.
Last month, I met with the Australia/NZ Sales Manager of Tripadvisor in Australia. He mentioned that the key to ranking high on Tripadvisor is:
Quantity of reviews
With regards to quantity of reviews; there are more and more tools out there that send automated emails to every customer encouraging them to write a review. You can also create a miniposter or sheet with a QR code linking directly to your review page. You can hang this in your reception, in your transport van or put it in an in-room compendium. Or you can send them an email with the link to your Tripadvisor review page yourself.
Recency of reviews
These tools also address the ‘recency’ of reviews. If your last review is several months old, Tripadvisor doesn’t rank you as high as they rate the reviews as less relevant.
Now, that’s all good, but what do businesses have in common that are at the top of review sites? And not just Tripadvisor, also Google Reviews, Airbnb reviews, Online Travel Agency reviews etc.
Quality of reviews!
The ‘quality’ of reviews is the most important factor and they don’t just happen by accident. People mostly write reviews if they've had a good experience and they're happy to spread the word for you.
From my own experience in working with high-ranking businesses, here's what these operators have in common:
So, have a look at your Tripadvisor reviews and research those of high-ranking operators. What can you learn from it?
Interested in taking your business to the next level? Then check out the next start of the Tourism Business Success Programme on Thursday 29th of August 2019 in Queenstown. This course is registered with New Zealand Trade & Enterprise and up to 50% funding is available for businesses who have been operating for at least one year and have fewer that 50 staff. (see website for full details)
Marijke Dunselman. Click here to read more about us!