How can destinations adapt to attract the domestic market and restart tourism?
With the staycation set to become the new travel trend as restrictions ease, how can destinations adapt to attract the domestic market and restart tourism? This is a key question for the industry which sees the staycation as a solution. The staycation is a movement born from economic crisis and ecological awareness and represents a prominent force for reviving the industry and the local economy.
With the staycation set to become the new travel trend as restrictions ease, how can destinations adapt to attract the domestic market and restart tourism? This is a key question for the industry which sees the staycation as a solution. The staycation is a movement born from economic crisis and ecological awareness and represents a prominent force for reviving the industry and the local economy. We dedicate our twelfth Tourism Impact call to discussing the staycation and the new opportunities it presents to DMOs and the industry.
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On this week’s Tourism Impact call, we were joined by Stine Selmer Andersen and Sarah Woodall from Visit Greenland. In a full interview with #DTTT, they discuss their inspiring staycation campaign that incorporates #DTTT's Support Tourism. Impact Real People. Initiative and shared key insights about their domestic product development, the opportunities the staycation presents, and their long-term strategy for sustainable tourism. Here are the key takeaways.
Create a Concept that Connects with the Domestic Market
As a destination, Greenland is not reliant on domestic tourism, therefore it had to adapt its product and shift its strategy to cater to a more familiar audience. Its inspiring staycation campaign was developed in five weeks from the initial brainstorm to the launch of the website. The idea of the staycation is that Greenlanders are able to take advantage of the current situation and get to know their own country.
In order to connect with the local market, Visit Greenland created a very visual campaign that tapped into the bucket list concept. The campaign is based on #DTTT’s impact heart and the statement “Our wonderful country”. The campaign website is built in Greenlandic and Danish, with a segment dedicated to friends and family, which is one of the main focuses of the campaign. The message from Visit Greenland to its local market is that now is a great time to fulfil your dreams and do what you’ve always wanted to do in Greenland. It's an evergreen concept that can work all year round. To provide incentives for people to travel locally, Visit Greenland devised three good reasons for its citizens to have a holiday in Greenland which are:
In addition to these reasons, Visit Greenland created a music video which was a love song for Greenland. It created an open invitation that showed people what Greenland offered.
In order to reach local markets, DMOs must follow Visit Greenland’s example and create a concept that connects with local people and enables them to see their destination and its benefits in a new light.
Develop an Affordable and Adaptable Product
As domestic travel was deemed expensive by local Greenlanders, Visit Greenland had to adapt the product to create an affordable travel experience. The key question was what could inspire people to travel and spend money in their country? A concept usually reserved for international tourists. The answer was the creation of package trips for locals, offering affordable hotels and travel experiences. Normally locals would spend their money on international travel but now they had the incentive to spend money locally.
To promote the package trips, a website was developed providing an overview of all the package trips available in Greenland. It was designed to make domestic travel easier and to encourage locals to spend money on different things. Making the tourism product in the country more affordable and accessible allowed Greenlanders the chance to see regions of the country they had never seen and discover new places and experiences.
For DMOs, creating an affordable and adaptable product for the domestic market will ensure a sustainable income for local businesses and prepare the destination for when it is ready to welcome the international market.
Collaborate with Industry partners to Overcome Challenges
As a destination, Greenland was not heavily impacted by COVID-19 cases, but it was impacted by the travel restrictions placed on international visitors. Visit Greenland reacted fast to the crisis and was able to create something positive out of a challenging scenario. To develop an affordable product for the local market required the industry coming together quickly and effectively. Visit Greenland worked closely with local businesses and tour operators, advising on new pricing and adapting the product to the local market.
To draw the locals to regions further away, DMOs worked together to create content and provided vital intelligence to industry businesses..By working together, Visit Greenland and its stakeholders were able to develop the staycation experience and make tourism more accessible to local people. For Visit Greenland, it meant reshaping the offer for the domestic market by marketing in their own language, understanding target groups and tapping into people’s interest and motivations. They understood that the locals had different interests to tourists and adapted their offer to reflect this.
In the current crisis every DMO should be working with stakeholders to overcome challenges and develop solutions. It is a great opportunity to improve the destination with new innovations that will have a positive impact when the destination reopens.
Identify Industry Trends and Implement Ideas
The staycation trend was identified by Visit Greenland long before the crisis. It had developed a dialogue with the industry to identify consumer needs and trends and incorporate them into product development. By looking at neighbouring Nordic countries, Visit Greenland saw the staycation trend emerge as part of the efforts to support sustainability and sustainable tourism. As a result of this, Visit Greenland began developing the staycation concept with the aim of marketing it to neighbouring Nordic countries. In identifying new tourism trends and observing public statements, Visit Greenland was able to design new sustainable products. The crisis has offered Visit Greenland the opportunity to develop its staycation product and make it a reality.
It is important that during this time DMOs are able to identify consumer needs and sentiment. By following consumer trends, DMOs will be able to react faster and recover quicker to respond to the ‘new normal’. Post COVID-19, travel will be very different and this is a great time for DMOs to develop and new product that reflects the future of tourism.
Develop a Sustainable Long-term Strategy
Greenland’s reopening strategy is defined by the Danish Government, who at present has only allowed a select few countries to travel to Greenland. Due to the entry requirements of international travellers, the staycation will remain an important campaign for Visit Greenland and the local tour operators for some time to come. Greenland is currently in the staycation phase but is now nearing the closer to home stage. Visit Greenland understand that the staycation movement will create a change in behaviour, with more emphasis on domestic tourism and sustainability. The concept will be a high priority for some time which is why it has been incorporated into Visit Greenland’s long-term strategy.
Visit Greenland believes in acting on ideas, thinking big and taking risks. Its success has come from taking the time to think about what is the best thing to do. Its long-term strategy was developed before the crisis, but is still very relevant today. The main focus is on sustainability and tourism that is good for Greenland, it wants to attract the right kind of visitor that will benefit the destination.
At #DTTT we have been inspired by Visit Greenland’s campaign. It is a best practice in developing a powerful, inspiring staycation campaign that connects with local people and encourages them to discover their beautiful country. It is a great example of a destination that has seamlessly adapted its product for the local market and given them a whole new experience of their country.