In Week 5 of the #DTTT’s Weekly Tourism Industry Impact Call series, we followed the progress of more destinations as we learnt about their recovery strategies. Sharing perspectives and solutions with a wide-range of key industry experts. Each session is providing more clarity of the COVID-19 situation from an industry perspective, and the impact it is having worldwide. In our key takeaways we captured the latest insights.
Every Tuesday at 14:00 GMT / 15:00 CET, we will hold a weekly 30 minute 'Tourism Impact Call' to give the lay of the land in terms of what's happening, how the industry is responding and we will provide a weekly summary. Open to all, every perspective welcome. Join Call
Week 5 - 14/04/2020
This week we welcomed Visit Inverness Loch Ness and industry expert Giovanna Tosetto, who shared their insights and recovery strategies. The priority for many destinations now is to support local businesses and focus on regional tourism. Many destinations are now starting to prepare for recovery, with initiatives in place that involve the local communities and collaborative DMO efforts.
Key takeaways from the industry
Destinations are the new resource hubs
In responding to the local community and visitors, destinations are becoming a key resource hub, not just to potential visitors but to locals who are sourcing shopping, gifts and amenities online. Antwerp Tourism is a great example of this, having created an online e-shop, bringing shops and restaurants in Antwerp to people at home. Antwerp contacted businesses that were closed to get them to sign up and formed a successful collaboration. This initiative is key to supporting local businesses.
Local businesses must go digital
The impact of COVID-19 is not as limited as we hope it would be. The remote lifestyle is likely to go on for quite some time. Therefore businesses need to adapt and increase their online presence by staying visible and top of people’s minds. Businesses must go digital in order to reach their potential customers who now have plenty of time on their hands at home. It is essential for business recovery that a business is seen as open, accessible and ready to welcome customers.
Destinations need to invest in digital experiences
To capture the imagination and attention of potential visitors, destinations need to become more creative with the experiences they are offering. Digital experiences such as virtual tours, online events and live streams are now becoming key features on many DMOs websites. There is no certainty as to when people will be able to travel again, therefore destinations must bring themselves to potential visitors. Digital experiences can enhance a destination by showcasing all of its USPs and offerings to a captive audience. The use of digital technology such as Augmented Reality (AR), Virtual Reality (VR) and Mixed Reality (MR) can transform a destination and inspire visitors to book a live visit.
Destination product and businesses must adapt to survive
Seasonality and businesses closing present challenges for many destinations. Visit Inverness Loch Ness has confirmed that since COVID-19, businesses that usually shut for winter now have to stay open. They are working with large businesses to create a Winter Destination Pass, developing a better product to be ready for recovery. DMOs must use this time to review their products and see if they can improve them and adapt them. Create a product that addresses the issue of seasonality to ensure a year round revenue for the destination.
Diversify the destination’s offering
Visit Inverness Loch Ness have implemented a strong marketing strategy. During COVID-19, they have encouraged businesses and members of the community to share their stories. They have launched a new promotion video, encouraging potential visitors to take time now to think about Scotland. Being cautious about revenue streams, Visit Inverness Loch Ness have diversified the destination’s offering to find new revenue streams. The destination has adapted so that people can have a holiday with social distancing.
With the narrative changing quickly, Visit Inverness Loch Ness are reminding people what they have to offer, why they are unique and are developing a better product that will suit future visitors and the community. Visit Inverness Loch Ness is focused on collaboration and sharing visitors with destinations close by. They are expanding and extending the destination’s offering. Cutting back on anything that does not benefit the recovery plan.
Destination recovery strategy will be led by local people
A destination’s recovery strategy will be led by local people on what they can offer. By implementing strategies at a local level, a destination will be able to recover more effectively. Industry expert Giovanna Tosetto, reiterates that in order to achieve recovery, destination’s must involve the local community. They must use visitors' memories, share experiences and promote a healthier destination. Working with locals and participating in online training to keep everyone updated. Developing a new offer with the locals around nature and the different ways to appreciate the destination.
These are some of the takeaways from our fifth weekly tourism impact call.The key focus for DMOs now is to support small businesses which need to be up and running for tourists. They must provide a hub of online and digital resources that can benefit the locals and visitors as the destination prepares for recovery. DMOs must review their destination’s product, diversify, extend and expand it so that it is a better product. Present a new offer that shows a different way to appreciate the destination. Create inspiring digital experiences and focus on delivering a product that meets the needs of the post COVID-19 traveller.
Recovery must remain the key focus, and destinations must remain agile and adaptable in order to achieve it.
More from #DTTT
In June we present:Creating an Inspiring Staycation Campaign with Visit Greenland – Weekly Tourism Impact Call: Week 12DTTT · Creating an Inspiring Staycation Campaign with Visit Greenland 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 [...]#Staycation #recovery #COVID-19 #strategy #tourism #Visit Greenland
In May we present:What’s the appetite for Travel? with Beautiful Destinations – Weekly Tourism Impact Call: Week 11DTTT · What's the appetite for travel? with Beautiful Destinations Recovery is now in sight for many destinations and much is being done to improve destinations to make them safe and ready for travellers when they arrive. Whilst the focus has been on the impact to destinations for much of the pandemic, this has now [...]#recovery #COVID-19 #beautiful-destinations #industry #tourism #travel
In May we present:Sustainability Opportunities for Destination Recovery with Dr Cara Augustenborg – Weekly Tourism Impact Call: Week 10
Sustainability is a key issue for the industry as it prepares for recovery. The fast-moving pandemic has been severely disrupting tourism and its impact will change the industry, academic engagement, and customer behaviour. The question many destinations are now asking is how can we be sustainable post COVID-19? We dedicate our tenth Tourism Impact call […]#ecotourism #recovery #COVID-19 #sustainability #industry #tourism
In May we present:Digitalisation and Sustainability solutions for recovery – Weekly Tourism Impact Call: Week 9
As part of our efforts to react and support the industry, the #DTTT began hosting our popular Tourism Impact calls 2 months ago. Now going into the ninth consecutive week, we reflect on what has been an interesting and insightful journey so far. In many lively discussions, we’ve shared perspectives about COVID-19 impact, destination strategy […]#recovery #COVID-19 #sustainability #digitalisation #industry #tourism
In May we present:The Nordics COVID-19 Response
How have the Nordic countries responded to the crisis? At the #DTTT, we have seen different approaches throughout the Nordic region and wanted to find out more. In a highly insightful interview we brought together the Tourism boards representing the capital cities of Norway, Sweden, Finland and Denmark to discuss their response to the COVID-19 […]#The Nordics #Response #COVID-19 #DMOs #marketing #strategy
In May we present:What travel will look like in the future with Doug Lansky – Weekly Tourism Impact Call: Week 8
In our highly anticipated eighth Tourism Impact call, we discussed the different approaches of destinations who are at various stages of the recovery process. Recovering destinations are now looking for innovative product solutions as restrictions begin to ease and businesses start to re-open. Whilst for other destinations their recovery plans are still at the research […]#Doug Lansky #COVID-19 #DMOs #industry #strategy #tourism