Building a Recovery Strategy that attracts the audiences in the 'new normal'
The old way of targeting, converting and growing needs a revision. Gone are 'emerging markets' and 'disposable income' as audience criteria. We need to hit reset.
Now more than ever, it is important to be sensitive to the concerns of visitors and to provide assurance with new business values. We have to realise the huge need for supporting the many individuals in tourism who depend on recovery.
We have been joined by more than 30 people from all across Slovenia: passionate and curious, they have explored new ways of boosting digital and innovation in their organisations.
Their different strengths, from creativity through design, to gamification, have aligned under the common love for their destination and the shared desire of contributing to the recovery of the tourism industry.
Targeting Post-Covid: Audiences, Channels and Tactics
To begin with, we have explored what targeting after COVID-19 means, running through the changes in the business model of organisations, the shifts in consumers' behaviour and the most surprising trends.
There are four values every destination cannot miss, and these are Transparency, Openness, Safety and Sustainability. In the 'New Normal', these are unconditional elements that play a role in helping visitors and consumers decide if they like and can trust you or not.
Unsurprisingly, people's behaviour has changed a lot over the last few months. Their expectations have shifted and every brand needs to start taking these changes into serious considerations. Self-care is the most precious thing someone can reserve time for, private digital spaces are more attractive than open and public ones, storytelling is getting richer and people are starting to consume culture in a more fluid way.
Recovery Campaign Concept
Moving the conversation to how to build a Recovery Campaign, it was crucial to highlight two big objectives: the first one is, of course, advertising Slovenia as a destination that will meet the needs and expectations of visitors in the new normal; the second one, still very relevant, providing businesses with the guidelines to build their own marketing strategy.
The post-pandemic digital world is also full of innovative opportunities: some of them were already there and have been reinforced, some didn't exist and now are on the rise.
One of our favourite trends is the rise of the so-called good influence: we must all bear in mind that curated content and ideas from trusted sources beat paid content. Celebrities and big influencers are scrutinised and criticised continuously, whether more human, smaller influencers are considered as part of the friend circle.
One-million dollar question: why are people consuming digital content?
The digital consumer in 2020 is consuming digital content for three main reasons: engage, learn and connect. Are we surprised by this behaviour? We believe that there has been a substantial change in the way people consume digital content. We had already seen some of these ways of consuming content, but only recently they have reinforced their preponderance.
Digital Workflow Optimisation & Automation
Winning visitors in the new normal is all about detail. During the workshop, we got straight to work in some interactive sessions. In one exercise we wanted to go deep, breaking down every touchpoint of the visitor journey in order to both optimise and automate interactions.
How can you reach an advanced level, not only targeting but refining the message according to the digital signals your visitors emit which tell you they're interested?
How can you engage across more touchpoints, with greater relevance and sophisticate content personalisation, responses and queries to persuade, convince and convert?
New Visitor Journey for the New Normal
The Visitor Journey is now being influenced by the changes in behaviour and in the way we use technology. Destinations who were succeeding in creating extremely ultra-rich content in order to inspire a wider international audience, have shrunk their promotion, targeting hyperlocal markets and creative incentives to discover the destination during staycation activities.
Together with more elaborated content, it is interesting to see how destinations have adapted to the more practical needs of their audiences. It is relevant to explore 'less digital' tools to engage with the audiences, educate and inform, keeping the brand identity of the destination at the core.
Increasingly, domestic partnerships have demonstrated to be able to reinforce the link between the identity of the destination and out-of -the-industry brands. Food, drinks, culture, sports are part of the destination brand and are now more than ever relevant in enhancing the promotion and boosting the awareness of the destination.
We have uncovered some of the main shifts that happened in 2020 and we have listed different trends and needs in the market. Now, it is extremely relevant to be open and blunt about these changes and the way businesses and brands have decided to pivot, transforming this in an opportunity to show endless passion and resilience.
Just to wrap it up, we have realised how much we have to say when it comes to brainstorming ideas and facilitating co-creation. This is what we love! Being joined by such amazing people has just made everything more enjoyable. It's great to see the passion and love for tourism and their destinations!
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