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E-tourism_uploadUsing Technology to Manage Resources

The role of the Destination Management Organisation (DMO) is to provide a focal point for all the interdependent players:
• Visitors
• Industry
• Community
• Environment

This tourism ‘community’ includes:
• A number of government departments, including the sponsoring department
• Other official bodies
• Residents, whether they are employed in tourism or not, if they live in an area that is exploited by tourism
• Businesses – from the smallest owner-managed business to the largest corporations, and including the carriers and the intermediaries (such as agents, tour operators, conference organisers); and their trade representative bodies
… and of course, your customers, whether leisure visitors or business tourism clients.

The Destination should thus be seen as a ‘business community’, and to support the creation and operation of the community it is the task of the DMO to provide and operate e-business systems that will be the main media for these players to work together in managing and marketing the Destination. Their e-business systems should:
• Enable the DMO to communicate with all the players
• And enable the players to communicate with each other

The objective for the DMO is to be the facilitator of Destination teamwork, so that the interdependent elements of tourism are drawing up and working to a common agenda, supporting each other, and avoiding duplication. Efficient DMOs, to justify public and private sector investment in their organisations, observe guidelines including:
• Not duplicating what’s already happening and working well
• Aggregating existing product data from the industry, rather than compiling tourist information from scratch
• Not launching its own e-commerce operation if the private sector is, or can be helped, to provide it
• Encouraging and exploiting user-generated content (UGC) which in many areas has rapidly become equally important as information provided by the businesses and the intermediaries
• Taking a lead in co-ordinating new developments such as the use of mobile
• Working with partners, online and offline, to gather and distribute content about the destination through media that achieve greater coverage than can be produced by the DMO’s own activities alone
• Maintaining its core DMO roles: building the brand and promoting new business

E-marketing – summary of benefits and functions for DMOs
• Delivery of massive amounts of information in a user-friendly way: cost-effectiveness in conveying information and products on sale directly, cheaply and at short notice to prime prospects
• Brand-building, now made possible by the rapid spread of broadband connections, allowing users to experience dramatic imagery and animation, as well as enhanced communication and interaction
• Two-way interaction:
Between the DMO and the customer (B2C)
Between customers and other like-minded customers (C2C)
• Joining promotion with sales in a seamless manner, from promotional messages straight through to online purchasing
• Joining offline and online promotion together, to work in harmony so that traffic can be driven in both directions, web to brochures or telephone, telephone to web and so on
• Engaging with customers one-to-one but also using ‘one-to-many’ and ‘one to a selected few’ activities
• The facility to build integrated partnerships with other bodies, official and commercial, throughout the industry and outside it. Partnerships may work at many levels:
• Sharing market intelligence within the industry
• Promoting the DMO’s marketing opportunities and operating co-operative marketing schemes
• Gathering product data, via data feeds, and by hosting product data entry forms that suppliers can use to provide and update their information
• New joint product development
• An integrated and coherent approach to branding of the destination achieved jointly by national, regional, and local tourism organisations and by their public and private stakeholders
• Partnerships may also be interactive partnerships of customers who have shared interests, such as divers or walkers.

Whether the target audiences are end-customers, the media, or tour operators and retail agents in source markets, residents in the home community, or the home industry, DMOs require a wide set of e-marketing tools and techniques:
• Content – collected from partners and by direct DMO work, to form an accurate, timely, and comprehensive resource
• Content distribution – to partners in the destination to enhance their own sales messages, and to third-party media in source markets in order to extend the Destination’s reach
• Websites, including:
• Inspirational branding – dozens of pics, panarounds, lots of video, happy faces, happy tone of voice, consistency
• Information and linking to UGC
• Mapping, diary and itinerary planning tools
• Customer contact methods; at least 3 data capture methods
• Links to e-commerce
• Natural search engine optimisation
• RSS feeds from an to partners and site users
• Onsite research questionnaires, Yes/No polls
• Web analytics, reporting on the traffic to the site and how it is used
• Email marketing
• Online PR
• Online advertising
• Search engine marketing
• Display advertising
• Viral campaigns
• Encouraging UGC through social networking
• On 3rd-party travel sites
• On 3rd-party non-travel sites eg Flickr and YouTube
• On your site
• On blogs
• By promoting tagging
• In Wikis
• Mobile marketing
• Satnav content
• SMS services for travellers on arrival
• Mobile websites for potential visitors and travellers on arrival
• Podcasts
• Interactive digital TV
etourismfrontiers E-Tourism Frontiers Resources
Staying ahead of the game in the dynamic world of e-tourism can be a real challenge, especially for those of us in emerging markets. E-Tourism Frontiers aims to provide tourism and ICT professionals with the resources and guidance they need to succeed online. The material in this section is a general overview of the topics covered and resources provided in our training courses.

To gain full understanding and make maximum use of these resources, join on of our training seminars, which provide attendees with intensive hands training in online sales, marketing and management skills for both destinations and tourism companies. Our trainers are experienced professionals with extensive experience working in online tourism around the world, including first hand experience of working in emerging markets. We use live demonstrations of working websites and technologies and will give you the skills, resources and support to begin making changes to your business and use the web to improve your organization and business. For full information on our training seminars please see our training section.

The following is a basic overview of the topics that we cover, complete with more information and advice on each area:
What Does Social Media mean for Tourism?.
Online Travel Trends.
Social Networking and Travel.
Travel Social Networks.
New Technologies for Tourism.
Tourism eMarketing.
Destination Management.
Customer Relations Management (CRM).
Gathering Customer Data.
Email Marketing.
Website Design & Management.
Search Engine Optimization (SEO).
Web Content.
Content Management Systems.
Online Advertising.

E-Tourism Frontiers is a global programme to develop online tourism in emerging markets around the world.
Our aim is to open the developing world’s tourism trade to the world of online travel distribution and marketing- a sector in which the region has been left far behind- with very little inventory available to the online travel shopper. This situation threatens the sustainability and diversity of Tourism and the communities and environment that it supports.
We hold pro-active business driven conference events and training seminars featuring leading online tourism companies, experts and trainers- as well as regional road-shows targeting the travel trade, destination managers and National and regional tourism offices in all emerging markets, including the Middle East, Asia, Latin America, Eastern Europe and Scandinavia.

The success of our events speaks for itself and is changing the way both the public and private sector do business, manage their resources and market themselves globally, and creating new business relationships with leading international players and technology providers. We work with a range of major international sponsors to be sure that these events are of the highest international standards, as well as accessible and affordable to the complete spectrum of tourism players, including Small to Medium Enterprise (SMEs), Community and Eco-Tourism projects.
Our sponsor partners to date have included major global brands includingMicrosoft, VISA, Safaricom, Vodacom and Coca-Cola and many more together with regional tourism and ICT authorities. Our events have been attended and opened by Ministers and Vice Presidents- and attended by a diverse range of tourism players, from Multinational CEOs to University tourism students.

This article is quoted from E-TOURISM FRONTIERS.

The article is uploaded by Majbritt Magnussen, administrator on ‘Views On Tourism’. Please join the online Views On Tourism network and discussion group in order to achieve personal goals as well as encourage a sustainable tourism development in Bangladesh and South Asia. Read more about this group and how to become a member here.

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Posted in Best practice, Cooperation and network, Development, Education and qualification, Market knowledge, Performance and management, Policy, Sustainability.

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