Digital destinations workshop at Tourism Management Institute conference
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Digital destinations workshop at Tourism Management Institute conference



Workshop at the TMI annual convention under the theme “Broadening Our Horizons”, reporting on the outcomes of the project to date.

Workshop at the TMI annual convention under the theme “Broadening Our Horizons”, reporting on the outcomes of the project to date.



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  • Digital Olympians: (Sam @ NF Activities 10:59-11:30) and (David @ Highcliffe Castle 14:19-14:53) <br /> Apps Fab (Cheryl @ Daisybank Cottage B&B 10:35-11:40) <br /> Online Crusaders ( <br /> AppPrentices (Paul @ Rumsey Holiday Homes 09:33-10:59) <br /> Digital Dragons <br /> Social Maniacs <br />
  • Georgi 77 <br /> Shelley 67 <br />

Digital destinations workshop at Tourism Management Institute conference Digital destinations workshop at Tourism Management Institute conference Presentation Transcript

  • Digital Destinations workshop Tourism Management Institute conference Broadening Our Horizons LinkedIn (digital destinations group) @PhilipAlford | @SchoolofTourism #DDBU
  • The project aims • The project aims to create templates of best online marketing practice for the visitor economy sector and to create a ‘learning destination’. • Position on-line marketing as a central strategy for your business. • A strategic approach is essential, effectively managed and measured • This programme will help you to maximise your potential and impact, create and share best practice • On-line marketing is developing quickly and this programme will help you identify and develop the best routes for your organisation
  • Aims - summary To create a knowledge network for the creation and sharing of small business digital marketing best practice and knowledge. To identify the determinants of small business engagement with the Internet.
  • Economic and Social Research Council “We are the UK's largest organisation for funding research on economic and social issues. We support independent, high quality research which has an impact on business, the public sector and the third sector. Our total budget for 2012/13 is £205 million. At any one time we support over 4,000 researchers and postgraduate students in academic institutions and independent research institutes.” More information at:
  • Importance of small businesses • In the UK micro enterprises account for around 87 per cent of hospitality businesses • 91.8% of businesses in the EU are micro (less than 10 employees) (European Small Business Alliance 2013) • EU FP7 funding program to support research in support of SMEs • Web-checkers tourism SME LinkedIn group (Fáilte Ireland) • Support programs provided by National and Regional DMO • Federation of Small Businesses
  • Why small businesses need help • Annual turnover rate of 23% for tourism businesses • Small businesses in general lag behind with online marketing • However despite the significance of small businesses in the visitor economy, “most studies of tourism SMEs have focused on conditions of entry and paid very limited attention to business development and growth processes” (Pearce and Butler 2010: 83). Pearce, D. G. and R. Butler (2010). Tourism research: a 20-20 vision / edited by Douglas G. Pearce and Richard W. Butler, Oxford: Goodfellow. Shaw, G., & Williams, A. M. (2010). Tourism SMEs: changing research agendas and missed opportunities. In D. Pearce, & Butler. (Eds.), Tourism Research: A 20:20 vision. Oxford: Goodfellow Publishers. Chapter 7.
  • Support for small tourism operators - England
  • Supporting small businesses - NI
  • Supporting small businesses - Wales
  • Supporting small businesses - Scotland
  • Formation of overall project group • • • • • Recruit 60 ‘visitor economy’ businesses – diverse membership Divided into six 10-strong knowledge networks / sub groups 6 sub-groups spread over geographic area Each group has a leader / champion Each group features a mix of businesses in terms of: – Size – Sector – Skills and knowledge • • • • • • Case studies of digital marketing engagement from each group Overall focus on co-production and co-delivery of knowledge 60 student placements as part of Digital Marketing course at BU 4 ‘official’ seminars at BU 4 ‘action learning’ cluster meetings Ongoing communication via online channels
  • 60 Organisations • • • • • • • Accommodation Arts & Culture Conference & Events Education & Outdoor Adventure Attractions Retail DMO
  • Criteria for selecting applicants The criteria include: •Current level of online marketing •Aspirations •Level of commitment •Geographic location •Size of business •Sector
  • Application form • Please tell us what particularly inspired/motivated you to apply for this programme. “Having recognised the importance in the fast growing nature of digital/ online marketing, a key priority to us over the next 12 months is to focus on online marketing within our marketing strategy - making the most of the various online marketing channels we currently use, as well as effectively implementing new ones. This programme has come along at the perfect time to help us make the most of the opportunity.”
  • Application form • What do you see as the key benefits of attending this programme? “From a personal perspective, I am looking forward to the prospect of being able to enhance my understanding of online marketing, as well as learning about the best routes we can take for the business.”
  • First seminar – needs analysis 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. Digital Olympians Apps Fab Online Crusaders AppPrentices Digital Dragons Social Maniacs
  • Second seminar - planning • Aim – to start the planning process and work on specific campaigns
  • Developing the strategy Situation: where are we now? Objectives: where do we want to be? Strategy: how do we get there? Tactics: how exactly do we get there? Action: what is our plan? Control: did we get there?
  • Student-Business
  • Student-Business
  • Student-Business
  • Student-Business
  • Student-Business
  • Participant blogs
  • Participant blogs
  • Final student reports Paultons Park (Georgi Oliver working with Rob Lee)
  • Measurement in Context Sentiment Re-Tweets Mentions Links Reviews Shared comments Views Visits Volume Search Rankings Brand Buzz Sales Downloads Paid Subscriptions Subscriptions Leads Followers Friends Subscribers Connections “Likes” Referrals Click-Thru’s Open Rates @KarlHavard
  • Feedback on campaign “To add 400 new followers in 7 days is a great result for us. When celebrities have mentioned us before we have had added around 100-200 new followers depending on their following. Naturally Paultons Park generate around 20-30 new followers per week” (Rob Lee, Digital Marketing Manager, Paultons)
  • Conclusion - issues • • • • • • • • Lots of information on the ‘why’ but little on the ‘how’ Lack of time and human resource (the owner/manager syndrome - doing everything) Inadequate IT skills Lack of marketing know-how - while small businesses have entrepreneurial skills they lack the formal marketing knowledge required to plan effectively Lack of measurable goals for their digital marketing mainly due to being unaware of the online metrics that can be set – focus on end sales Lack of awareness of the customer engagement process and channels/KPIs that apply at different stages of that process Related to point above, many small businesses not completely convinced of the ROI on digital marketing Outsourcing some or most of their digital marketing without having a clear plan or knowledge thereby losing control and insight
  • Next steps/opportunities • Small businesses need a ‘roadmap’ for their digital marketing • The final seminar in June will start that process • Potential exists to create collaborative networks to share knowledge • Focus on analytics and measurement – ROI • Identify specific skills and knowledge gaps
  • Perception of digital marketing (DM) benefits/costs: - more complex than just website - therefore harder to clearly identify benefits - how does it translate into clear value for customers? - costs of social media difficult to measure – time - better awareness of KPIs needed - create a test and learn approach to DM Strategic digital marketing (DM) development: - a vision for digital marketing - which includes a clear online value proposition - the concept of OVP needs clarification - specific online objectives needed to measure DM Simmons, G., G. A. Armstrong, et al. (2008). "A conceptualization of the determinants of small business website adoption: Setting the research agenda." International Small Business Journal 26(3): 351-389.
  • Digital Destinations LinkedIn (digital destinations group) @PhilipAlford | @SchoolofTourism #DDBU