Ecotourism certification schemes and quality standards as networking and marketing tools

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Author: Aivar Ruukel (Estonian Ecotourism Association)
Presentation for Topic 1: Improving the Benefits provided by Certification Programs and Standards
2nd European Ecotourism Conference
23-25 October 2013, Romania

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Ecotourism certification schemes and quality standards as networking and marketing tools

  1. 1. Ecotourism certification schemes and quality standards as networking and marketing tools Aivar Ruukel
  2. 2. Local tourism business in Soomaa NP
  3. 3. Local tourism business in Soomaa NP
  4. 4. Local tourism business in Soomaa NP
  5. 5. Ecotourism certification scheme Ecotourism certification scheme
  6. 6. since 2009 PAN Parks
  7. 7. 2009 EDEN award winner
  8. 8. Ecotourism Destinations in Europe
  9. 9. What are the benefits of certification schemes and quality standards as networking and marketing tools? How to improve the benefits - at destination level? - at business level?
  10. 10. It has been a vital networking tool locally, for getting different players together - to discuss our future (vision, aims) - and to better define the roles and responsibilities of these players
  11. 11. It has improved cooperation and joined marketing in our region.
  12. 12. It gives to our destination a profile, makes us more known in Europe, and more visibility nationally, regionally, and globally
  13. 13. Tourists prefer regions that have some type of certification Our customers report that they chose us because of what we do and not because of our certification
  14. 14. It adds to credibility - among various players - among tourists Tourists know better what to expect, when they visit certified destination.
  15. 15. 14 case studies on tourism in wetlands
  16. 16. What should be done to improve the benefits provided by certification programs and quality standards at destination level?
  17. 17. There is a strong potential to benefit from networking but in fact there is not much networking. Meet more often and discuss about their opportunities
  18. 18. Certifications are beneficial if they are well known. Unfortunately they are not! Better promotion of the marketing brand and cooperation with tourism sector
  19. 19. The area must first mature. Unfortunately there are many conflicting interests. Mass tourism provides the jobs but also determines the focus and target group of the area. Policy makers will go for the highest tax revenue = mass tourism.
  20. 20. Being member of network makes ones business more known at national and international level as well. It helps to stand out among other service providers in the region
  21. 21. When business cooperates with the NP it helps to attract more eco-tourists. International quality is convincing travel agencys It is a quality guarantee if you are certified and
  22. 22. What should be done to improve the benefits provided by certification programs and quality standards at business level?
  23. 23. Business care about simplicity Less (criterias) is more!
  24. 24. Certification + (Online) Reputation
  25. 25. Thank you! Contacts: twitter: @ruukel aivar@soomaa.com skype: aivarruukel

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