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Tourism report-en

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The COVID-19 outbreak had a devastating impact on the travel, tourism, and
hospitality industry with the UN’s World Touris...

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02
Commentary Page
“Last year was no doubt, one of the most unusual and challenging years on
record for our industry. The ...

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“Well, it’s about time to build a brand value, look beyond the new normal,
rethink business models and operations throu...

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Tourism report-en

  1. 1. The COVID-19 outbreak had a devastating impact on the travel, tourism, and hospitality industry with the UN’s World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) reporting that international tourist arrivals A cross-cutting economic activity unlike any other, tourism will need to be an important priority for future recovery efforts as countries are beginning to relax travel restrictions, roll out vaccine programmes and open up borders again. were down 70 percent globally in January-August 2020 compared to the same period of 2019. 01 30% The Tourism Industry post COVID-19 Communications Strategies to Rebuild
  2. 2. 02 Commentary Page “Last year was no doubt, one of the most unusual and challenging years on record for our industry. The pandemic has not only had a sustained significant impact on the hospitality sector and the overall tourism industry, but also on how we operate our properties. Despite all that has happened, we are beyond grateful to have managed to keep all our properties open with reasonable occupancy during the pandemic. Our team at TIME also went above and beyond to ensure guests felt safe, secure, and welcome in our properties throughout the pandemic. Looking ahead and as aptly pointed out in the report, in businesses such as ours and across many of our industry counterparts, it is important to continuously look at ways to adapt to the changing market and guest preferences. From our perspective, providing more varied and specialized offers and promotions to cater to changes in guest expectations and emerging new markets such as Israel and just recently, Qatar, is the way forward. We have also commenced offering contactless dining and payment options and initiated moving towards a more ‘digital’ approach. The commencement of vaccine distribution across some parts of the world and in the UAE will undoubtedly bring optimism and confidence back to travel, and we look forward to welcoming guests from around the world once again.” Mohamed Awadalla, CEO, TIME Hotels “The entire global economy is driven by tourism and hospitality sectors. Unless we see a drastic change in the current travel restrictions and communication strategies on safety, it’s unlikely for the economy of certain countries, that rely heavily on tourism, to recover” Hesham Almekkawi, CEO, YYT Food Corp
  3. 3. 03 “Well, it’s about time to build a brand value, look beyond the new normal, rethink business models and operations through innovative approaches, and capture growth opportunities by developing winning strategies. It’s now the moment to plant the seeds of sustainable growth in hospitality, gain competitive edge and win (Back) the “New” customer. Embed sustainability ambitions, transform accordingly our strategies, adapt, be ready for the “New Now” and win the game. Re-imagine TTH (Tourism Travel Hospitality) in a simple way and achieve more with less, re-design our road-map based on a solid master plan having understood and analyzed new clients demands and needs. The time is now to transform, re-imagine your business!” Nicolas Frangos Chief Executive Officer and Strategic Hotel Consultant for Luxury & Lifestyle Hospitality “In chaos ... no limit for opportunities!!!!!!” Firas Mneimneh District Director Radisson hotel group western province
  4. 4. 04 “Communicating in the era of COVID-19 was a lesson in the necessity for radical transparency, nimbleness and forward thinking by communications teams. The usual hospitality “fluff pieces” of communications are simply not going to work anymore. The opportunity is to find interesting and meaningful ways to connect with your guests and provide them content that builds trust, loyalty and engagement. Guests will really want to understand how we can make sure that they are safe, nurtured and rejuvenated during their next stay – and how does that continue when they return home? COVID-19 showed us that we are all very interconnected - with our neighbors, our communities and our environment - so the challenge for us as hoteliers is to understand what we can do in order to take more of a guardianship role and protect the wellbeing of all our stakeholders and planet”. Carissa Nimah Guardian of the Brand (Chief Commercial Officer), Soneva “During the pandemic, domestic tourism was the main for hotels across the Kingdom, and particularly in Jeddah. One of the first major step that has been taken by Sheraton Hotels & Resorts, similar to all the hotels in the Marriott Group, was committing strictly to the precautionary measures implemented by the Ministry of Health such as social distancing and continuous sterilization. Then come the special offers and promotions, whether for rooms or restaurants, which are aimed at attracting local tourists. We also ensured an enjoyable stay with affordable prices, such as providing accommodation discounts of up to 50%. In addition to the new offer of renting rooms and spaces to businessmen for half a day so they would be able to conduct their urgent businesses in a quiet workplace that allows them to enjoy working remotely. Additionally, we can not forget the efforts of the Ministry of Tourism in promoting domestic tourism, which what reflected on the rise in hotels operations, especially after the COVID-19 hit the hospitality sector, which resulted in a decrease of 35% and 45% in hotels operations. On a personal level, I regard the travel ban as a unique opportunity to explore and visit new places in the Kingdom that we, as Saudi citizens, were not familiar with”. Wejdan Yamani Director of Marketing and Communications, Sheraton Jeddah, Marriott International
  5. 5. Recovery is expected to be slower than originally predicted with virus containment measures lifted gradually and the possibility of reversal should new waves arise. Travel and tourism operators need to consider the longer term implications of the crisis, constantly staying ahead of the curve. Now is the time for the travel industry and governments to reinforce coordination efforts that will restore the sector and create the structural transformation needed to build a stronger, sustainable, and resilient tourism economy. Paving the Way to Recovery The road to recovery for the industry may be long, however the tourism sector has always proven to be resilient. While demand for international travel currently remains low, domestic tourism is strengthening significantly. Countries are looking for ways to re-boot, restore visitor confidence and reshape tourism in the post COVID-19 future. Effective PR and communications will be essential in ensuring continued reassurance and confidence to secure the trust of stakeholders. The people-to-people nature of the sector means public health protocols will have an effect on the way companies run their operations for the foreseeable future. With public opinion of travel still volatile, businesses must redefine their communications using strategies and tactics that promote safety and responsible travel. Destination marketing will need to shift from promoting travel to promoting safety and supporting local communities. 05 Source: • Chart: COVID-19's Crushing Impact On International Tourism | Statista
  6. 6. 06 1 Stakeholder Mapping 7 Steps for a Winning Future The key to maintaining trust with stakeholders, employees and customers is to be clear about what you are doing to keep them safe. put the following 7-steps together to help travel and tourism businesses create a successful communications strategy that will help steer them through to market recovery: Stakeholder mapping is crucial to your recovery communications plan. This is to identify all audience groups in your value chain that have been affected by the COVID-19 crisis. Your stakeholder map should include employees, customers, suppliers, tourism industry bodies, community partners, the media, and the public. Categorize your audiences by sentiment, as in positive, neutral and opposition, to then define each audience’s issue around the situation. Consider how your organization needs to communicate with each group and focus on stakeholders open to influence. As we are gradually moving out of the crisis, you will need to monitor and review the changing situation for shifts in your stakeholder landscape. Engage and align with strategic partners and government support efforts to cooperate toward recovery and connect with local businesses and communities. This is an opportunity to help your industry and community stay resourceful and resilient.
  7. 7. 07 2 Adapt Your Messaging Tailor your messaging to instil trust and give a sense of security and create positive attitudes towards your brand around COVID-19 protocols and how you have adapted your operations. Begin to encourage audiences to plan for the future by tapping into what they are most excited about after lockdown, such as the resumption of freedom, nature, a much deserved holiday after stressful times, reuniting with relatives and loved ones abroad. Communicate on the specifics of the crisis and your response with all stakeholders to maintain engagement and provide reassurance. As you begin to build the dream of a better future, repurpose your image catalogue to showcase your brand experience. Enhance this by identifying distribution channels that have increased viewership since COVID-19, such as YouTube, Instagram and Twitter. Review any pre-programmed social media content and your earned media outreach to ensure the tone is suitably mindful of the current situation.
  8. 8. 08 People are constantly online since the pandemic, scrolling through their timelines looking for information and news. This is your opportunity to share business updates, policy information, or changes implemented to your operation. Social media is a key tool for organizations in the travel and tourism industry to outlast this crisis by staying connected with past and future customers regardless of physical distance. You need to ensure constant interest and plant the seeds of future travel plans with calming but evidence-based messages and continuous engagement. If your marketing budget permits, put paid media effort behind your posts to ensure ongoing visibility. Recreate memories of your brand experience and your social media channels can provide this opportunity. Employ advocacy and influencer campaigns by generating reviews from past travellers and re-engaging with past positive comments from visitors on your platforms. Get creative with your social messaging by recording a video to show how your staff is going the extra mile to ensure the safety of customers. These types of appreciation and gratitude posts are generating a lot of positive engagement and traction online right now. Tapping into the current public mood, post and share inspirational messages. Do your best to keep consumers dreaming about what they want to do, so you can build their commitment to make their dreams a reality. Be responsive to shifting travel planning trends, capture consumers who are shifting plans from international travel to domestic travel, and staycations. 3 Leverage Digital Channels
  9. 9. 09 The tourism sector is a major source of employment, government revenue and foreign exchange earnings. Governments around the world are currently formulating a variety of stimulus support packages. Businesses need to be prepared to address the demands that will be placed on them when they accept funding, as these will include the adherence to new health protocols, assuring public safety, creating wins for people and society. Industry leaders now need to engage with politicians, policy, and government decision makers, either directly or via their trade body, to shape a stronger, safer, and more resilient tourism economy. Cooperation between the public and private sectors and local communities will open dialogue and allow the tourism ecosystem to thrive. Neither business nor government can go this alone. See also ’s full guide on Public Affairs Efforts to Aid COVID-19 Recovery. 4 Public Affairs
  10. 10. 10 Both industry and consumer media outlets are craving reliable information and advice on how to navigate the path forward in uncertain times. The brands that are active now with thought leadership content will secure the best position when it is time to rebound. During COVID-19 you need to react in real time, constantly pivoting messaging and content to address what customers and journalists want to know right now. Travel and tourism are integral to local communities and companies should continue to find ways to actively participate in the COVID-19 response. This can be airlines flying volunteers and expats for free, hotels offering rooms for healthcare workers or isolation purposes. Such efforts serve to demonstrate your corporate social responsibility and that you are going above and beyond. Journalists at national daily newspapers are tailoring their stories to local market needs. Equally, sector media are currently most interested in the impact on the economic impact of the crisis and how this will affect companies, industries, and employees, so reach out to the business media with a domestic angle. 5 Traditional Media
  11. 11. 11 Remind your customers of their experience with you, to remain visible, memorable and maintain connection with your brand. Travel and tourism organizations need to leverage database marketing efforts for personalized messaging, loyalty programmes, vouchers, incentives and to keep their customers informed. Review your website and SEO efforts to preserve website rankings. Consumer loyalty is a priceless resource, so travel and tourism businesses must include database marketing as a means of cementing customer relationships to create barriers against competitors. Navigating this crisis requires understanding and attracting new customers. Direct marketing will provide companies with a wealth of data to help analyse customer behaviour, identify the right prospects, and look for indicators to detect when travel is picking back up. 6 Direct Marketing
  12. 12. 12 Attitudes, motivations, and preferences of tourists and business travellers will have changed - perhaps forever. The interim plan is straightforward in capturing as much domestic business as possible. Additionally, this can be a time for a review of your operations and customer service to build in digitization of the industry. COVID-19 is proving a catalyst in the travel and tourism sector with the adoption of new technologies. Health and safety practices are no longer a nice-to-have, and amid stay-at-home ordering, digital tools will enable a safe ‘no-touch’ customer journey. . As a result of the pandemic, the travel industry is at a point of disruption. Businesses need to adopt an agile communications strategy that allows their team to detect, adapt to, and respond to changes. Recovery will not be identical in different parts of the world and will run to different timelines. This means that brands have to continually re-evaluate what the competitive landscape might look like post-recovery. Companies need to take steps now to be ready to gain market share, enter new markets, and offer new products. Historically, major crises like COVID-19, while adversely affecting an industry, have also been the driver of innovation and change. The hospitality and tourism industry must be prepared to work in an environment where sustainability and operational requirements will become more stringent, and diversification into new business models becomes even more important. 7 Future Planning
  13. 13. 13 Moving Forward Travel and tourism operators will need to be creative and flexible with their offerings to keep up with demand evolution in a constantly changing situation. Success will come down to how they package an experience for customers who have been under lockdown and great stress. Learn to understand the different groups and trip types to cater for the right traveller demographics. Consider the new expectations, concerns, and preferences of travellers to ensure your brand is their preferred option. The industry was healthy before the pandemic hit and while we do not know exactly when, we can be certain that travellers will be back. The crisis will be resolved by a vaccine and increased immunity. ’s 7 Communications Strategy and Planning steps will help travel and tourism brands make that recovery period healthier.
  14. 14. 14 About is an independent communications consultancy based in Saudi Arabia. Our understanding of the local market converged with our global reach and knowledge enables us to bridge our clients with their audiences effectively. We are aligned by the objective of filling the gap in communication that exists in the local market. Therefore, our specialty lies in building bridges that sustain relationships and create brand reputation and value through innovative approaches. Our array of services includes, but is not limited to: •Corporate Communications Strategy •Stakeholder Mapping •Crisis Management •Corporate Social Responsibility •Internal Communications •Reputation Management •Media Relations •Public Relations •Public Affairs •Social Media •Marketing & Brand Solutions
  15. 15. 15 Worldwide Worldwide Worldwide Notice: Proprietary and Confidential All the content of this document (text, figures, list, financial information, graphics, designs, diagrams, as well as other graphic elements and/or audio and videos), whichever the format used (paper or electronic), is confidential and proprietary to . This document includes ideas and information based on the experience, know-how, intellectual/creative effort of . For these reasons, this material shall not be used, reproduced, copied, disclosed, transmitted, transformed, commercialized, or communicated, in whole or in part, neither to third parties nor to the public, without the express and written consent of . Worldwide © All rights reserved +966 12 661 4579 info@w7worldwide.com www.w7worldwide.com +966 56 720 1039 @w7worldwide For more information: Our Official Website: http://www.w7worldwide.com/

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