Experiential Travel Product Development: Widening the Net of Opportunity in Nova Scotia
Widening the Net f Opportunities
Wid i th N t of O t iti
Presented by Earth Rhythms, Inc.
Faculty of Tourism and Hotel Management
Royal Roads University
Photographs courtesy of: April 29, 2008
NS Tourism, Culture & Heritage
Truro, Nova Scotia
Celes Davar , Nancy Arsenault and Royal Roads University
Tourism Experiences vs. Products?
“ A tourism product is what you buy.
A tourism experience is what you remember.”
(Canadian Tourism Commission, Experiences Toolkit 2008)
Who is the Customer?
The National Invitation Keep Exploring!
Speak to the hearts and minds of travelers
Experience Canada through its land, culture,
and personal exploration
The Provincial Invitation
♦ T experience N
To i Nova’ S i ’
Old world charm,
New world pulse,
♦ Shaped by the sea
and the spirit of our
What is Your Invitation?
T your customer, your ideal guest(s)?
id l ( )?
How much do you know about them?
• Their propensity to spend?
Facts about people: age, income, education, location
What people like to do while vacationing
The Explorer Quotient
A deeper understanding of the modern travelers
Free Spirit Rejuvenator
Gentle Explorer Authentic Experiencer
Excepts from the Canadian Tourism Commission
What is the Explorer Quotient?
A fun, easy, engaging, and innovative approach to matching consumers with
tourism products based on individual travel values and motivations
Recognizes that two people can be standing in the exact same spot,
participating in the exact same activity, yet having two completely different
Seen as an opportunity to position Canada as a place for exploration, to “Keep
Presents Canadian experiences in a more relevant way
T t t l
Targets travelers on a psychographic i t d of geographic/activity b i
h hi instead f hi / ti it basis
Assumes we have enough experiential product to sell
Canada to reach these travelers
**OUR JOB/ OUR OPPORTUNITY**
Propensity to Spend
It is more about what a person is willing to
spend, than how much they earn.
How much is a great experience worth
All are important!
* Activities * Experiences
We’ve just been working positioning destinations and selling
activities, longer than crafting memorable visitor experiences!
What is experiential travel?
Travel that engage travelers
in a series of memorable events,
that are revealed over time,
are inherently personal, involve the senses,
and make a connection on an
emotional, physical, spiritual or intellectual level.
Products Marketing Result
Series of events Market dreams
…participatory activities … position themes
…engage senses … personal relevance
… personal connection
Cape Breton Square Dance Grand Pre Winery
“The customer experience is the
next competitive battleground.”
Shaw & Ivens (2005)
We are living in a commoditized economy
W Products, prices, people, and technology are so similar
To differentiate we must develop and sell ‘meaningful things’ that
H travelers will remember, along with the activities in special places
Embracing ‘experiences’ requires a fundamentally different mindset, it is
Y a strategic organizational shift
t t i i ti l hift
“The customer experience will be the next business tsunami.”
We realize that we need to differentiate ourselves
by presenting experiences that
match our customers’ passions.
Today’s travelers are increasingly sophisticated
and have varied interests.
Core e periences are at the
heart of everything we offer our consumers.
New Realities New Directions
2008 Tourism Plan & Partnership Opportunities
NS Tourism, Culture and Heritage
Already in Market
The 2007 Royal BC Museum
A Resounding Success!
❖ 451 120
451,120visitors, 1/3 said this was the
reason to visit Victoria
❖ $30M economic impact
❖ Fabulous exhibit but the passenger manifest
and the ‘ticket’ … were the ticket, to a terrific
❖Ireceived my boarding pass and entered …I
saw, I sampled, I tried on, I touched, then …
Discovered my fate on April 15th, 1912.
The Music of Migration
Music of Migration
❖ The experiences Experiential ingredients
❖ A ti
Active f d di
use of sound recording a ❖Great theme
technology to listen to birds
❖All senses are engaged
❖ Guided walks
❖ Wine and cheese
❖ Access to experts
❖Uses local inventory - sky
❖EQ Types - Cultural Explorer and
Cultural History Buff
Where could this
approach be used?
❖ Brier Island
❖ University campuses
❖ Rural and urban museums
❖ Coastal resorts and areas
❖ Createyour own acoustic
with local providers, Santa
Fe Mountain Adventures
has a richer inventory.
What is your inventory of
Creating a shift in how the
product is positioned
❖ Away from all-inclusive to
❖ Teasing travelers with
possibilities - we help you
“create your own”
Many group options
❖ Shift from product to
Tangier Island, VA - USA
The Theme •More time
Birds •What watermen do
Boats •Explores other
Peeler Pots things
& Other Tangier Things •Lunches
•Time on your own
Médoc Marathon, France
Marathon, wine, cuisine
For the cultural explorer: experience
•Conviviality - a merry festivity
personalized for each runner
•Fun - runners in costume disguises,
individual & group
•Sport - 42.195 km
•Health - 22 gourmet food stands;
•8500 runners max - limit
•300 medical support
•52 other events simultaneously
Horizon & Co.
We understand how to design an experience that has a lasting effect beyond its
consumption whether that lasting effect is in the form of a life-long memory or retention
of learning – either way it is the memory that extends the experience over time.
Staging experiences that resonate over time is not just about entertainment but rather
about engaging all the participants in a program that finds the “sweet spot” across five
different experience areas:
Tips for operators from Lighthouse Picnics
Offer a genuine experience - do not try to be anything other than
what you are.
What our setting and experience does so well is provide the
ingredients for people to create their own memories - they’ve got
sea, sky, g
y good company, and g
p y great food!
A Toolkit for partners of the CTC
Briarcliffe Inn, B&B, PEI
take you off the
routes to meet
What is the
A tourism product is what you
buy. An experience is what Experiences
you remember... A Toolkit for partners of the CTC
It’s all about Creating Opportunities to respond to visitor demands
who bring different interests by:
1.Creating new or refreshed forms of programming - new $.
2.Adding value to your existing enterprise with new products that
feature experiences - new product lines.
•P t i ith l l
Partnering with local people - add value to the package.
l dd l t th package. k
•Partnering B2B - you are stronger together! Rewards all.
•Responding with new higher yield opportunities.
Crafting Great Experiences
Experiential Tourism Ingredients
1. Enrichment & Authenticity
2. Partner with your community
3. Invent themes that will intrigue visitors!
4. Engage all the senses!
5. Increase the value - with local people
6. Invent new forms of programs
7. Personalize and customize your services
8. Add interaction and hands-on activities
9. Feature local people - it’s what visitors want
10.Add local retail items
Business to Business
Elkhorn Resort & Earth Rhythms
A hotelier - local tour operator example
Accommodations partner - Year Round
Elkhorn Resort, Spa & Confrerence Centre
Resort + Earth
A year-round partnership offering bigger
benefits to both companies and the
B2B with local partner - efficient
❖ Elkhorn Resort Earth Rhythms
1 Their CRS drives all bookings
1. t ( k ) focus:
1 P d t creator (packager) - f
2. Direct link to Earth Rhythms on experiences!
their website - seamless 2. Direct link to Elkhorn Resort on our
3. Partner with Earth Rhythms - website - seamless
Bigger Sales Team! 3. Partner with Elkhorn - We own ideas,
4. With Earth Rhythms, a fuller and not property or amenities. A perfect
g quality offering is available.
y g match!
5. Multiple sub-markets, each with 4. With Elkhorn Resort & Spa, lots of
their own needs and interests. packaging ideas.
6. Broad offering 5. Provides outdoor experiences -
customized for four key target
markets at the resort.
• Specific and exclusive offering
1.Create simple programs, easy to deliver logistically, close-by.
2.Customize Customize • C t i (hi h yields)
2C t i •C t i Customize (higher i ld )
3.Offer Once-in-a-lifetime programs (night time, elk kill, snowshoe, spa)
in places we take for granted.
4.Create “the extra-ordinary” with local inventory.
5.Partnering lowers overhead costs.
• Small groups as a focus is key.
• Resorts have multiple niche markets - we serve them!
TIME SHARE FAMILY (US)
COUPLES WEEKEND GETAWAYS
small groups - informal
The Extended Family
Feel the Beat!
Feed the Soul.
Nourishment & Nutrition!
Understanding and Opportunity
Making meaning from our experiences!
Adapted from: Voss, C. (2003). London Business School
The Experience Profit Cycle
visitor experience Innovation
Invest in and manage
Increase the length of Memorable visit,
Visit and expenditure vibrant environment,
Marketing & Create a
word of mouth,
Change & Tourism
All graphs created and provided
through the courtesy of
Dr Daniel Scott
Canada Research Chair in
Global Change & Tourism
University of Waterloo
Make daily choices to reduce
GHG from absolutely
everything we do consume
What can you do? 8 action steps
1. Continue to adopt conservation practices that reduce energy -
2. Keep educating yourselves and your customers about practical
solutions to reduce emissions - carbon offsets, carbon footprint,
3. Deliver your events, facilities and programs with as low carbon
emissions as you can.
4 Expand your offer of local foods - Low food miles.
5. Promote self-propelled travel at your facilities. Provide electric
scooters, bikes; walk; kayak; canoe.
Carbon offsets: Emission reduction credits
6. Use, purchase and rent cars that have lower carbonother organizations’
you purchase from emissions.
projects to reduce emissions from your
7. Invest even more in energy audits, retrofits, and alternative energy
for your facilities and communities.
What can you do? 8 action steps
7. Create experiences in which efforts to deal with climate change are
the experiences! Travelers have personal access to climate change and
8. Purchase carbon offsets for all ground and air travel, and help your
customers to do so. Aventours Adventures (US) now includes the
cost of carbon offsets as part of the price for all of its tours to Central
America. (Planetair.ca, Less.ca, Zerofootprint.net)
❖ Be ready for the anti-air travel backlash from global markets Have
❖ Embrace Slow Travel - It’s all about experiences.
❖ As an industry, become leaders in applying solutions that
demonstrate effective reduction in carbon emissions.
Product Development Day
❖ Lunch - featuring local foods. Menu focus.
❖ Very little paper handed out - purposefully.
❖ Rental of hybrid cars for facilitators - less fuel, less emissions.
❖ Purchase of carbon offsets for return flights.
❖ I l di
Including i f ti
information about climate change and t i
b t li t h d tourism within our
❖ Eliminating delegate bags.
❖ Online evaluation after workshop - eliminate paper.
❖ Car-pooling to come to this conference was encouraged
Graphic Designed by: www.avrilorloff.com
Rules of Engagement
Set the table!
One person hold the memento
Everyone is encouraged to contribute
Listen together for insights “Ah-ha’s and Oh’s”
3 questions, approx 15 minutes each
Share collective discoveries after coffee break
World Café Questions
1 Wh t experiences in th province are we proud of and why?
i i the i d f d h ?
2.The year is 2013, what new visitor experiences have been
added to Nova Scotia’s inventory?
3.What is needed to build the capacity to develop and deliver
memorable visitor experiences i your b i
bl i it i in business or region?
Experiential Tourism Programs
and Yield Continuum
Diversify Offer 2
T diti l
Type of Program Offer
Faculty of Tourism and Hotel Management
Royal Roads University
250.391.2600 ext 4424
Earth Rhythms Inc.
www earthrhythms ca