At this year’s World Travel Market, the Travel Foundation held a series of ‘advice clinics’ to help organisations identify the best ways to communicate their sustainable practices, and to market their destination by using authentic stories relating to its heritage, culture, environment and, above all, its people.
Along with experts from Leeds Beckett University and TTG, we offered advice on how to communicate these stories effectively. TTG will feature some of the best stories in an upcoming print edition. Tourism organisations that care for destinations through responsible practices will be able to offer the best stories and customer experiences, so destination and product marketing is one way to highlight the value of all that responsible tourism seeks to achieve.
“We hope that through this marketing and ‘story-led’ approach we will make sustainable tourism practices more relevant, accessible and valued,” said Travel Foundation Head of Communications Ben Lynam. “There are some amazing tourism products out there, and it just takes a journalistic eye to develop the potential stories.”
Trials conducted by the team led by Dr Xavier Font at Leeds Beckett have shown how using persuasive communication techniques can make sustainability messages customer-relevant, increase participation and reinforce the sense of having made the correct product purchase.
In total 17 organisations visited the advice clinic, including hotel owners, tour operators and destination authorities.