Travel 2.0 Consulting Group Keeping Tourism Marketing Simple » Travel 2.0 Consulting Group

Keeping Tourism Marketing Simple

Written by on Mar 23, 2012 | 6 Comments

Keeping Tourism Marketing Simple

Complexity is safe.

It gives those involved an excuse to defend the poor choices made during the strategic development process.

Adding more options, more pages, more brand dimensions satisfies the stakeholder, while confusing the consumer.

Complexity feels good.  No hurt feelings, no disagreement, no conflict.

Just hidden spite for the end result.

Simplicity is difficult.

The act of saying no.  Cutting, deleting, removing, rejecting.  You have to fight for simplicity.

Simplicity hurts.

And it should hurt.

Making decisions is not easy.  But it is required.  For a great brand, an easy-to-use website or a readable visitor guide.

Stand up for simplicity.  Support it.  Demand it.

The fight for simplicity is a victory for your visitor.

  • Tim Brechlin

    This kind of ties into one of my issues with a great deal of DMOs, in that far too many try to position the destination to be everything to everyone. It’s simply impossible. Destination A may not have the hotel and convention center space, Destination B may not have the restaurant / nightlife / music / art culture, Destination C may not have the public transit, so on and so forth — yet those destinations are all battling for the visitor without differentiating themselves in any realistic fashion.

    Simplicity is very difficult, I fully agree — in the incipient stages of establishing simplicity, that is. One of my mantras is that “we are not our audience” — we can tell ourselves who our target audience or target visitor is until we’re blue in the face, but that doesn’t mean anything. Real research, real analysis and real hard looks at our destination are the way to get to that point.

    I love email marketing, and my guiding principle in email marketing is to send timely, targeted, relevant and valuable email to people who have asked to receive it. Destination marketing, in a general sense, operates in exactly the same way. Do research and surveys of your email list. Analyze your social media insights. Dig into your Google Analytics and see who’s actually coming to your website. Draw conclusions from that data, and act upon it — don’t naively, or arrogantly, assume that just because you’re crafting a message to a specific audience, it means the audience is seeing it.

    Do the work to figure out who your audience is. Target your message towards that audience. After that hard work, simplicity becomes easy, because you already know your target market as a result of that work. 

    Target and Wal-Mart are the places that are everything to everyone. Don’t try to force your destination into that artificial one-size-fits-all category.

    • / Troy Thompson

      Good stuff Tim, thanks for the comment.

      We have both spoken about this before, but I think it is such an important topic for destinations.

      I love that thought…just because you are targeting a certain audience, do not assume that audience is seeing it.


      - Troy

  • Colleen Murphy

    “The most valuable of all talents is that of never using two words when one will do.” – Thomas Jefferson 

    • / Troy Thompson

      You know Colleen, I struggled with how long to actually make this post…you know, keeping it simple and all.

      And that quote was part of the early draft.

      But then it got cut.

      In the name of simplicity.

      - Troy

  • Tim Zahner

    Occam’s razor.

  • Alex Kaufman

    A close second in cop out land is using any tagline akin to: “The _______ experience”, yet it’s everywhere and means nothing.