Most professionals take our MSc responsible tourism management as a mentoring programme to keep up to date, gain knowledge, contacts and support in achieving positive change within their business (or as a path to find new jobs).
Besides our masters, I also teach short courses for industry on responsible tourism marketing to professionals, tailor made to suit the needs of particular funders or destinations, or more generic courses scheduled around international tourism trade events. The courses range from one day to a week, with the most popular being two days. I prefer it when we build in preparation time with the course participants, action plans arising from the course, and an online follow up to support implementation of the lessons learned.
A two day intensive course could have the following programme:
|10:00||1. Is it ethical to market responsible tourism? Using tourism as a sustainable development tool is technically feasible. Changing people’s behaviour is the bottleneck. Each of us are decision-makers that because of lack of knowledge, vested interests and inertia limit sustainable change. We need to understand human and corporate behaviour to plan more successful strategies for change, and marketing has to be part of the solution, not the problem.
|11:30||2. The responsible tourism behaviour gapWe do not understand the impact that sustainability of products and responsible business practices do and can have on demand, because we are asking the wrong questions and myopic analysis
|2:00||3. Behaviour to targeting to positioningExplicit responsible tourism is not a unique selling proposition, but is key as part of the implicit and subliminal message that promotes product quality and trust.
|3:30||4. Marketing strategyCompanies with a responsible tourism focus need to fully understand traditional marketing strategy analysis tools, to maximise their impact.
– Company situation, opportunities, environmental analysis.
– Exercise: Product portfolio analysis.
– Performance-importance, four abilities, Ansoff and Boston matrices
– Decisions regarding business units, emphasis upon products and brands.
– Plans actioned
– Measurement and evaluation of plans and activities.
– Corrective action where necessary.
|5:00||5. Is sustainability certification the answer?Sustainability standards will be promoted by policy makers, with positive and negative consequences for industry and consumers, which industry and destination management companies must appreciate.
|6:00||Drinks and social dinner (not included in course costs)|
|9:30||6. Product developmentA responsible tourism product is mainly a quality, real product, that meets all key product quality attributes and delivers a unique experience that leads to increased product satisfaction, customer loyalty and word of mouth.
|11:00||7. Fair Trade certification case studyThe concept of fair trade certification does not translate well to the service sector, and the cost benefit analysis does not stack up for tourism.
|12:00||8. PricePrice premium for sustainability is marginal, and in some cases negative, depending on the positioning-product-market congruence. Yield management through the development of shoulder season products is more likely to impact on profitability.
|2:00||9. PromotionCommunicate engaging subliminal RT messages congruent with your market’s behaviour, but remember: communication needs to fit the product, not the other way around!
|3:00||10. Distribution/ placeMarket access is the bottleneck to many well meaning ideas, it takes time, skill and perseverance to get established links that many less qualified products will fight to keep. Distribution costs will be higher than expected, and market acceptance will take longer than you wished.
|4:00||11. One to one business development surgery time|
|6:00||Drinks and social dinner|
Professionals taking the course as part of our MSc responsible tourism management get a support manual to help you prepare before the course, and to support your application of this course’s contents to your business. We schedule the teaching of this module as part of the masters course twice a year in Leeds, in June and December, over an intensive weekend. The contents page of our latest manual is here:
Unit 0. INTRODUCTION 6
What is this module all about? 6
UNIT 1. TOURISM MARKETING STRATEGIC APPROACHES 11
Characteristics of tourism with implications for RT marketing 13
Reasons to be responsible 20
Corporate attitudes towards the environment 25
How corporate principles affect marketing 30
The marketing response 34
Strategic marketing planning 43
Tactical marketing planning 44
The process of marketing planning 45
UNIT 2. CONSUMER BEHAVIOUR & THE RESPONSIBLE TOURIST 51
Tourism’s determinants and influences 51
Consumer behaviour: The responsible tourist market 60
The Complexity of Researching the Industry 69
‘Green Gap’ Issues 70
Methodological Flaws 71
Not Enough ‘Why’ Occurring – Insufficient Exploratory Research 73
Holiday Accommodation Research 74
Characteristics of consumer behaviour 75
The sociological basis of consumer behaviour 77
B2B and sustainable supply chain management 79
Central role of research and information in tourism marketing 82
References and additional reading 88
UNIT 3. RESPONSIBLE TOURISM MARKETING STRATEGY 90
Lifestyle Segmentation – Psychographics 96
Geotourism segmentation efforts 98
Defra Sustainable population segments 100
Your segmentation methods 103
Choosing a market-coverage strategy 109
Strategic market oriented planning 110
Distinguishing between strategy and tactics 118
Product-market growth models 120
Marketing directly: internationalising your product 121
Marketing through dealers: relationship marketing 125
Positioning consists of three steps 127
Strategy based on differentiation and “matching” 130
Designing your responsible tourism positioning 132
UNIT 4. IMAGE, CRISIS MANAGEMENT AND BRANDING 148
Modelling the tourist destination’s image 149
Consumer behaviour and the need for image analysis 151
Risk perception 154
Strategic image management 160
Product’s image as the key to product positioning 162
Differentiating a destination or company by its image 165
Conveying an image in the communication mix 166
Tools to communicate an image 167
Prevailing destination image themes 168
Changing image and segmentation 171
Crisis management 174
References and additional reading 184
UNIT 5. THE RESPONSIBLE TOURISM MARKETING MIX 186
What is the meant by the marketing mix 187
Product levels 191
Product lifecycle 192
Product development and innovation 195
The nature of innovation: creation or change 198
New product development process 205
Market readiness of your product 216
Six Sins of Greenwashing 242
Avoiding greenwash 244
Social marketing and the online media 261
eMarketing for ultimate segmentation 265