Destination Marketing Organizations or DMOs have plenty of challenges to deal with. One of these challenges involves managing all industry stakeholders. Negotiating politics while offering value has always been a scuffle of sorts. What stakeholders need to understand is that, sometimes, even their own actions can birth issues and difficulties for DMOs. This, of course, only compounds existing challenges.
On that account, and for the obvious benefits of achieving the ultimate shared goals, tourism boards and travel businesses need to make sure they’re not compounding problems by understanding these 6 core features of DMOs.
DMOs Can’t Satisfy Everybody
When you let the DMO focus on what’s important for the industry as a whole, you are actually allowing for a greater inflow of tourists, which will eventually benefit you as well. As the saying goes, a rising tide lift all boats. By focusing on key attractions and targeted campaign messages, the DMO can help to attract more inbound tourists and position the destination’s varied unique selling points to individual markets. There’s no point in forcing the DMO into promoting things that don’t draw in the huge crowds. The message will only get cluttered and unappealing if everyone wants a feature.
Solution: Let the DMO do what it does best. Allow them to focus on what’s good for the destination, country, state or even the travel industry. In the globalization era, that could mean complex localization procedures such as website translation, the creation of multilingual content, and marketing and social media messages.
Go Beyond Reactive Marketing
There’s a good chance that you may not agree with your DMO’s marketing. However, if you have a disagreement, don’t let it be based on what your competitors are doing. Very often, opinions from industry stakeholders can ruin the effectiveness of a campaign.
Solution: Give your DMO room for creativity. Let them suggest and do what they think is best in forwarding your goals. After discussion and agreement, stick to the marketing plan and strategy. After all, they didn’t whip ideas out of thin air, but base them on research and expertise.
DMOs Aren’t Sales Channels
DMOs are primarily purposed to market experiences and not individual offerings. There are enough options and channels out there for tourists and travelers to buy their tickets or book their accommodation.
Solution: Let your DMO focus on marketing the experience of visiting your destination. They are not there to handle the sales of tickets or rooms. Instead, they should keep their eyes on the bigger picture of experience marketing and destination branding.
DMOs Think In The Long-Term
Looking for support from your DMO to meet the current quarter’s sales targets is fine, but, DMOs have bigger things to worry about. They need to look at the tourism figures for your entire province, state or even country. They need to develop long-term strategies to keep inbound tourists coming and returning.
Solution: Let the DMO focus on the long-term view of building your destination’s brand, reputation, and desirability.
DMOs Want You To Succeed
DMOs are public organizations and that makes them subject to politics and media scrutiny. Often, they need to be careful about what they engage in and deal with complications that might not be evident at first glance. Though they have to solve complex problems and consider manifold red tape, they usually love what they do and share common goals with you. When you succeed, they too take immense pride in the positive outcome of their work.
Solutions: Try and understand that DMOs want the best for you, but, have their own challenges to deal with. So, collaborate with them towards a common goal instead of questioning their motives.
Accept Their Failures
Allow your DMO to fail without them worrying about their jobs or their resources. The industry cannot grow without a little failure now and then. Remaining steadfast in the face of adversity or failure will only strengthen their marketing, allow them to innovate, and try new and different things that can set you apart from other destinations.
Solution: Let your DMO conducts its experiments and testing with the goals of fine-tuning the strategy and the execution. Let them go beyond outdated methods of destination marketing to yield exceptional results for you.
To cut a long story short, tourism boards and travel businesses need to give DMOs their space to think big, see far, and perform well. DMOs need to have a certain amount of autonomy to carry out their functions. They cannot be spending their efforts in trying to satisfy everybody, especially when their goals is to boost tourism and not just profits.