Category: Sustainability

Issues related to social, economic and environmental sustainability, including the third sector

Business model innovationMarketing 3.0StrategySustainabilityTourism marketing

Destination Marketing 3.0: Positioning strategy

In practicing Marketing 3.0, profit comes from the appreciation of the business contribution to the community well-being, and so the destination’s intended impact on the stakeholder community has to be at the core of its positioning strategy, being perceived as a positive force in addressing the communities concerns and aspirations. This entails addressing functional, emotional and spiritual needs, for these have to be regarded when proposing the set of brand values.

The positioning strategy consists of defining how the destination wants to be perceived by its stakeholders: its unique value proposition and its core values, as the main institutional standards of behavior. Such standards have to be embedded into the executives’ leadership style to transmit them to the employees and partners to ultimately spread them throughout the whole stakeholder system.

In defining and implementing the positioning strategy, brands have to care about the three key points:

  • Brand identity: defining a unique value proposition in terms of functional needs to position the brand in the minds of the stakeholders.
  • Brand image: defining values that appeal to the emotional needs of the stakeholders.
  • Brand integrity: establishing trust through the consistent delivery of the brand promise in order to fulfill their human spirit.

In marketing 3.0 only originality, authenticity and honesty are effective, because the community members are actually those who do the marketing of the destination through telling stories about the experiences they have lived. The destination has to focus its efforts on being authentic, delivering the brand promise and facilitating the connection between tourists to let them share their experiences.

Beyond cultural transformation, mission accomplishment –brand promise delivery- and adequate communication –through horizontal storytelling-, do you think there is any other necessary mean to convey the integrity of the brand positioning?

Business model innovationCollaborative business modelsEnvironmental sustainabilityInnovationMarketing 3.0

Destination Models 3.0: Competitive advantage & Value proposition (II)

In tourism 3.0 it is essential to understand that the new marketing focuses on weaving values and mission within the business culture, which is reflected deeply in the experiences and stories marketing the destination, and ultimately obtains profits through the appreciation of the positive impact that the business has on the society, the environment and the culture. It is through the opportunity given to have this positive impact that destination models 3.0 target the stakeholders’ human spirit. Furthermore, by empowering all stakeholders to participate, they become accountable for the accomplishment of the mission.

Beyond the mission driven value proposition that sets destination models 3.0 apart from other tourism development models, it may be necessary in many cases to target non-mission driven tourists offering non-mission driven experiences to guarantee sufficient revenue streams all year round, or to partially subsidize the mission driven activities. In such cases, the model should prioritize the development of experiences that appeal to the affluent tourists and other segments or niche markets that contribute in balancing the demand seasonality, assessing also whether these tourists generate any additional negative impact either on the natural or social sphere.

In this section, there should be explained not only the competitive advantage(s) that sets it apart from other destinations and the portfolio of experiences it intends to offer to visitors, but also the vision, mission and its related goals, so long as they are the primary reason for which mission driven stakeholders are to get engaged with the destination.

Do you think we should consider anything else when defining the value proposition and the competitive advantage?

Business model innovationEnvironmental sustainabilityMarketing 3.0SustainabilityThird sector and social sustainability

Destination Models 3.0: Competitive advantage & Value proposition (I)

The core competitive advantage of destination models 3.0 is their unique capacity –built upon the open innovation ecosystem- to create mission driven experiences and stories that engage stakeholders to become brand ambassadors, as well as to adapt its business model to changes in the environment, and to involve all the local communities in providing authentic life-changing experiences, while alleviating poverty and protecting the natural and cultural heritage.

In destination models 3.0, the mission, vision and values are embedded in the core of the value proposition. Destinations 3.0 are known as scenarios where many stories take place about authentic and life-changing experiences with the local population, which ultimately have a positive impact on either the social, cultural or natural environment of the destination. Moreover, visitors are encouraged to write and share their story in order to inspire more people to live their own experience.

Hereby are listed some sample life-changing experiences classified according to the type of mission accomplishment, which may consist on alleviating poverty, protecting the environment, promoting the cultural heritage or fostering socio-cultural transformation both in the community and the tourists.

  • Environmental protection
  • Tourism programs consisting of discovery of the natural heritage while actively participating in an environmental protection program in cooperation with NGO or other entities.
  • Nature sightseeing and observation experiences accompanied by an expert environmentalist educating them on the fragility of the natural heritage and the environment-friendly practices.
  • Heritage protection and promotion
  • Learning about the local arts, language, cooking, dancing, instrument playing, etc. to turn intangible heritage into a skill development experience.
  • Immersive experience with cultural / ethnic minorities for a deeper understanding of their culture, traditions and way of life.
  • Poverty alleviation
  • Accommodation with local families where to enjoy their home hospitality and have a firsthand experience of the local reality.
  • Sharing meals with local families, experiencing their way of cooking, their rituals and the local food along with their hospitality.
  • Enjoying other interactive experiences offered by locals who share their knowledge about the hidden spots of the destination, local games, parties and tell stories.
  • Socio-cultural transformation
  • Accommodation and stay in religious sites such as monasteries and temples sharing the lifestyle of the monks to develop spirituality and peace of mind.
  • Developing communicative skills through storytelling facilitation programs, and further encouraging participants to write their stories and submit them in contests and the social networks.
  • Developing creative activities that challenge and stimulate their imagination through art workshops and contests, including a broad scope of art disciplines.
  • Multi-activity resorts where clients are educated on healthier lifestyles, learning about balanced diet, physical exercise, meditation, etc.

Do you envision other types of life-changing experiences?

Business model innovationCollaborative business modelsCollaborative cultureCulture changeEnvironmental sustainability

Destination Marketing 3.0: Mission, Vision and goals

In Marketing 3.0 the mission is the main purpose of the destination development. This is to be defined by listening to and understanding the needs, concerns and aspirations of all stakeholders, starting with the local community leaders but without disregarding other potential stakeholders such as the communities of creative activists, who are to become the destination’s best brand ambassadors. Creating a mission often starts by thinking about small ideas that can make a big difference, and doing a Marketing Plan 3.0 gives an opportunity for reflection upon the mission definition, to make it more ambitious and attractive to the targeted mission driven stakeholders.

Such concerns and aspirations addressed by the mission are to be closely related to poverty alleviation at the base of the pyramid, protection of the natural environment through sustainable practices, and socio-cultural transformation towards more open and sensitive mindsets, changing the way people do things in their life, unlocking their human potential through skill development, and also fostering discovery of the fulfilling power of contribution to the greater good.

When a good mission is created it introduces a new perspective which ultimately is to transform the stakeholders’ lives, becoming a symbol within the community. Such a mission has to be spread through compelling and real stories that appeal to the targets’ human spirit, also empowering them to contribute in the activities aligned with the mission accomplishment. Their participation is crucial and they should feel responsible for fulfilling the mission.

The vision depicts how the destination and its stakeholders are to be transformed through the accomplishment of the mission, what the destination aspires to become and attain. The vision has to be the guiding force that motivates all stakeholders to contribute to the mission accomplishment and become brand ambassadors for the destination.

Marketing the mission and vision to the stakeholders is to be a critical step in the transformation, in order to engage them in the collaboration and innovation efforts, in view of a better future for the destination’s community. This is to be explained in the section about Internal Marketing.

Once the mission and vision are defined, they have to be turned into goals to better focus the strategies and efforts towards the mission accomplishment. Further, these goals have to be converted into a series of specific, measurable and time-bounded objectives which are to be the reference upon which performance is tracked throughout the implementation of the marketing plan.

Such goals and objectives are to be classified in many different areas of scope:

  • Mission goals and objectives, related to poverty alleviation, environment protection or socio-cultural transformation.
  • Business goals and objectives, related to financial performance and business model development.
  • Marketing goals and objectives, related to brand awareness, storytelling contribution and popularity, content delivery, merchandise sales, etc.

All these goals and objectives are to be used in the definition of the key performance indicators to track the success in the implementation process of the plan.

Which do you think will be the key success factors in defining the adequate Mission, Vision and Goals, beyond stakeholder participation?

Collaborative cultureMarketing 3.0SustainabilityThird sector and social sustainabilityTourism marketing

Key concepts of tourism 3.0: Communitization

In marketing 3.0, consumers gather in communities, which become the main source of information when assessing brands and products. The trust has gone from vertical to horizontal, and consumers trust other consumers rather than companies.

Therefore, communities are the new marketing channels, and so brands should encourage and help consumers join these communities. Eventually, so long as brands deliver the promised value, communities are expected to support them by becoming a network of brand ambassadors.

Brands have to understand that communities are trust networks that exist to support its members, and therefore the strategy to gain the trust of the network members is to support the members by addressing their concerns and aspirations. This is something that has to start in the mission definition phase, and by identifying such concerns and aspirations, the destination model may create a value proposition that addresses them to engage the community members.

What kind of cultural barriers do you think need to be overcome by the destination executives to empower the communities to develop the aforementioned role?

Co-creationCollaborative cultureCulture changeInnovative cultureMarketing 3.0

Key concepts of tourism 3.0: Tourists 3.0, the creative society

The main drivers of the socio-cultural change entailing the aforementioned trends are called the “creative society”, hereby referred to as “Tourists 3.0”. Such tourists are concerned about the impact of the tourism activity on the environment and the local communities, and are driven by the aim for contribution to make the world a better place, and for spiritual fulfillment above other motivations, which makes them the primary target to take into account in mission driven destinations.

Tourists 3.0 are engaged in communities and are very active in social media networks, where they are opinion leaders and change agents. Such networks are becoming the main and most trusted source of information for most consumers who increasingly trust other consumers rather than companies. It is through these social networks that consumers share their knowledge and are to share stories about the life-changing experiences offered in the destinations.

Unlike typical passive consumers, tourists 3.0 are willing to take an active role in their relationships with their favorite brands, through co-creation of products and marketing contents. They want to be active players in the brand’s marketing activities, mostly through the social media networks. They are the ones who hold the community’s trust, and so have the power to decide which brands are to be supported.

In the destination, they look for authentic experiences through which to develop new skills, learn about new realities, cultures, and ways of life, which open their mindset and ultimately change or influence his life. These are the so called life-changing experiences that set destinations 3.0 apart from others.

Beyond developing life-changing experiences, what challenges do you think that tourists 3.0 pose to the destination’s executives to leverage all their influence power?

Collaborative cultureMarketing 3.0Sustainability

Key concepts of tourism 3.0: Human spirit driven mission

As with non-profit organizations, destinations approaching the “Vision of tourism 3.0” intend to address some of the issues that concern the stakeholder community, primarily related to environmental protection, socio-cultural transformation and poverty alleviation.

Such a mission is at the core of the destination model’s value proposition and hence is also the essence of its brand identity, being the main driver of the so called “human spirit marketing”. This new marketing concept approaches not only the clients’ needs and emotions, but also their spirit. Such a mission has to be the primary goal of the destination model, to really engage all kinds of stakeholders. Only by being faithful to the mission will the destination model keep the stakeholders commitment and transform them into an expanding network of brand ambassadors who end up being the drivers of the destination’s marketing system.

Such a mission and its related vision is the guiding force that motivates all stakeholders to contribute to the expansion of the destination model, bringing in all their creativity and effort in benefit to the community.

What types of missions do you envision to commit the local community and appeal to the tourists’ human spirit?