Is the World a better Place for Travel

Worldwide economic slowdown, conflicts and terrorist attacks, and the European refugee crisis, apparently seem to have their impact on the global travel & tourism industry.  However, when we look at the actual trend, the industry has maintained its growth despite all the adversities. A report from IPK International World Travel Monitor, 2015 reports a 4.5% growth in actual outbound trips in 2015, with a healthy increment of 4.3% estimated for 2016.

Outbound travel is primarily fueled by Asia Pacific and North America.  Germany, as a country is the ‘world travel champion’ – a leader in outbound travel. The United States follows Germany and continues to be both a leading source and destination for travel. China enjoys a leadership position in the travel industry, being next only to USA in terms of spending.

The European economy has improved slightly from 2014, primarily due to the growth of Germany. Overall, the forecast for Europe is a net growth of 2.8% in outbound travelers. While Europeans have maintained their momentum, they are likely to travel to safer destinations, avoiding the zones of conflicts and terrorism. Also, there is good growth in inbound travel to Europe, and the expected growth is between 3 to 4 % in 2016. Travelers from China and Asia Pacific countries, USA and Japan are all keen for travelling to Europe.

Outboubound Travel Forecast Percentage GrowthEconomic growth has slowed down to a certain extent in Asia Pacific, but, despite the slowdown, the number of travelers have only increased and the projected growth of 6.3% for outbound travelers is on expected lines. The growth rate as per IMF report for 2015 shows that India’s rate of growth is highest at 7.6%, ahead of China, and therefore, outbound travelers from and to India are expected to increase.

While North America is expected to show good growth in outbound travel, South America’s 1.9% growth is a cause for concern. About half of South America’s outbound travel market is catered to by Brazil and Argentina. Traditionally, South Americans travel internationally within the same region. One international event which could improve the percentage of international travel to Brazil could be the Olympic Games planned to be hosted in the city of Rio de Janeiro this year. The last Football World Cup in Brazil in the year 2014 caused more than half a million visitors to Brazil, and this trend is expected to be seen during the Olympics.

The Middle East travel market is one of the fastest growing markets and countries like Saudi Arabia and United Arab Emirates (UAE) are leaders in this area. The region is noted for travelers with deep pockets, who usually travel for long durations (with average trips for more than 14 nights). Also, more than 30% of travelers are immigrants travelling to meet friends and relatives. Inbound travel to Middle East has been seriously hurt due to the ongoing conflicts in that zone.

Last, but not the least, social media plays a vital role in international travel today. 70% of international travelers are active users of social media such as Facebook, Twitter, WhatsApp, LinkedIn, Google+. About 30% of the international travelers actively use social media for planning their trips. Marketers would do well to be creative with innovative approaches, so as to influence this section of buyers to plan their trips.

DMAi – Digital Marketing Campaigns – A Case Study

Encompassing more than 600 destination marketing organizations (DMOs), spanning over 25 countries, Destination Marketing Association International (DMAi) has become a colossal figure in the world of digital marketing. The current data corroborates the fact that DMAi caters to almost all the iconic DMOs by organizing campaigns, conferences, events and so on, thereby cobbling up platforms for their clientele.

Here are a few case studies corroborating DMAi’s credibility as an organization:

DuPont: In 2010, DMAi partnered with Times Now and DuPont to create two television series; ‘Quest for Zero’ and ‘Challenge for Zero’. The prime objective behind these endeavors was to slowly scale down the mammoth problems faced by India to zero or ‘Shunya’ and create awareness among the youth across the country. Besides, DMAi associates managed to rope in Anupam Kher, the much famed Bollywood actor to host the event so as to garner nationwide viewership. The idea was to highlight the schemes augured by Dupont to attain maximum growth rate at zero cost, reduce the number of hungry mouths to zero, modernise the existing infrastructure at the expense of zero casualties and so on through scientific methods.

Also, DMAi succeeded in showcasing DuPont as a trailblazer among the science based solution providers through numerous strategies. Apart from creating buzz through the digital media, the organization also circulated compelling articles, e-mailers and press releases so as to enable DuPont reach out to its target audience. Dupont also accentuated in popularity through the social media, and television broadcast of a 16 episode series.

The Dupont India website showcased 23 product-specific case studies and 5 films receiving about 160,000 million page views. Business increased manifold with 206 new customers and revenue potential of 5 Million USD.

Kaan Khajoora Teshan: Considering the increasing, ever increasing and everyday increasing population in India and looming power scarcity and poverty, it is, but obvious that a major chunk of the population is unable to access the news and entertainment channels aired on the television channels. In order to combat this problem, Unilever launched a mobile based entertainment channel. Besides being free on demand Kaan Khajoora Teshan caters to about 54 million population which is twice the number of television users. All one needs to do is to keep the mobile battery charged which consumes minimal electricity. By dialling a number catering to KKT hotline, users are able to access entertainment stream.

DMAi has further augmented the brand building activity through promotional messages such as;” Missed Call Lagao, Muft Manoranjan Pao.” The consumers were educated through targeted Outbound Calls. People were told to give a miss call to a toll free number and they received call backs from ‘Kaan Khajoora Teshan’. The pre-tailored programme entailed popular music, Unilever Ad Spots and jokes. Also, there is a Radio Jockey to host the show. Apart from the local and regional shows people are also able to view the movie releases of the year.

The consumer base has been expanding at an average of 25,000 per day. Besides, Kaan Khajoora has also served as a quick medium for promoting Wheel, Ponds white Beauty and Close up products to all the vestibular corridors across the country.

In 2014 a DMAi Awards and DMA International ECHO Awards competitions were conducted witnessing hosts of participants from countries across the globe. The contesting bodies had to fill up the entry forms which cited their goals and objectives behind their marketing efforts and strategies. Remit2India emerged as the ultimate winner. This is because DMAi has been managing its search campaigns for years. In due course of time Remit2India had reached the crux of publicity. However, it started experiencing decadence in the face of stiff competition posed by its competitors. Nevertheless, DMAi managed to revitalize the brand image without incurring additional costs. Currently, Remit2India hosts the highest number of registrations per month. Apart from managing to cap the cost per registration with just 6% higher than before, DMAi has also launched versatile Exchange Rate bearing ads. Currently, Remit2India advertisements have garnered 27 % of clicks in the US alone as compared to its staggering counterparts in the industry.