PROMOTING LEBANESE TOURISM

PROMOTING LEBANESE TOURISM

Keeward has been working with Lebanese Tourism Office in Paris since January 2009, developing its marketing campaigns in Europe. We created an interactive tool for the promotion of Lebanon as a destination for the movie industry as well as came up with a series of recommendations to improve the previous website. Read on for an insight into how Keeward approaches its clients’ challenges.

Keeward (previously Amphipole) has been working with Lebanese Tourism Office in Paris since January 2009, developing its marketing campaigns in Europe. We have namely created an interactive tool for the promotion of Lebanon as a destination for the movie industry (www.35mmfrombeirut.com). We have also been involved in the analysis of previous website developments (www.destinationliban.com) and we came up with a series of recommendations which we summarized in a paper similar to this article, which in turn lead to the proposal for a web platform dedicated to touristic marketing for Lebanon aimed at European tourists and tour operators.

Market analysis

The absence of quantitative and qualitative information for European tourists in Lebanon leads us to recommend the launching of a market study that would be focusing on consumer interests and behaviours and the market offers for Lebanon as a destination. We can already say that the competitive environment of other destination like closer and more familiar countries (morocco, Tunisia, Malta, Egypt, turkey) forces us to think of a Lebanese market approach through alternative communication patterns. Furthermore offers with Lebanon as a destination are not available on the market because of the historical uncertainty. Finally the current geopolitical issues, as seen on the media, interfere with communication on Lebanon as a tourist destination.
Therefore we are suggesting setting up a web tool that would meet the following purpose:

  • Relay 360 positive information about Lebanon on website search engines, blogs, online magazines, reference websites and social networks destined for the European consumer
  • Set up an extranet for tour operators so they can get practical and professional information, contacts, procedures and to help them build and sell their offers
  • Online booking system that would lead consumers or professionals to reliable hosting and routing office from European and Lebanese producers
  • Set up dedicated web campaigns (viral, guerrilla, alternative, media oriented campaigns)

This website has to distance itself from rigid institutional communication to send out an efficient and dynamic message that will hit close to home with European tourists and tour operators. It should avoid mercantile approaches, the idea being to inform, convince and mettre en valeur the existing offer. There should be no ads or commercial offers since the purpose is to guide the consumer, not to make money out of the website. This is mandatory in order to maintain legitimacy over the message conveyed.

Benchmarks

CRT côte d’azur – www.cotedazur-tourisme.com

The Regional Tourist Board of the Riviera Côte d’Azur’s mission (CRT côte d’azur) is to promote the destination “Riviera” and implement the tourism policy of the General Council.

It provides monitoring and analysis of attendance and touristic offers, commissions studies on the tourism sector, contributes to the facilitation of underway or planned contracts and projects, contributes to the facilitation of thematic channels, organizes and implements promotions, communicates and markets the Riviera Côte d’Azur destination.

The website they have created for the promotion of the Riviera Côte d’Azur destination is a good example. It displays relevant content, interesting dossiers, an updated newsfeed and various modes of navigation (by type of vacation, by event, by interest) as well as a practical guide. It also hosts a platform for secure reservations.

We have worked with the Regional Tourist Board of the Riviera Côte d’Azur on punctual consulting missions.

Montréal – www.tourisme-montreal.org

In the same way the mentioned website promotes the city of Montreal. It offers information, reservation tools and planning tools. By signing in to their planner create a travel itinerary using your bookmarked places and activities. What’s more, you’ll be able to send your itinerary by e-mail and even create your own online journal with photos and comments about your trip. This website also has our attention for engaging in alternative marketing. It also has special pages by type of user ( traveller, meeting planner, travel professional , journalist) and special maps (ex: fashion maps).

Australia – www.australia.com

Australia.com was awarded the prestigious ‘People’s Voice’ Award at the 13th Annual Webby Awards in the tourism category. Australia.com attracts one million visits each month and is the digital centrepiece of Tourism Australia’s marketing activities around the world. The website was recently given a facelift and features inspirational content about travelling to Australia and the variety of exciting experiences the destination offers, drawing upon new technology, a fresh design and a more user-friendly experience for visitors to the website.

Alliance-Réseaux – www.alliance-reseaux.com

On another note Alliance-Réseaux specialize in computer engineering se well as communication and marketing products and services for tourism and recreation. They have developed a number of applications both for end users or consumers and professionals of the tourism industry. Open System, a concept developed by Alliance Network, was designed to address the issue of mobilization of tourism offers and their distribution across all marketing channels. Developed in collaboration with professional consultants in Tourism, Gestelle is a software that addresses the reality on the ground, the changing needs of the commercial offer and meets the demands of professionals. Gestelle allows the user to search for availability, create a contract, monitor contracts and create accommodation forms.

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