Trends in Tourism Marketing for BC

By Darryl Leniuk | Digital Marketing

Oct 31
DBC workshop

Last week I attended a tourism marketing seminar for the Vancouver, Coast and Mountains region organized by Destination British Columbia (DBC). Not surprisingly, digital marketing was the big focus. Here are a few highlights;

Collaboration is Key

The first speaker, DBC’s CEO, Marsha Walden, shared some high-level views of the global tourism industry:

  • By 2030 global international travel is expected to reach 1.8 Billion people per year.
  • Half of all trips are now  booked online.
  • Over half of all travellers use digital resources (i.e. smartphones and apps) in their travel destination.

While most of these numbers were not unexpected, I found DBC’s answer was. The key to winning in this crazy competitive sector is through collaboration, across all levels of tourism business, DMO’s, community organizations and government. Bringing such a disparate group together will be a challenge, but the solution is content. “Siri and Alexa are the best players on our team,” said Walden.

Share, Share, Share

The next part of the presentation was Global Content. Here is what DBC is doing in the content department:

  • BC’s two main themes for content are ‘urban’ and ‘wildlife’.
  • DBC has now begun hosting Youtube FAM trips and video is now being shot vertical for mobile.
  • The travel influencer market is too crowded; only niche influencers are relevant now.
  • Facebook cross-posting is a great way for tourism businesses to share and amplify their content.

Google is Big into Travel

Google’s Meg Bush filled us in on what that powerful little search box has been revealing about our travel habits lately:

  • People love looking and planning for travel. YouTube travel downloads are up 90%.
  • Marketers need content and strategy for the four stages of travel in ‘micro moments’. Dream. Plan. Book. Experience.
  • The trio of Google Trips, Destinations and Maps is getting even more powerfully integrated and will keep more people in Google’s ecosystem.

Tagging is Knowledge

DBC’s Richard Bergan gave a great presentation on the power of tagging for digital marketing. These are snippets of code embedded into websites that help track indirect referrals and build audience insights through analytics. If every tourism business in the province embraces tags, we’ll have more of that priceless big data, and be better able to attract even more tourists to Super Natural BC.