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2016 News

VisitEngland – Discover England Fund Product Development Case Studies

(Added November 2016)

VisitEngland’s industry consultations relating to the Discover England Fund underlined the importance of learning lessons from existing leading product development initiatives in the UK or overseas. Consequently, VisitEngland (VE) decided to commission a series of case studies, to provide insight about best practice in product development for the tourism industry generally and, more specifically, to guide VE and tourism businesses and organisations in developing concepts and proposals for projects which might receive support from the Discover England Fund. The types of products that VE has in mind are itineraries, routes, corridors and thematic groupings; and ‘joined up product’ – for example, thematic consortia, use of digital/tech solutions, transport-related options such as through-ticketing, destination passes and pricing solutions).

TEAM was commissioned to work with VE/VB to identify and undertake an initial group of between five and ten directly relevant case studies of product development. TEAM identified a ‘long list’ of 18 potentially relevant projects, which were evaluated against the criteria set by VE. Based on this, VE selected six for the first set of case studies:

  • Wild Atlantic Way, Ireland – Touring Route
  • Vennbahn Cycle Route – Cycling Routes
  • St Olav Ways, Norway – Cultural/Walking Routes
  • Margaret River Region, Australia – Food and Drink Experiences
  • Signature Experiences Programme, Canada – Experience Marketing
  • Switzerland Tourism & Partners – Transport-based packaging.

The case studies are complete and due to be published on the web by VisitEngland during December 2016.

ETC-UNWTO – Handbook on Marketing Transnational Tourism Themes and Routes

(Added November 2016)

ETCTransIn November 2015, TEAM was commissioned by the European Travel Commission (ETC) and the World Tourism Organisation (UNWTO) to prepare a Handbook on Marketing Transnational Tourism Themes and Routes. The Handbook provides:

  • A global overview of tourism and cooperation across borders, with particular reference to transnational routes
  • Practical guidance for National Tourism Organisations/Administrations (NTOs/NTAs) and Destination Management Organisations (DMOs) on how to market and promote destinations through transnational thematic tourism experiences and products.

In preparing the 200 page Handbook, TEAM was assisted by a panel of experts from around the world, and by research support provided by SKEMA Business School in Nice. The team:

  • Undertook extensive web-based research to identify and document transnational tourism initiatives worldwide, creating a comprehensive database
  • Interviewed key players involved in the development and marketing of successful themed products and routes, producing a set of 10 case studies
  • Drafted a Practical Guide for transnational cooperation, taking the partner destinations from an initial desire for collaboration to roll-out and marketing.

It is anticipated that the Handbook will be published by the UNWTO the first half of 2017.

ETC – Report on European Tourism Competitiveness in a transforming global marketplace

(Added November 2016)

In August 2016, VVA Europe and TEAM were commissioned to undertake an analysis of the way in which economic, social and other factors, together with strategic shifts in market growth and decision making, are impacting on the competitiveness and competitive positioning of the European tourism industry, as a basis for future policy by ETC’s member national tourism organisations.

The project has three broad elements:

  • Identifying the ways in which the competitiveness of European tourism destinations is changing, in relation to destinations elsewhere in the world; and the way in which shifts in the growth and decision making in the main world tourism markets will affect Europe’s competitive positioning;
  • Reviewing case studies of global best practice in facing and mitigating challenges and/or exploiting opportunities, thereby identifying successful actions that could be adapted/replicated at political and managerial level in Europe;
  • Providing ETC with strategic recommendations and guidance on how to overcome “competitive gaps” that European tourist destinations and stakeholders are facing.

The output of this study will be a strategic report which will provide European tourist destinations and stakeholders with insights and concrete actions on how to respond to the changing PESTEL and market environment, to their own advantage.

European Cities Tourism Report

(Added November 2016)

WTCF Logo

In May 2016, the World Tourism Cities Federation (WTCF) commissioned TEAM Tourism Consulting to work with other WTCF Experts to research and write a report providing an analysis of the scale, nature and patterns of tourism in European cities, as well as some of the most important issues related to it. The purpose of this report was to assess the state of tourism in European cities and to identify key trends and opportunities impacting on growth prospects, for the benefit of WTCF Member cities in Europe and elsewhere in the world.

The report is in three parts: a statistical analysis of tourism-related data and indices; an overview of European air transport; and case studies of selected cities highlighting major factors influencing the respective cities' tourism growth – a combination of quantitative and qualitative analyses. The themes of the case studies selected are:

  • Low-cost Airline Services: with a primary focus on Barcelona, Berlin and Prague
  • Smart Tourism in Smart Cities: Amsterdam, Copenhagen and Paris
  • The Sharing Economy: Amsterdam, Barcelona and Berlin.

Experience in other cities is also presented and discussed at relevant points in the report.

A range of different statistical sources was used for the compilation of this report. The primary source of tourism performance data was TourMIS, which is the leading platform for exchanging and analysing city tourism statistics in Europe and is the source of data for European Cities Marketing's (ECM's) Annual Benchmarking Report. The report also provides performance indicators from a number of other sources available in the public domain, each of which is distinct, addressing different aspects of city capacity, competitiveness or attractiveness – not necessarily directly related to tourism. In addition, the report includes published data and tourism-related analyses from existing third party source.

TEAM was responsible for the analysis and presentation of the various performance indicators other than TourMIS and those relating to European air transport and for six of the nine case studies.

The report is due to be published in December or January.

Fáilte Ireland – Preparation of Visitor Experience Development Plans - Skellig Coast and Connemara/The Burren/Cliffs of Moher

(Added November 2016)

Skellig

Fáilte Ireland commissioned TEAM, in partnership with EarthCheck and local partner Boland Marketing, to develop a Visitor Experience Plan for the Skellig Coast in County Kerry on the west coast of Ireland, within the designated area of the Wild Atlantic Way. The primary aim of the project was to stimulate the creation of outstanding visitor experiences that will motivate people to visit the area and provide a high level of visitor satisfaction – the experiences being be aligned to the Wild Atlantic Way brand, target markets and segments. The project had also the objective of influencing the capital, infrastructural and human resource developments required to achieve the primary aim.

The mission of the project was to:

  • Enthuse and engage businesses and local partners
  • Maintain business engagement that would extend well beyond the project lifetime
  • Build lasting links between national partners and local tourism experience development
  • Develop a process that was responsive to the circumstances of the Skellig Coast, but which would also provide a model that could be applied elsewhere.

The project started in May 2016 and was completed in November 2016.

The approach included the following elements:

  • Understanding the Situation – Research and Desktop Review (including Visitor experience audit, Market review and Best practice case studies); Visioning workshop with Fáilte Ireland and Workshop with the Project Working Group.
  • Stakeholder engagement – Stakeholder consultation; Summary of the workshop outcomes
  • Experience Development Planning – Identification of draft signature experiences, hero products and infrastructure gaps; Experience development workshops to test signature experience and engage stakeholders; Refinement of presentation of signature / hero experiences to Project Working Group; Development of operator and partner workbooks; Knowledge transfer workshop and cluster workshops to roll-out program.
  • Experience Development Plan – Preparation of Skellig Coast Experience Development Plan; Delivery of Plan to Working Group for review; Incorporation of feedback into final Plan; Pilot project debrief and Pilot Program Outcomes Report; Refinement of KPIs, action and Implementation plan; Support to local networks.

In November 2016, TEAM, EarthCheck and Boland Marketing were commissioned to prepare two more Visitor Experience Development Plans, for Connemara & The Burren and for the Cliffs of Moher. The approach will build on the process used in Skellig, but be adapted to the local circumstances. In addition to individual discussions and workshops with potential experience providers on the ground, the work will include adaptation of Visitor Experience Workbooks for use in these areas, a comprehensive ‘story mapping’ exercise, and the initiation of a mentoring programme for leading, proactive tourism operators.

Historic Environment Scotland - HES Investment Planning

(Added November 2016)

Between August and December 2016, TEAM’s Managing Director, Dr Roger Carter, assisted Historic Environment Scotland (HES) to develop a framework for decision making on investment in enhancing the visitor experience at the historic properties in its care - more specifically, how funds available for investment should be allocated between HES properties.

The work involved a series of workshops with HES management to agree on a list of investment criteria and to determine the priorities between them. In order to test and refine the method developed, it was applied by HES staff to several examples of key properties.

Province of Drenthe – Trends in (Heritage) Tourism: An International Perspective

(Added November 2016)

The Province of Drenthe (Netherlands) is in the process of developing a strategic narrative for the marketing of its heritage. The Cultuurnota 2017-2020, de Verbeelding van Drenthe defines strategic narrative as a collection of overarching storylines bringing focus and coherence in the presentation and marketing of Drenthe’s past. The storylines are intended to assist in comprehending the past and communicating attractively and powerfully Drenthe’s cultural and natural heritage to visitors.

To this end, the Provincial Executive Board wished to gather knowledge about trends in (heritage ) tourism, visitors’ wishes and needs – information to support the creation of the strategic narrative, product development and marketing communications. TEAM was commissioned to assist them to do this, also by offering inspiring/best practice cases.

TEAM produced a concise report on international tourism that:

  • Brought together key findings of the most important research reports/institutions
  • Highlighted major international trends, developments and themes and their implications
  • Reviewed the outbound travel market segments that have a particular interest in cultural and heritage tourism
  • Provided insights into consumer motivations, needs and expectations, decision making processes and booking behaviour
  • Included case studies illustrating the way in which comparator destinations handle tourism strategy & planning and branding & marketing
  • Suggestions/sources for further research.

Review of DMO operations

(Added November 2016)

In June 2016 TEAM was commissioned to undertake research into current Destination Management Organisation (DMO) practice in England, and future options.

The project involved:

  • A survey of Destination Management Organisations (DMOs) looking at identifying different delivery models and key performance measures. This identified a number of different approaches to engagement with the private, DMO turnover, sources of income and areas of expenditure
  • A series of interviews with DMO Chief Executives to explore issues in more depth.

The project identified a number of potential approaches based on different DMO models and appraised their relative strengths and weaknesses.

TEAM delivered the final report in August 2016.

National Forest Joint Tourism Business Engagement and Revenue Generation Models Feasibility Study

(Added November 2016)

In October 2016, The National Forest Company, in association with its neighbouring Destination Management Organisations (Staffordshire Tourism, LeicesterShire Promotions and Marketing Peak District & Derbyshire) chose TEAM to undertake a study to scope new joint working arrangements and assess the feasibility. The aims are to:

  • better coordinate and manage tourism business engagement
  • identify possible new joint membership options
  • Identify other joint revenue generation models e.g. joint campaigns to further the aims of tourism development across The National Forest.

Marketing Manchester - Strategic Vision for Visitor Information Provision in Greater Manchester

(Added November 2016)

In March 2016 and against the background of increasing pressures on public spending and the need to ‘do more with less’, Marketing Manchester commissioned TEAM to help provide a revised, sustainable and innovative model for tourist information provision in collaboration with its partners. Whilst the work was focused on the City of Manchester, the aim was to find a solution that could be rolled out in the other nine districts of Greater Manchester.

TEAM’s work involved a Market and Performance Review, including a review of market and technology developments; a review of performance of current information provision in Greater Manchester; and a review of good practice in information provision. There were also consultations and interactive engagement with key stakeholders. This work led to the preparation of a Situation Report and Options Appraisal, followed by a Strategic Vision.

Tourism Evaluation of South Northamptonshire

(Added November 2016)

In November 2016, TEAM has been commissioned by South Northamptonshire Council to carry out an evaluation of tourism in its area. Based on site visits, secondary data and policy analysis and consultation with both tourism businesses and public sector stakeholders, the study will: explore:

  • The impact of current marketing activity;
  • The opportunities for tourism development in South Northamptonshire building on some of its key assets like Silverstone, Towcester Racecourse and its market towns;
  • The interventions that the council needs to make in the visitor economy.

Keats House Income Study

(Added November 2016)

Keats HouseKeats House is a museum and literary centre dedicated to the memory of John Keats, who lived and wrote some of his most memorable poetry here. In the first half of 2016, TEAM produced a study of potential income opportunities at Keats House in London, for the City of London Corporation.

The site is currently operating a significant loss. The goal was to ‘research options for increasing income earned through commercial exploitation of the site, whilst continuing to open the house to the public.’

The work was undertaken in partnership with architects Kilburn Nightingale, who proposed a complete restructuring of the site. TEAM Tourism proposed, in parallel, as radical rethink of commercial operations, while raising the profile of this culturally important site.

TEAM’s final report identifying several investment and development options, enabling Keats House to increase revenues and provide, in some cases, an economic return for the City of London.

Roger Carter presents to tourism and culture professionals in China

(Added November 2016)

Global Tourism Economic ForumOctober 2016 saw TEAM’s MD, Roger Carter, returning to China for an intensive programme of speaking engagements. His first port of call was Macau, for the Global Tourism Economic Forum, where he gave a presentation on “Key factors underlying the growth in city tourism”. The day before the Forum, he participated in a World Tourism Cities Federation seminar, where he gave a keynote presentation on” International tourism marketing for cities - concepts and examples”.

He then moved on to Shanghai, where he participated in the World Cities Culture Forum, giving a presentation on “The role of culture and heritage in developing tourism in world cities” and participating in a high-level ‘Round Table’ discussion on ‘Culture and City Branding’. The day after the Forum, he gave a half-day ‘Cultural Tourism Masterclass’ at Shanghai’s Huashan Multiversity.

The following week, Roger was off to Beijing to deliver a full day’s training on strategic subjects to 200 staff of the Beijing Municipal Commission for Tourism Development. There were four sessions, each consisting of a presentation followed by discussion, with subjects as follows:

  • Key factors underlying the growth in city tourism;
  • Keys to success in destination marketing.
  • International city marketing case studies.
  • Use of digital media for destination management and marketing.

Stirling Tourism Destination Benchmarking Study.

(Added May 2016)

StirlingScottish Enterprise, on behalf of Destination Stirling, Stirling Council and VisitScotland, has commissioned TEAM to undertake research to benchmark Stirling against similar destinations in other countries, in order to learn from their successful experience in tourism development, in order to guide Stirling’s future strategy.

During the first stage of work, TEAM has conducted discussions with stakeholders to develop a full, up-to-date understanding of the strategic context for this project; review the case study topics and discuss potential comparator cities for evaluation. After selection of comparator cities, TEAM will undertake both desk research and in-destination interviews to prepare case studies on those cities.

Working on this project are: TEAM’s Managing Director, Dr Roger Carter; Project Manager, Sue Crossman; members’ of TEAM’s large network of consultants based in or close to the selected comparator cities; and TEAM researcher, Gaëlle Connolly.

Northern Ireland Visitor Information Plan Mid Term Review.

(Added January 2016)

Cookstown Visitor Information Centre The Burnavon from Tourism Northern Ireland Media LibraryTourism Northern Ireland (TNI) has commissioned TEAM to conduct a mid-point review of the 2010-2020 Northern Ireland Visitor Information Plan. The Plan was prepared by TEAM in 2010, since which time there have been many important changes. Perhaps the most important of these arise from the implementation of RPA, which has resulted in new structures, roles and responsibilities. Tourism Northern Ireland (TNI) wishes to ensure that visitor information will be regarded as a key tourism responsibility of the new Local Authorities and to ensure a collaborative approach in order to achieve “more streamlined visitor information and also efficiency savings.

The core requirements identified in the Specification are to:

a) Review performance in implementing the 2010 VIP so far and

b) To update it, ensuring relevance in today’s environment.

The VIP will be assessed and updated in terms of market and technological change and the opportunity to create new collaborative implementation arrangements. This will help to define roles and responsibilities for all relevant players, including TNI itself, the new Local Authorities and other public and private sector organisations.

Photo Credits – Cookstown Visitor Information Centre The Burnavon (from Tourism Northern Ireland Media Library)