Emerg­ing mar­kets on MOT radar

TravTalk - India - - CONTENT - ANKITA SAX­ENA

The Min­istry of Tourism, Gov­ern­ment of In­dia, is un­der­tak­ing ag­gres­sive mar­ket­ing and pro­mo­tional cam­paigns un­der a re­struc­tured scheme. With a the­matic and mar­ket spe­cific In­cred­i­ble In­dia 2.0 cam­paign, the min­istry is tar­get­ing emerg­ing mar­kets like Ja­pan, Spain, China and Rus­sia.

This year at ITB Ber­lin, the del­e­ga­tion from the Min­istry of Tourism, Gov­ern­ment of In­dia, will be led by the Tourism Min­is­ter along with the Joint Sec­re­tary and two of­fi­cials from the department. Of­fi­cials from the lo­cal of­fices of MOT in Europe will also be join­ing them at the show, in­forms Rashmi Verma, Sec­re­tary, Min­istry of Tourism, Gov­ern­ment of In­dia.

Verma in­forms that In­dia was the part­ner coun­try with FITUR this year and re­ceived a very warm re­sponse. Apart from the al­ready es­tab­lished mar­kets like the US and Europe, MOT is ag­gres­sively tar­get­ing the new emerg­ing source mar­kets like Ja­pan, China and Rus­sia. Ded­i­cated cam­paigns are be­ing planned for th­ese mar­kets. She states that a new in­te­grated mar­ket­ing plan is un­der­way for the next year whereby a cen­tralised cam­paign will be run by MOT and will have a de­tailed plan for the overseas of­fices. “It was en­cour­ag­ing to see a lot of in­ter­est be­ing gen­er­ated for In­dia. Ag­gres­sive brand­ing was un­der­taken and was very well re­ceived. Spain has emerged as one of our key source mar­kets and we feel that we need to fo­cus more on the South Amer­i­can con­ti­nent, one which is show­ing a lot of in­ter­est for her­itage and eco­tourism prod­ucts in In­dia. We need to have ded­i­cated cam­paigns in Por­tu­gal and other Span­ish speak­ing coun­tries,” Verma adds.

The Min­istry of Tourism has com­pletely changed its overseas mar­ket­ing plan. Verma ex­plains that un­der the re­struc­tured scheme, a hub-and-spoke model is be­ing adopted whereby MOT will hold eight tourist of­fices abroad which will act as tourism hubs. “Public Re­la­tions agen­cies will be em­ployed for dis­sem­i­na­tion of in­for­ma­tion. The Mis­sions and Em­bassies have shown keen in­ter­est in this strat­egy and will be in­stru­men­tal in iden­ti­fy­ing the mar­ket­ing agen­cies soon,” she adds.

Verma be­lieves that the In­cred­i­ble In­dia 2.0 cam­paign is mar­ket and prod­uct spe­cific un­like the pre­vi­ous, generic cam­paign. She ex­plains, “It is more the­matic in na­ture and to sup­port the same we have made new films for ev­ery prod­uct. We have done our re­search and mar­ket anal­y­sis to iden­tify the prod­ucts in de­mand in spe­cific mar­kets and will run the cam­paigns ac­cord­ingly. We are fo­cus­ing on pro­mot­ing niche tourism prod­ucts like golf tourism, cruise tourism, ad­ven­ture tourism, well­ness and cui­sine, etc. For ex­am­ple, one of our films on well­ness and Yoga is up and run­ning in the Euro­pean mar­ket since the de­mand for th­ese prod­ucts is high there.”

To in­cen­tivise for­eign tour op­er­a­tors to pro­mote In­dia and gen­er­ate de­mand, MOT will be­gin giv­ing brochure sup­port to key for­eign tour op­er­a­tors again. “It is im­por­tant that In­dia fea­tures in the itin­er­ar­ies of the FTOs and for that we are go­ing to give them this sup­port. We will also con­duct Fam trips to give first-hand ex­pe­ri­ence of the des­ti­na­tion.”

When asked about the launch date of the new web­site which has been long awaited, Verma points out that MOT has com­pleted the ex­er­cise of con­tent cu­ra­tion and will now be test­ing the same in a pilot phase with lim­ited users to fine-tune it fur­ther. “The web­site is more per­son­alised and in­ter­ac­tive and I am sure that there will be a marked dif­fer­ence in the user ex­pe­ri­ence.”

Up­dat­ing on the progress made un­der the Adopt a Her­itage scheme, Verma ex­plains that NBCC and Ya­tra.com have submitted their de­tailed plans for the adopted mon­u­ments and have al­ready re­ceived the clear­ance from ASI. “Since ASI is in­volved with de­vis­ing the plans for the scheme from the be­gin­ning, get­ting ap­provals for the same is fast track and easy. We have also signed MoUs with two state gov­ern­ments—Ut­tarak­hand and Jammu and Kash­mir for main­te­nance and up­grad­ing of trekking routes.”

Ad­dress­ing the tout men­ace at ma­jor tourist sites, the Tourism Sec­re­tary as­sures that the Min­istry is in di­a­logue with var­i­ous state gov­ern­ments and has re­ceived as­sur­ances that there will be con­crete steps taken to han­dle this is­sue. “We are work­ing on de­vel­op­ing 10 iconic sites as an­nounced by the Finance Min­is­ter. We have con­ducted a pre­lim­i­nary gap anal­y­sis and are wait­ing to fin­ish the stake­holder con­sul­ta­tion by mid-April. Af­ter the re­search is com­plete, we will ex­e­cute the plans al­ready in place,” she adds.

Spain has emerged as one of our key source mar­kets and we feel that we need to fo­cus more on the South Amer­i­can con­ti­nent which is show­ing a lot of in­ter­est for her­itage and eco­tourism prod­ucts in In­dia. We need to have ded­i­cated cam­paigns in Por­tu­gal and other Span­ish speak­ing coun­tries. Rashmi Verma Sec­re­tary, Min­istry of Tourism, Gov­ern­ment of In­dia

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