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UK Tourism: What’s Sport Got To Do With It?

Are you excited about the World Cup? We certainly are. Nothing seems to bring people together like sport, and of course, we’re rooting for England.

All eyes are on Brazil right now, and we can’t help but think of the effect the tournament will have on their tourism industry. The question is even more pertinent when we consider the fact that we’re hosting our own world cup (the Rugby one) next year here in the UK.

Ever since the Olympics in 2012, we’ve seen tourism figures for visitors to the UK go from strength to strength. We were lucky to avoid the so-called post-Olympic ‘curse’ that sparks a lull in tourism.

The spotlight was put on London, and London delivered. Its status (and by proxy, the whole country’s status) as a must-visit destination doesn’t seem to be changing any time soon. What role does sport play in this?

Some would argue that the recent success of UK tourism is not so much to do with the golden aftermath of the Olympics, and more attributable to the fact that there were a series of internationally high-profile events in quick succession: the royal wedding, the Golden Jubilee, the royal birth.

There is probably an element of truth to this – the fact that the royals are a significant draw for tourists can’t be underestimated. But it would be obtuse to deny the role sporting attractions have to play.

We are a sporting nation, famous not only for ubiquitous football, but for cricket, tennis, rugby…the list goes on. The homes of these sports, such as Lords cricket ground or Twickenham stadium, draw plenty of visitors to their museums and stadium tours.

Then there’s the fact that we are home to some of the most high profile football clubs in the world. Manchester United, Chelsea and Arsenal are just a

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few examples of clubs with an international brand and fans across the globe.

For these fans, the chance to come to the UK and experience the home grounds of their favourite clubs first hand is more than enough reason to pick the UK as a holiday destination.

A wealth of organisations benefit from the slew of sports tourists visiting the UK. Sports tour operators arrange visits to stadium tours and games, and sports bars and restaurants such as the recently opened Café Football in Westfield Stratford City also capitalise on the trend.

So what will the future hold for tourism in 2015? Inevitably there’ll be plenty of rugby enthusiasts descending on the capital to enjoy the games and the atmosphere. And if current trends are anything to go by, the tournament will only enhance the UK’s reputation as a globally significant sports tourism destination.

Marketing a small business on a shoe-string with Rhubarb Fool Part II

Follow Rhubarb Fool‘s top tips on marketing a small business

2. Look local

Sometimes it’s difficult to see the wood for the trees. Sometimes it’s difficult to see the trees for the wood. You don’t always have to think big when it comes to your marketing efforts. Look around you at what’s in front of your nose. Find out what’s going on in your community. Sponsor your local under elevens football team, participate in a fun run, or sponsored swim. Print bookmarks and leave them at the local library. Think about your ideal customer and where they might want to spend their time. Then identify the opportunities to bring your marketing message to their attention.

3. Collaborate

Establish links with local, non-competitive businesses and establish joint purpose by cross promoting. You can use coupons, joined up website links, shared promotions or social media platforms. By collaborating with other businesses in your community, you can extend your customer base by allowing your company to travel new pathways to the market place.

4. It’s nice to Network

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5. Put yourself at the lectern.

Public speaking is something that a lot of people will endeavour to avoid. But in

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The public relations sector has changed markedly over recent years, largely as a result of technological advancements. It’s now far easier than it was to interact with the different forms of media around you. Look and you’ll find that there are plenty of media outlets around you that are looking for a story. Find out how such a story could help your company and make it happen.

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The disconnect between the content travellers want and what they get

Bloggers must match the traveller mindset when it comes to content.

Gary Bembridge of TravellersTips.com has revealed research revealing a disconnect between the content wanted by travellers versus what bloggers think they want.

Travellers want advice and tips foremost while bloggers think it’s about anecdotes and stories.

When it came to specifics, advice on getting value for money was important to 54% of travellers versus the 13% of bloggers who thought it was important, reviews and recommendations was important to 52% versus 17% of bloggers and more general advice important to 48% compared with 36% of bloggers.

“The majority of travellers don’t travel. Most will travel less than six weeks a year and nearly half travel for two weeks a year. One of the most important things for travellers is not inspiration, It’s

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“It’s about content that confirms they are making the right decision and helps them make the most out of their limited travellers.”

There is also a danger that we are losing a generation of travellers by not providing for those who want to be always connected and sharing content.

Julia Lo Bue-Said, Managing Director of Advantage Travel Centres, said: “If we are not careful we will. We’re travelling in multi-generational families now. It’s hard to search online for the types of experience they are looking for. It needs to be more sophisticated and more inspirational.”

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UK Reaps Tourism Benefits as a Result of the 2012 Olympic Games

London and the UK are receiving a massive tourism boost from the 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games.

Almost two-thirds of senior industry executives attending World Travel Market this week state there has been an increase in demand for London following the Games, including more than a quarter that say there has been much more interest.

Furthermore, this interest has spread to the whole of the UK with 54% of the 1,277 senior industry executives polled stating an upturn in holidaymakers’ appeal for the UK.

As a result of the increased levels of interest, 52% of senior industry executives have increased their capacity for London and 42% have increased their capacity for the UK following the Games. The statistics fly in the face of concerns at the time

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London and the UK while most pessimistic commentators claimed they would lead to a future drop in visitor numbers.

Reed Travel Exhibitions, Senior Exhibition Director, World Travel Market Simon Press said: “It just goes to show that if you get something the size and ambition of the Olympics right, the benefits down the line will be considerable. “For more than two glorious weeks the eyes of the world were focused on the UK and the country delivered. Every man, woman and child who helped make the event such a success should feel very proud of the positive impact they have made and we hope the country continues to reap the benefits.”

– See more at: http://www.wtmlondon.com/page.cfm/action=press/libID=1/libEntryID=2199/listID=1#sthash.4keBJB7M.dpuf

Travel spotlight for 2014 falls on social media and mobile

The spotlight falls on social media and mobile trends as well as how online penetration continues apace for some destinations.

A session on how Facebook is now in every stage of the travel process, from dreaming and planning to experiencing and reflecting – with a senior exec from the social network unsurprisingly drew a huge audience.

Few companies grasp Facebook’s value as a conversion tool, Lee McCabe, its head of travel, told those gathered.

Still on the subject of social, a panel organised by Travel Bloggers Unite came out firmly in favour of the impact of bloggers in the booking funnel.

Bloggers can have a positive effect on many stages of the booking cycle according to experts on the panel.

Mobile was also a theme on Day two at The Travel Tech Show at WTM with Gary Morrison, Expedia’s retail boss, leading a session on the opportunities it creates that have never before been possible.

During an ‘Are you mobile?’ session, he said it should be thought of as ‘fundamentally different’ not least because of its multi-channel nature.

A further highlight was news that Germany is set to become Europe’s biggest online travel market within the next five years according to a new report.

PhoCusWright Director, Research Luke Bujarski said that while Germany’s internet travel market currently has a penetration of 36%, lagging other countries, this is set to change.

The Travel Tech Show at WTM derives from the Technology region of WTM. The region grew by 70% between 2010 and 2012, leading the launch of ‘the show within a show’ concept. The Travel Technology Show welcomes an extra 61 exhibitors . Amadeus, Comtec, Pegasus and Dolphin Dynamics are some of the familiar reservations and booking technology firms exhibiting this year. But other sectors such as email marketing, reviews management and consumer-facing bedbanks will be represented by newcomers such as Silverpop, reputation.com and Venere.

– See more at: http://www.wtmlondon.com/page.cfm/action=press/libID=1/libEntryID=2342/listID=1#sthash.R9KpX8VR.dpuf

Rhubarb Fool LGBT TRAVEL CONTENT

LGBT Tourism Breaks Through USD$200 Billion in Annual Spending

The world’s leading LGBT tourism trade association today released new research showing the annual spend on tourism

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by lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people will exceed USD$200 billion for the first time in 2014.

Out Now Business Class www.OutNowBusinessClass.com presented the latest findings from the world’s largest LGBT market research study LGBT2020 today at a special Masterclass on LGBT tourism trends at World Travel Market in London, the leading event for the global tourism industry.

The new LGBT2020 data showed that the top 20 markets for LGBT tourism now account for annual travel spending of USD$202 billion.

The largest spending markets were the USA (USD$56.5 billion) and Brazil (USD$25.3 billion).

Out Now Business Class also announced new affiliate relationships with ETOA (European Tour Operators Association) and GALTA (Gay and Lesbian Tourism Australia).

ONBC and ETOA jointly released a new LGBT2020 Report on European Tourism showing the total value of spending on travel by LGBT Europeans will next year account for USD$66.1 billion of total tourism spending.

Also presenting during today’s LGBT Masterclass presented

by ONBC at WTM were Polo Sánchez-Valle Ortega from the Mexico Tourism Board, Jay Munro Michell of ETOA, Richard Gray of Fort Lauderdale CVB and Darren Cooper of Out Now Global.

The CEO of Out Now Global, Ian Johnson, also announced today that ONBC is now the largest global LGBT tourism trade organisation of its type.

“Out Now always works very hard to deliver the best from all our work, so for us the successful launch of the Out Now Business Class tourism trade association for the industry has been really important,” Johnson said. “ONBC is not only delivering unequalled levels of education, networking and research to members, we are pleased the industry has understood the many benefits we are hard-wiring into the ONBC system to help businesses do better in their LGBT marketing and that sees our membership now exceed 2,300 members worldwide. That makes Out Now Business Class by far the largest LGBT tourism networking association in the world.”

Johnson explained that those organisations training staff in the ONBC system as an included part of their membership become eligible to become certified on the new OutNow.travel www.OutNow.travel consumer website which is backed by many of the world’s leading LGBT media providers.

Johnson also said the results presented during the ONBC Masterclass at WTM today had much to keep the industry thinking on about how to best understand and meet the needs of the global LGBT travel market.

“It is great that the value of LGBT tourism spending now exceeds USD$202 billion but there are still many challenges the industry needs to address,” Johnson said. “Staff training is essential to help get staff up to speed with what has become an unstoppable LGBT consumer revolution for the travel industry. We are obviously pleased that all ONBC members now receive unlimited online staff training to help deliver better understanding and customer service to LGBT guests.”

Johnson also pointed out that the acronym LGBT may soon be replaced by the more inclusive LGBTI – recognising an increasing awareness of Intersex issues in society. “Intersex people are becoming more visible and their unique issues are slowly becoming better understood,” Johnson said. “In a number of markets in which Out Now works the acronym LGBT is now routinely being superseded by LGBTI and the global tourism industry definitely needs more education on what being Intersex means.”

http://www.wtmlondon.com/page.cfm/action=press/libID=1/libEntryID=2343/listID=1#sthash.4Uh7MEJw.dpuf