Destination Branding is how the consumer imagines and perceives a destination in their minds. It is not simply about creating a logo or slogan as done with tangible products. This is about appealing to and tantalising the consumer’s wildest imagination and promising them the perfect destination.
It is about telling a story….
It is about sun, sand, sea, romance and happy endings. It is the promise of a story that will sell the package. Storytelling gives brands an emotional appeal and it communicates the value of a brand. It also assists in giving the brand a personality. When we think of Destination Branding, we think of selling an emotion. To sum up, without stories destinations are not interesting. They don’t provide the consumer a means to escape into a dream world where they can act out different identities and perhaps be offered a chance of self-transformation.
To look at this topic from another perspective, one has to examine the impact that technology has had on this type of branding:
• People are using the internet more to give them information regarding tourism destinations. This is due to the dramatic increase in internet usage over the years.
• More and more people are choosing to browse popular tourism sights on their devices rather than popping into their local travel agency for a brochure.
• Due to the technology age we live in, tourism websites have to communicate their branding destinations very clearly.
• They should reflect all the branding components and communicate the destination’s brand identity to the potential visitor.
• The internet user is also more likely to pick sites that they are familiar with. Therefore, it is important to create a destination website that is among the traveller’s favourites as to ensure their repeat visits to that sight and perhaps secure a booking.
• Websites can be an essential component in moving a consumer’s mind from brand awareness to brand preference and finally to brand loyalty. These websites offer experiences and services to the consumer.
• The websites are not merely product based therefore they have to offer a pleasant first impression to the consumer.
• If the experience is impressive enough, the consumer will visit time and time again and eventually remain loyal.
• Another excellent addition to internet based destination research is that information regarding the area and other attractions is easily accessible to the consumer.
As we can see, technology has had a profound impact on Destination Branding and we can only imagine what is waiting for us in the future.