How to run a healthy tourism marketing plan on the Belgian market
Since 1998, we've been following the ups and downs of the Belgian tourist market closely. We have seen destinations that occasionally unleash a wave of campaigns on the Belgian market. We have seen destinations that open offices. And close them. Or they move their business to the Netherlands. Or Germany. The result? You don't hear a word from these destinations anymore here in Belgium. But, that doesn't work: then, just like with dieting, you have a yo-yo effect.
What does work, then? Allow us at Tourism Marketing Group to plot out a healthy, balanced and ingenious marketing diet for your destination on the Belgian market. You have to speak the language of the client and immerse yourself in their world. Understand their living and working situation, follow the news, the media. In short, you have to stay abreast of what's going on and respond to it. Only then can you benefit from all the healthy goodness in your marketing plan. Where do we begin?
Make a plan
To continue the dieting metaphor, think of it like someone who wants to lose weight. If you hear them say, in an unguarded moment: 'I should really lose some weight', you can be pretty sure that the ambition will amount to nothing. You have to make a solid plan and stick to it. It's the same with marketing.
Plot out your marketing and communication plan, from month to month, for at least a year ahead.
Keep your plan realistic
Some people dive straight into the gym with the idea that they're going to shed their excess pounds on their first day and wake up feeling brand new tomorrow. Again, no chance. Keeping your body in top condition is continual process in which you work towards realistic goals, so don't get ahead of yourself.
Set an achievable business goal and work towards it with focus.
Plan your implementation
Get on your bike (two birds, one stone) and cycle to the greengrocer's to stock up your pantry. That way you won't find yourself standing in line at the chip shop after discovering that your fridge is empty. The same principle applies to your marketing plan: work a month ahead so that your promotions are neatly lined up and ready to implement.
Work out the different elements of your plan at least a month in advance and launch them without the burden of time pressures.
Draw up a varied plan
Variation is the key to success, and the crucial factor in sticking to your plan. The fresh produce aisle of your supermarket sells more than just apples. Try a mango for a change, something you wouldn't usually think of. This variation is just as beneficial in marketing: try a medium or channel that you haven't tested before. Then keep what works. And scrap what doesn't.
Combine the best of offline, online and event marketing tools.
Evaluate your plan and adjust course
If you're dieting, you'll want to weigh yourself from time to time. Perhaps the readout will make you want to curse the heavens, but if you keep to the points above, within a year you'll be thanking your lucky stars. Not every marketing campaign will be an overwhelming success. So just be sure to notice in good time, take stock, and adjust your trajectory accordingly.
Use Google Analytics to evaluate your campaigns, check your sales figures or the number of contacts, and adjust accordingly.
A little help with your marketing plan?
You can always call on Tourism Marketing Group for assistance with planning your marketing for the Belgian market. Fair warning: it's still going to be a matter of work, work, work, work, work ... and the occasional adjustment (that's marketing for you). We aim for results. Nothing less. We just don't get ahead of ourselves.
Call us on +32 9 329 02 73, send us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org or fill in the contact form below and we'll be happy to discuss your ambitions with you.