Are you wondering where the name ‘TOPOSOPHY’ comes from? Viewing a destination through a narrow lens, it’s easy to fall into the trap of presenting a destination in terms of its tourism activity today, rather than what it could offer tomorrow. TOPOSOPHY likes to do things differently. We take a step back and study the whole place (‘topos’ = place in Greek) with a critical but enthusiastic look at where the destination sits compared to its competitors, both near and far. The result for our clients is the choice of a totally integrated range of services including destination strategy and planning, place marketing & branding, market intelligence, trade marketing, policy advice & government support among many others.
WELCOME TO TOPOSOPHY
“TOPOSOPHY” set to become the leading integrated destination marketing agency in Europe.
Aiming to become the leading integrated destination management & marketing agency in Europe, TOPOSOPHY is celebrating its official launch today (30/10/2014) as a new corporate entity offering a full range of specialized, end-to-end solutions in destination management & marketing. With a broad network of experts around the world, the company is well-equipped to work with a diverse clientele base within the travel and tourism industry using an innovative approach, flexible operations and fully committed partners at all levels.
TOPOSOPHY is the totally reengineered and rebranded entity derived from ABOUTOURISM Destination Consultants. Founded in 2010, ABOUTOURISM has already received several distinctions in the consultancy arena. In just over four years, the company’s portfolio has boasted high-level projects and a global network of associates from some of the industry’s leading brands.
TOPOSOPHY’s CEO Manolis Psarros explains: “Having a clear overview of the international industry developments and the changing needs of our clients, we decided it was time to put our flexibility in practice and take a truly bold step. Over the past few months we have worked hard to redesign our entire set of services, and truly enrich our strategically driven solutions to make sure that we offer our DMO, tourism board, hospitality, airline, tour operator and all tourism industry clients, top notch, creative and effective solutions with measurable results”. “We’re now drawing on a much broader base of expertise from across the globe, and that’s going to give a big boost to the services we offer” he added.
TOPOSOPHY’s top digital applications and marketing offering is powered by the ATCOM Group of Companies, the leading web agency in the Greek market, with an extensive project portfolio and unrivaled experience on the creation of portals, e-Shops and web and mobile applications. As a Business Unit of ATCOM, TOPOSOPHY will share resources with the whole group of ATCOM Companies & Business Units (ATCOM/Mindworks/UXLab) in web development and digital marketing services, enabling brands to obtain the visibility they need with a focus on delivering perfect integrated digital experiences.
“‘Toposophy’ means gaining an understanding of the whole place, not just viewed through the narrow view of a destination. That’s why we make the effort to understand the latest industry conditions, engage partners and the local community so that we can reveal a destination’s uniqueness in every form; online and offline. That’s the surest way to plan for a tourism destination’s future” explains Manolis.
TOPOSOPHY’S services focus on offering complete solutions in the following areas: destination strategy & planning destination marketing & branding, market intelligence, trade marketing, policy advice & government support, events & workshops, website & mobile solutions, content & social media marketing, performance marketing & search services, tailor-made to every destination’s distinct needs.
We are strategists and we have an in-house team of more than 150 designers, developers, imagineers, marketers, tourism consultants and magicians along with an elite international dedicated network of hand-picked associates and ensure that everything is possible!
Whether we have worked together in the past or not yet, or you simply want to tell us how much you just love our new website (we certainly do!), get to know us better by scrolling through each section and discover our ready-made reports, white papers, case studies and future plans. Connect with us on Twitter, Facebook or LinkedIn or talk directly to one of our destination management & marketing experts on +30 2102419654 or email (email@example.com).
Sharing Economy & Tourism
More and more destinations around the globe gradually become aware of the influence that the growing start-ups of the sharing economy have upon them. We refer to a fascinating thematic area, which involves so many different issues such as the changing perceptions of new demographic groups about the nature and quality of travel-related services, the reaction of destination authorities according to the cultural and political context of each place, the regulations that could contribute to the establishment of a level playing field for all stakeholders involved, and several others.
In fact, About-tourism has been monitoring this trend for quite some time and today we are ready to announce the conduct of a research concerning the influence of the sharing economy in tourism and hospitality industry in Europe. Our key objectives are to explore what trends and factors have led to the emergence and expansion of this new phenomenon in the field of tourism as well as to emphasize on those opportunities and challenges international destinations are facing in trying to integrate such activities into the economic and social fabric of their areas.
Accordingly, we are excited to invite members of the start-up community in the field of tourism along with tourism industry leaders and destination authority officials to provide their valuable insight through the online questionnaires of About-tourism. This integration of viewpoints will allow our research team to expand the scope of research and made valid statements about current trends and future prospects.
We estimate that it takes approximately 15-20 minutes to complete the survey, so if you feel you can to contribute to this project please click on the link below that corresponds to your group of stakeholders, or cut and paste the respective URL into your browser to access the questionnaire.
1st Questionnaire – Sharing-Economy Start-Ups:
2nd Questionnaire – Tourism Industry Associations & Private Sector Leaders:
3rd Questionnaire – Destination Authorities:
Your input is very important to us and will be kept confidential. Furthermore, we will send you a report of the main findings and conclusions after completion of the project hoping to stimulate a vivid debate about ongoing development in Europe and elsewhere. Stay tuned!
@boutourism is an international, boutique destination development & marketing consultancy offering specific solutions & implementation support in every stage of the destination’s development, management and marketing process. Our elite team of destination experts and tourism professionals combines extensive experience as practitioners, managing operations, with many years of consultancy experience working for DMOs and related organisations around the world.
By recently becoming a business unit of the ATCOM group, @bout tourism can also provide integrated marketing solutions, ranging from Marketing strategy and planning to Web Design and development and a full suite of Digital Marketing services, for Destinations, Tourism Associations, OTAs and Travel/Hospitality Organizations around the world.
We are now looking for an Integrated Marketing Manager to play a key role in the expansion of the company in new markets and new services. The Integrated marketing manager should have experience in destination & travel marketing, be acquainted with digital marketing and social media and have a passion to grow at an international level.
- Assist in strategic planning, implementation and delivery of the corporate marketing plan that complements the overall corporate strategic direction and brand.
- Build new and maintain corporate relationships with key international and national industry players.
- Liaise and network with a range of stakeholders including clients, colleagues, associates and partner organizations;
- Locate/propose potential business deals by contacting potential partners;
- Handle corporate communication with company associates, partners and clients, according to needs.
- Monitor competitor activity.
- Manage the development and implementation of integrated marketing programs for the @boutourism clients.
- Develop e-tourism platforms, including websites, and constructing business databases by liaising with Web Designers, developers and UX experts
- Work with all travel/tourism-related clients to explore and identify ways to integrate offline and online media into business strategies and marketing campaigns.
- Develop online content for clients’ social and digital platforms, including messaging, posts and other editorial content.
- Manage the production of online/offline marketing materials
- Manage marketing budgets & evaluate marketing campaigns;
Events & Workshops
- Run training courses to encourage networking and economic growth in the tourism industry.
- Set up and attend tourism fairs and travel trade workshops.
- Organize and attend events such as conferences, seminars, receptions and exhibitions;
- Bachelor/Masters Degree in Tourism or Marketing
- 3-5 years in Tourism/Destination Marketing ideally working with Digital media
- Ability to multi-task
- Proactive mindset
- Ability to work with international clients on various projects
Please apply via linked @ http://linkd.in/WHac3q
Tourism on the Rise Globally
International tourism continues to grow above expectations, supporting economic growth in both advanced and emerging economies. International tourism generated US $1.4 trillion in 2013 while tourism arrivals at an international level also grew by 5% reaching 1087 million last year. Growth in international tourists last year was equal to growth in income generated by over one billion tourists that traveled the world in 2013, for business, leisure, visiting friends and relatives or other purposes.
Among the 25 largest international tourism earners, receipts saw double-digit growth in ten destinations: the United States (+11 percent), Macao (China, +10 percent), the United Kingdom (+18 percent), Thailand (+28 percent), Hong Kong (China, +21 percent), Turkey (+13 percent), India (+13 percent), Japan (+23 percent), Greece (+15 percent) and Taiwan (+12 percent), according to UNWTO World Tourism Barometer.
The U.S. specifically is on track to exceed the tourism goal of 100 Million Visitors by 2021, as unveiled in the nation’s first-ever National Travel and Tourism Strategy (NTTS) by President Obama in May 2012.
Two years later, the United States is on pace to not only meet its goal, but to exceed it, according to the U.S. Travel Association, which last month published an NTTS progress report showing that in the past two years the nation has achieved a 5.5% annual growth rate in international travel and tourism. Given the president’s target, the United States should have added 6.2 million new international visitors in the last two years; instead, it’s added 7.1 million.
Despite a slow but steady economic recovery, it wasn’t until last year that Americans picked up the pace of their leisure travel, according to a new consumer travel report from PhoCusWright.
It’s “U.S. Consumer Travel Report Sixth Edition” found that consumers have finally moved on from the recession. 65% of consumers took at least one leisure trip in 2013, compared to 63% in 2010, 62% in 2011 and 61% in 2012. In the pre-recession year of 2008, some 70% of consumers took leisure trips.
The two market segments that registered the biggest spikes in travel were families with children under age 18 and travel parties of two adults, couples or otherwise. Family travel grew to 36% last year, up from 31% in 2012, while travel by two adults rose from 53% to 57% last year, according to the same report.
In Europe, the world’s most visited region, international tourist arrivals grew by 6% led by above-average results in Central and Eastern Europe (+7%) and Southern and Mediterranean Europe (+6%). This growth exceeds the initial forecast for 2013 and is double the average growth rate of international tourism in Europe since 2000 (+2.7% a year between 2000 and 2012) according to the UNWTO.
Considering the most important markets for Europe, the European Travel Commission’s ETC latest report ‘European Tourism Portfolio Analysis’, reports 5.4% growth in foreign visitor arrivals to Europe in 2013, a positive result on top of 4 years of sustained growth.
Traditional European markets remain the key source of international travel, but some emerging markets have recently become important as well.
As to the growth forecast for the next 3 years, Europe is expected to reach a 3.8% annual growth in foreign visitor arrivals.
The UK, Germany & USA are expected to retain lead positions, accounting for a total of 27% of European travel demand. Russia is forecast to make the 3rd largest contribution to total growth in the next 3 years, while China is less likely to emerge as a big player as an origin market for Europe.
Sources: ETC, UNWTO Tourism Barometer, PhoCusWright
Global Travel Trends 2013/2014
Despite ambivalent global economic development, international tourism reached a new record high in 2013, according to the recently released IPK International’s World Travel Monitor® report on Global Travel Trends 2013/14 .
IPK’s World Travel Monitor® recorded a +5% increase in outbound travel to 952 million for the 2013 international travel year. The number of foreign overnight accommodations increased by 4% (7.6 billion nights) and, at 989 billion Euro, international travel spending even rose +6%.
This positive development will continue on a world-wide scale in 2014 and now also extend to numerous “advanced economies.”
Europe – still positive
On the outbound travel of the Europeans in 2013, IPK’s study showed that they took more trips in 2013 than in 2012. Altogether the number of European outbound trips rose three percent in 2013 to 432 million, following a two percent growth figure for 2012. While the number of overnight accommodations remained stable at 3.5 billion nights, travel spending for outbound trips rose by two percent to 368 billion euros.
In terms of the types of holidays the Europeans took during the past year, beach holidays were the most frequent, chalking up +4% growth. In contrast, the number of tours only rose by 1% but, conversely, stronger growth (+5%) was noted for city trips and winter holidays.
According to IPK, in regards to Europe’s most important source markets in 2013, Russia again dominated the European growth figures with an increase of 13 percent.
The German market
The Germans took 335 million domestic and outbound trips in 2013 (+2 percent), and at 1.7 billion, the number of overnight stays also came in twi percent higher.
According to IPK, there was still no change with respect to the top holiday destinations of the Germans: Austria continued to hold first place in 2013 (17 percent market share), followed by Spain(16 percent) and Italy (12 percent). Austria and Spain were able to hold onto their market shares with single-digit growth rates while Italy’s negative growth resulted in the country losing one percent market share. Other popular German outbound holiday destinations last year were Turkey (eight percent), the Netherlands (six percent), France (six percent) and Greece (three percent).
Outlook for 2014
Although the global economy seems to be heading toward recession, IPK anticipates a five percent worldwide growth in tourism for 2014.
Social media will continue to gain more and more relevance, including for the tourism sector. Nearly every second European outbound traveler is part of the social media community and 16% of them already use social media as a source of information for planning and realizing their trips.
View the full report here
Top 5 AbouTourism Articles for 2013!
As we wrap up 2013, it is time to take a look at some of your favorite and most read articles from this past year.
During this past year, abouTourism offered insights on destination marketing and the latest developments, highlighted the latest trends to shape the industry and shared best practice cases showcasing successful destination development, management and marketing strategies.
It’s been an amazing year and we want to thank each and everyone for your trust and support as we are getting ready for an even more exciting 2014!
These are the Top 5 abouTourism blog posts that we loved most in 2013!
1. Destination Marketing: Social Media Campaigns that Work
Slovenia, through the Slovenian Tourist Board (STB) has a well developed digital presence promoting the country as a tourism destination. In order to raise awareness of Slovenia as a high class and attractive winter destination, STB launched an innovative winter campaign with the support of abouTourism and Mindworks, and we are excited with the results!
A simple and to the point campaign with easily spreadable content, creating word of mouth, while involving multiple user segments, including locals, professionals, potential travelers and social media influencers.
2. A New Kid on the Block: Black Sea Region & Cruise Tourism
What does it take for emerging sea cruise destinations to establish themselves in a highly competitive market?
A response provided by abouTourism consultants, as part of a report prepared for the ‘United Nations Development Programme – Black Sea Trade and Investment Programme’ (UNDP BSTIP), is that individual destinations, physically coupled in a large geographical zone, are not going to benefit from cruise passengers visiting these localities unless they set common targets and coordinate their efforts.
3. Integrated, Multichannel Tourism Marketing: Gadgets, Books, Films & more
When content is king and there are multiple channels to distribute various types of content, how can we make sure that the right message appears at the right people at the right time?
Today that travelers are using a combination of offline/online sources and platforms throughout the travel buying cycle, it is crucial to develop integrated, multichannel marketing campaigns as a result of proper strategic planning. Right content at the right time means appropriate messaging per channel, smartly using available tools which will all come together to complement the overall destination brand.
DMOs are called to utilize any given opportunity to pull their audience deeper into the destination’s brand, by being active content distributors, combining traditional promotional tools and marketing activities in smart ways which place excellent content where their target market is.
4. Destination Marketing: Use Your Babies, Bananas & more
As a fact, major events can have a major impact on the visitor economy of their host destinations, but it is up to the destination tourism authorities to set how much. It is also up to the destination to think outside the box and try to capitalize on every single – or set of- strength and assets it has to support its tourism marketing efforts. In a few words….Go bananas…
When the royal baby was born, we took a look at how UK tourism agencies approached this special event to capitalize on the world wide interest, marketing the royal birth and the whole destination at the same time.
5. Effective B2B Destination Marketing-Travel Trade Workshops
A case study of destination-focused travel trade Workshops organization for the City of Athens.
Within the framework of the City of Athens’ development and tourism promotion action plan aiming to highlight Athens in the international tourism market, the Athens Development & Destination Management Agency (ADDMA) reached a cooperation agreement of strategic importance with the European Tour Operators Association (ETOA). The agreement sees to the establishment of a series of annual B2B workshops under the name “Travel Trade Athens”.
The agreement signed with ETOA, has a dual purpose for the tourism product of Metropolitan Athens and the destination’s efforts to strengthen the international image of Athens in the global tourism community. Firstly, this is the first intervention of such scale and importance after many years and with partner one of the most dynamic institutions in the European market, who trusts the city and its formal structures, such as the ADDMA. Secondly, it makes evident that Athens, as a city break and business destination, continues to be a very interesting and attractive option with promising growth prospects.
Stay tuned for more!
International Tourism & Travel Trends
The WTM Global Trends Report 2013 was just launched during London’s WTM 2013, in association with Euromonitor International and highlights the emerging trends from around the world.
A global overview presents the following key findings:
- The global economy is expected to record 3.1% growth in 2013, a stable performance compared to 2012.
- The IMF predicts global GDP to grow by 3.8% in 2014, thanks to positive growth in the Eurozone, the economy picking up in the US and a further increase in emerging markets.
- The long-term economic potential of the BRICs and other emerging markets remains solid and is expected to drive positive performance of the global economy over 2015-2017.
- Global tourist arrivals and inbound spending are predicted to continue to be vital over the 2012-2017 period, boosted by increasing demand from emerging markets.
- Advanced markets are recovering after the difficulties experienced since the crisis with tourism flows and spending from the US, Japan and Europe returning to growth.
- Online travel agencies are growing in importance, with Expedia and Priceline dominating this space. Players from emerging markets are also gaining ground, like the Chinese online travel agency Ctrip.
- Mobile travel bookings are becoming significant globally, reaching double-digit shares of online sales for some key players in the online travel agency and hotel categories in 2012.
The Global Trends Report 2013 reveals how travel players are differentiating and innovating their products and services, all while embracing social media.
Non-traditional demographic groups are emerging with PANKs ‘Professional Aunt, No Kids,’ a new target market in the US, while child friendly and multi-generational safaris in Africa are growing more popular.
We see that business models are adapting to suit customers’ needs, where low-cost carriers are going upmarket in the Middle East and hotels offer microstays. Peer-to-peer continues to make inroads despite legislative hurdles. The lure of the East grows apace with cruise operators diving into the Chinese market.
Social media channels are important to improving the customer experience, as seen with the emergence of the mobile concierge, while in India, social channels are giving online travel companies’ sales a welcome boost.
Here are the main identified trends per region:
Americas: PANKs – A New Demographic
The travel industry is starting to cater to the ‘Professional Aunt, No Kids’ demographic.
UK: Travel Happiness Index
Routehappy.com provides a unique measurement of customer satisfaction via its happiness scores for airlines.
Europe: Next Generation Peer-to-Peer Travel
Peer-to-peer travel services are recording strong growth in Europe, offering authentic experiences at affordable prices.
Middle East: Low-Cost Goes Upmarket
Middle Eastern consumers have a penchant for luxury, which has led LCCs to introduce business class-style services.
Africa: The Big Five with Your Little One
Child-focused safaris in Africa are becoming more popular, driven by demand for multi-generational holidays.
Asia: Fight for Cruise Control in China
China is set to become a key market for cruise companies as this new type of holiday rises in popularity.
India: The Travel Social Shake-Up
Indian online travel players are using social media more effectively to target young urban consumers.
Global Village: Vacancy on Demand – Chasing the 24-hour Traveller
Microstays have emerged as an attractive means of boosting hotel revenues, by targeting business travellers on the move.
Travel Technology: Mobile Concierge
Travel companies are increasingly using mobile channels to satisfy customers’ needs before, during and after the trip.
You can find the Full WTM Global Trends 2013 report here
and check out TrendSpotting 2013 for all the latest Tourism & Travel Reports
International Tourism on the Rise Boosted by Europe
Demand for international tourism remained strong throughout the first eight months of 2013, according to the latest UNWTO World Tourism Barometer. Between January and August, the number of international tourists worldwide grew by 5%, driven by strong results in Europe, Asia and the Pacific and the Middle East. UNWTO’s Panel of Experts confirms this positive trend. Its evaluation of the May-August period shows a significant improvement in confidence, while prospects for the last four months of 2013 remain upbeat.
In the first eight months of the year, international tourist arrivals grew by 5% to reach a record 747 million worldwide, some 38 million more than in the same period of 2012.
After a solid start of the year, demand for international tourism maintained strength throughout the Northern Hemisphere peak season. The months of June to August have shown sound results – in absolute numbers, international arrivals topped 125 million in both July and August, while in June the 100 million arrivals mark was exceeded for the first time.
“While global economic growth is in low gear, international tourism continues to produce above average results in most world regions, offering vital opportunities for employment and local economies,” said UNWTO Secretary-General, Taleb Rifai at the Opening of the European Tourism Forum in Vilnius. “This is particularly important for Europe, where unemployment is a major concern in many destinations and where the tourism sector has been a source of job growth in the last decade. Furthermore, through its value chain, tourism creates businesses and jobs in many other sectors and produces significant export revenues which contribute favourably to the balance of payments in many countries,” he added.
International tourist numbers grow in all regions
Europe (+5%) benefited the most from the growth of tourism in the first eight months of 2013, with an estimated 20 million more arrivals in the region. Given that Europe is the world’s largest tourism region with many mature destinations, a 5% growth rate is very positive. Central and Eastern Europe (+7%) and Southern and Mediterranean Europe (+6%) performed particularly well.
Asia and the Pacific (+6%) continued to show robust growth bolstered by South-East Asia (+12%) adding some ten million arrivals.
The Americas (+3%), which gained four million additional arrivals in the first eight months of the year, reported comparatively weaker results, with North America (+4%) in the lead.
Africa (+5%) where growth was by led by the recovery of North Africa (+6%), received two million extra arrivals, while in the Middle East arrivals rebounded by 7% after two years of decline.
UNWTO Panel of Experts confidence up
World tourism performed better than expected in the period May to August 2013 according to the confidence survey conducted among UNWTO´s Panel of Experts this September. The survey revealed a sharp increase in confidence among destinations and businesses, in particular among experts from advanced economies in line with the better than expected performance in world tourism. For the last four months of the year the Panel continues to be rather optimistic.
Growth in tourism receipts trails arrivals
With very few exceptions, the positive results in arrivals are also reflected in the international tourism receipts reported for the first six to eight months of the year. Among the 25 largest international tourism earners, receipts grew by double-digits in Thailand (+27%), Hong Kong (China) (+25%), Turkey (+22%), Japan (+19%), the United Kingdom (+18%), Greece (+15%), India (+14%), Malaysia (+12%) and the United States (+11%).
Emerging economies continue to drive international tourism spending
Emerging economies continue to lead international tourism expenditure, with all BRIC countries except India, reporting double-digit growth. China posted an extraordinary 31% increase in spending, while the Russian Federation (+28%) and Brazil (+15%) likewise saw a sound increase during the period.
Tourism spending was slower in the advanced economy source markets of Canada (+4%), the United Kingdom (+2%), France (+2%), the United States (+1%) and Germany (0%), while Japan, Australia and Italy saw declines in expenditure.