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TAT looks to sharpen its Thainess campaign.

A BROAD-BASED destination image research study conducted across 14 countries by the Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT) has provided clear pointers on ways to sharpen the imagery and message of the country's upcoming 'Thainess' tourism campaigns. Approved at the TAT's annual Action Plan meeting in July 2012, the 'Thainess' campaigns will highlight unique selling propositions such as Thai boxing, Thai cuisine, Thai health & wellness, Thai culture and heritage and many other such characteristics of the country's identity. The research study was designed to identify the 'trigger points' that will convince the potential visitors to move from looking to booking. The countries included Malaysia, Japan, Taiwan, Hong Kong, US, UAE, Australia, China, South Korea, India, Russia, Germany, Sweden, and Italy. A total sample of 3,000 was surveyed including both those who were first time or repeat visitors. TAT Governor Suraphon Svetasreni said, "The most important factor in the advertising message always has been the quality of the imagery. But with the many changes taking place these days, both the content and means of delivery of those images had to be re-examined within the context of our 'Thainess' campaign strategies." He noted that some target groups felt attracted by a story-telling strategy. Others favoured a more static approach or responded to powerful images delivered via mobile devices. In all instances, the response differed depending on such factors as gender, age, location and the number of times the potential customers had visited Thailand.

The authority has also divided its action plan into five implementation categories under the acronym, Disco Plan. These include: Digital marketing, Image-building, Sustainable Development, Crystallization/Crisis Management, and Organisation Management. Svetasreni believes that these five categories clearly identify how the TAT will work with all its partners and stakeholders, both within Thailand and abroad, as well as upgrade the quality of its internal personnel skills to deliver on the tourism targets. He said, "The strategic direction for TAT action in 2013 has been formulated entirely with the cooperation of all parties involved in the tourism industry, and its implementation will also need the same level of cooperation. "We began with brainstorming sessions in the "Marketing Think Tank 2013" meetings in March 2012 and worked extensively with the private sector through focus groups. All our TAT offices abroad also consulted our foreign partners. It can be said that this year, everybody is involved in determining the marketing direction of Thailand's tourism industry." Suraphon added that these days, the best-laid plans can be quickly disrupted by unexpected developments, which means that the industry has to be ready to change all the time. "The changing nature of the tourism industry makes it impossible for any marketing agency to operate in isolation. We are fortunate to have a very marketable product and supportive partners, both in the public and private sectors, in Thailand and abroad. With their help and advice, I am sure we will be able to pull off a successful 2012 and 2013," he concluded. Copyright 2008

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Publication:Travel & Tourism News
Geographic Code:9THAI
Date:Sep 1, 2012
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