If companies want to keep up with new consumer demands, they need to innovate, adapt and include technology in their business model.
For many organizations, the pandemic provided an opportunity to accelerate their digital transformation and modernize their customer experience to remain competitive in a changing market.
Evolving consumer needs are gradually reshaping the role of tourism businesses and the experiences they offer. And the change is good for everyone involved! Technology is helping businesses adjust to new consumer demands and provide:
- Secure service;
- Information and services accessible anywhere, at any time;
- A personalized offer.
Digital transformation has become essential for tourism businesses that want to grow and future-proof their operations.
Aligning your transformation with your strategic priorities
Before embarking on a digital transformation journey, you need to take stock of your current situation and confirm your company’s mission so that you can develop a clear vision of what you want to achieve. Specifically, this involves:
- Performing a detailed review of market trends and the competition;
- Gaining an in-depth appreciation of the issues your company faces;
- Understanding your current processes and their limitations;
- Reviewing your customer experience;
- Analyzing your technologies;
- Ensuring your human resources are managed appropriately;
- Aligning your digital transformation with your business strategies.
Going through these steps will give you a stronger sense of where you stand, allow you to make more informed decisions and ensure your digital transformation is aligned with your strategic priorities. In turn, these priorities will help you determine which business needs are essential and could benefit from new technologies or data valorization tools.
New avenues for improving the customer experience
Today’s tools and technologies can make all the difference in helping businesses provide tourists with a superior experience that’s both authentic and personalized. This is true across the board, from activities to accommodations, public transportation and customer service. Naturally, maintaining a good customer experience involves striking a balance between convenient technologies and support from live personnel.
For example, a growing number of hotels are offering guests a digital check-in service and the chance to personalize their rooms without having to go through the front desk.
Certain hotels and other innovative businesses, such as restaurants, travel agencies, sports complexes and entertainment venues, have partnered together to offer customers a seamless and personalized experience.
Case study: Le P’tit Train du Nord
Le P’tit Train du Nord in the Laurentides, has successfully made use of digital technology by including a mapping system in its website to enhance the user experience. The map provides cyclists with a variety of helpful information, including:
- Location of kilometre markers;
- Bike repair stations;
- Restaurants, cafés and microbreweries;
- Public washrooms;
- Road types (paved or rock dust);
- Accommodations and camping sites;
- Nearby activities and businesses.
Meanwhile, some cities are creating mobile apps that use artificial intelligence to provide tourists with personalized recommendations. Based on a number of factors, the app pushes relevant content that can further stimulate the local economy.
Véloroute: an app that strengthens partnerships
Véloroute des Bleuets has added interactive maps to the Ondago app, which displays local partner organizations within 5 km of the trail. Since the suggestions are personalized based on the cyclist’s interests, users enjoy a better experience and local partners get seen by the right consumer segments.
“We’re able to track how many users are referred by the app to a specific establishment, so that we can keep our partners informed and add value to our offer. The more customers the app brings in, the more partners want to join. And the more partners we have on board, the more useful the app is for users. It’s a positive loop,” said David Lecointre, general manager of Véloroute des Bleuets.
Useful information to drive continuous improvement
Digital transformation also lets companies extract insights from data to support decision-making. The goal is to improve the offer to suit consumer demands and needs.
Companies that succeed in creating an excellent digital experience will fare best in the post pandemic period because they’ll build loyalty among their existing customer base and meet the needs of prospective customers.
Financial assistance for digital transformation projects
Did you know? Various financial assistance programs are available to help companies implement digital transformation plans that suit their needs and industry.
Contact your regional tourism association to inquire about out the deadline to apply for financial aid under the Regional Tourism Partnership Agreement (RTPA). There are also various possibilities for support specific to digital transformation, as well as the additional support for tourism businesses. You may also be eligible for programs to support post-pandemic recovery.
The tourism, leisure and culture industry is changing quickly, as consumers are increasingly in control and seeking an improved customer experience.
For businesses, the pandemic simply accelerated the need to rethink their strategic plans and adjust their business models. Some companies were quick to respond and managed to weather the pandemic better than others. In many cases, they did so by prioritizing digital transformation. The shift is good for consumers, but it promises to be beneficial for businesses, too.
Get assistance from a strategic planning and digital transformation expert. A knowledgeable person will be able to guide you through the entire process.
28 Jun 2021 | Written by :