How to improve promotion of small touristic businesses online?

The answer is based on the experience of collaboration of Kazakhstan association of tourism with Center Smart Tourism on training owners and managers of small touristic businesses on the subject of systematic internet marketing for tourism.

According to our research, which coincides with results of variety of researches around the world, one of the biggest problems of small touristic businesses is that owners and managers demonstrate lack of knowledge and misunderstanding of the basic fundamental concepts of internet marketing. Another major problem is not being consistent or not having a systematic approach to online promotion strategy.

As a result, we observe nervous attempts of placements and posting in different social networks without much effectiveness or success. At the same time the quality of the websites of such businesses remains on the low level. The consequence of this is overspending budget and effort on social networks, insufficiently small flow of customers and inefficient performance of business as a whole.

In collaboration with our partner, Kazakhstan Touristic Association, Center Smart Tourism has conducted research on digital skills and fundamental knowledge of owners, managers and directors of small touristic businesses. Results of the research have clearly confirmed the low level of knowledge and skills on online marketing and promotion. More details on the results of conducted research can be found here.

For this reason, Kazakhstan Touristic Association and Center Smart Tourism have developed and integrated systematic program on improving digital marketing and training online promotion skills for managers working in touristic businesses in Kazakhstan. This will surely have positive impact on the progress of smart tourism.

In order to achieve effectiveness and clarity, separate Department of Digitalization and Smart Tourism has been created. This department plays the role of expertise and educational facility. Center Smart Tourism has been chosen as the main operator of this department. More details here

Another feature that has been introduced is the free WhatsApp chat, where related news and features of online marketing get posted every week. It is also used to publish main properties and opportunities of special services for online promotion, such as Google Analytics, Google Ads, Meta, Tripadvisor, etc. This chat is open access for any touristic business after quick and simple registration.

The department also publishes and updates open access lessons on the basics of internet marketing in the context of the area of tourism. These lessons are open access on the Center Smart Tourism portal.

Further on, Department of Digitalization and Smart Tourism organizes guest lectures on the topics related to online marketing in the colleges and universities that study tourism and hospitality. This is great opportunity to give fundamental knowledge and skills to future specialists and lecturers of in the area of tourism. One of the successful examples of this program was lecture given in Turan university.

As mentioned before, department has also organized courses and trainings on digital marketing for owners of touristic business. As online courses are much less effective, the courses are organized in offline format, where owners of the businesses come to lectures and learn fundamental skills one by one. Here’s an example

Another activity that is being done is different research studies of the current state of internet marketing in tourism in Kazakhstan. For this purpose websites and social networks of many touristic organizations has been studied. Based on the results of these research studies, the courses and training programs are being constantly updated. Interested reader could have a look at one of our latest studies of the problems of internet marketing among travel businesses.

Finally, Center Smart Tourism writes and distributes study books on the basics of internet marketing, specified for touristic and hospitality businesses.

All if these activities bring systematic approach and order in online promotion of tourism in Kazakhstan. In the future this could improve placement and visibility of touristic businesses on the internet, both inside and outside the country.

We truly hope that our experience can be implemented by any destination and would bring benefits to associations of tourism and separate touristic businesses as well. In addition, we are always ready to share any details of our activities and accept any new ideas and approaches.

You can contact us in any convenient way here.