We know that the impacts of COVID-19 are being felt across British Columbia, and will continue to be felt by the tourism industry long into the future.

As tourism businesses plan their own unique path forward, they will need support on the road to recovery, to adapt and overcome a pandemic that has touched so many people around the world.

We all want a better, brighter future for tourism in BC. Destination BC believes that through meaningful collaboration and support, together we can re-ignite BC’s tourism industry, propel tourism businesses forward, accelerate growth amongst destinations, and plan for a successful future in our province.

As such, Destination British Columbia has launched six-part series of webinars to help businesses navigate the new normal. Each webinar will take tourism businesses through 'checkpoints' to collectively consider and work on as we move towards recovery in the travel and tourism sector.

Take a look at the series below.

Business After Re-opening: A Look at the Post-closure Traveller

Speaker: Conner Galway, Junction Consulting 
Date: May 12    
Time: 2:00 pm PST (60 minutes)

REGISTER HERE

Who will travel? What do we know about them? What do they want in a travel experience now? In this session we will look at the post-closure traveller by utilizing historical data, today’s best information, and comparatives from other markets that are already in recovery to gain insight into the likely traveller profile and behaviour. 
 
Key topics include: Predicted shifts in traveller demographics, traveller motivators and concerns, the phases of travel recovery, and more. 
 
Please join Destination BC for this webinar on May 12 at 2:00 pm PST and share this information with your networks. The more informed and prepared we are collectively, the better we can effectively welcome travellers back to all corners of our province. 

Essential Strategies to Innovate your Visitor Experience and Offerings

Date: May 14     
Time: 2:00 pm (90 minutes)
Speaker: Joe Veneto, Veneto Collaboratory

REGISTER HERE

To attract today’s traveller to BC, we must re-imagine the customer experience. Hyper-local visitors will want new, engaging and immersive ways to interact with your attraction or activity, to create memorable connections to the places that lie close to their home and hearts. US and overseas travellers will want an experience that also connects them to British Columbia and shows how we as an industry have expanded and extended our destination offerings to appeal to today’s new visitor.    
 
Key topics include: 

  • Understanding customer attitudes, forces, and buying decisions.
  • Engineering new engaging and immersive mini experiences that connect to your organization’s brand essence.
  • How to discover the best product types to attract today’s new visitors.
  • How to tap into the Experience Formula to build experience impact.
  • Examples of successful experience case studies.
  • How to create an action plan to get your experiences to market.

Planning for Doors Open

Speaker: Eva Gutsche, Stem Consulting
Date: May 19    
Time: 2:00 pm PST (60 minutes)

REGISTER HERE

What considerations need be addressed now to ensure that your business is ready once restrictions begin to lift? Or, perhaps you have already opened your tourism doors – congratulations(!) – this webinar is also useful in helping during the early stages of opening. 

The webinar will look at how government plans, and various corporate approaches, can help inform strategies to re-ignite our industry. These strategies will be complemented by the innovation that needs to happen to restore BC’s global competitive advantage. Eva Gutsche or Stem Consulting will work through topics including: customer interaction from the initial booking phase, changes to existing bookings, and cancellation approaches, and the arrival experience and engagement while at your place of business. 

Key topics include: 

  • What’s happening globally and how are countries easing back into business.
  • Trends and patterns from previous crisis situations such as 9/11 and SARS.
  • How various sectors in the tourism industry are dealing with cancellations, refunds, and credit and flexibility in attracting new booking.
  • Restrictions that may be in place for re-opening your business in BC and considerations for this now.
  • Preparing your team for safe service delivery – what could customer interaction and service delivery look like
  • Open levels: community and business – getting the balance right

Managing Expectations and Reputation through Effective Communication

Speaker: Daniel Craig, Reknown
Date: May 21    
Time: 2:00 pm (60 minutes)

REGISTER HERE 

Today, effective communication is more critical than ever to reassuring travellers and giving them the confidence to book.  British Columbia’s tourism industry must be seen to understand and address consumer concerns, initially though communication with our visitors. This is one of the first steps in restoring our industry’s social license.

To effectively communicate to today’s traveller, we will first explore how the needs and expectations of travellers have changed following COVID-19, before looking at:

  • Best practices in communications.
  • Communicating policies, promotions, and product changes. 
  • How to align your messaging with Destination BC, community DMOs, and sector organizations.
  • Managing inquiries, comments, and complaints.
     

Using Social Media to Support Re-Opening

Speaker: Conner Galway, Junction Consulting
Date: May 26     
Time: 2:00 pm PST (60 minutes)

REGISTER HERE

The webinar will examine how social has been and will continue to be, the most effective way to educate, inspire, and communicate with our audience of guests. Now, however, is a special time with special considerations. Our communities are more important than ever, but how can we maintain a safe, responsible message while easing back to business?

In this session, we’ll look at techniques and tactics being used in currently-recovering markets, and draw on other crises for lessons. Attendees will leave not with a clearly defined social media plan, but with ideas, inspiration, and a set of key things to avoid when using social media during a recovery.

Key topics include: 

  • Curating and collecting existing assets to prepare for the recovery
  • Creating a phased-in content plan
  • Lessons from currently recovering markets
  • What to avoid on social media during a recovery

Building a Digital Marketing Strategy for the Future 

Date: May 28     
Time: 2:00 pm PST (60 minutes)
Speaker: Conner Galway, Junction Consulting

REGISTER HERE

Together we need to plan for the future. So while the timeline is uncertain, we can gain the competitive advantage by positioning ourselves for recovery, in turn leading to long-term resilience. With no shortage of tactics and tools available, the session will dive straight into the goals and objectives of building a winning digital marketing strategy for your tourism business, and then move on to the resources and efforts needed to accomplish them.

The four-pronged approach will begin with setting objectives for the recovery, followed by the steps that go into developing a digital marketing plan, content creation and benefits of collaborations, and finally, how to allocate time and resources to bringing your strategy to life. 

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