12 Feb The reactivation of tourism needs strong brands
Whiplash Team, 12th February 2021
The reactivation of tourism needs strong brands
Tourism companies must prepare for the recovery of the industry. Strengthening the brand is essential to generate user’s trust, who yearn to relax and live new experiences after the long months of lockdown and social distance that the pandemic has imposed.
The tourism industry, on a global scale, has been one of the most affected by the effects of the pandemic that has ravaged the world for almost a year. In Spain, tourism represented 12.4% of GDP and generated 2.72 million jobs in 2019, according to data from the National Institute of Statistics (INE). By September 2020 it had already experienced a drop of more than 72% compared to the previous year’s figures.
According to a study carried out by the consulting firm Accenture, the main reason for such a drastic fall is the loss of confidence of users; 58% lack trust when travelling by plane, 47% when staying in a hotel and 42% when renting a car. As additional data, the fall in air traffic in Europe in the last 11 months has been 80%.
However, according to a list drawn up by the air industry observatory, Spain is among the top ten countries best prepared for a recovery in tourism. The worst part of the story is that it does so only in tenth place. The reason is that when preparing the list, factors such as the weight of tourism in the country’s economy, the evolution of the economy and the mortality rate associated with Covid, were considered.
In any case, the industry must prepare for recovery. Tourism is an element of social depressurisation, such as the restaurant businesses, entertainment and all the spaces that favour social and cultural interaction.
Confinement, forced or voluntary for fear of infection, has only increased people’s desire to relax, travel and experience new things. But they need to trust the companies offering them services: from airlines, ferries or car rentals, to hotels, catering services or the leisure and entertainment sector.
A strong brand inspires trust and allows a company to continue and connect with consumers even in adverse situations or in uncertain or difficult times. Such is the experience of Editorial Bruguera, which disappeared in the 80s to later reappear even stronger thanks to Penguin Random House, and to the memory of consumers who associated it to the comic books of their childhood. This is an example of the possibilities that a solid and strong brand that builds lasting ties with its users.
Regarding the recovery of the tourism industry, it is essential to have admired brands, which add value to their customers by solving problems easily, generating trust and respect. Organizations that connect their raison d’être as a company – their purpose – with the aspirations and values of their users through an inspiring and attractive story, will gain their respect and loyalty, and so therefore will be prepared when the pandemic allows us to travel freely again.