What NZ Can Learn From Switzerland to Encourage More Chinese Tourists

With the booming Chinese economy and Chinese tourism on the rise, tourist industries across the world are scrambling to find innovative ways to appeal to this significant market.

TrekkSoft recently interviewed Simon Bosshart, the Director of Global Accounts and the Director for Asia Pacific for Switzerland Tourism, and revealed important lessons to be learned from Switzerland’s tourist industry. According to Bosshart, “The Chinese are what we call highlight customers.” Meaning, “they prefer going to well-known cities and visiting famous attractions; and aren't as keen to discover hidden gems like the Europeans.” Regardless of that, Bosshart says “the Chinese are extremely curious and are willing to learn about a new destination” and that they are “also a lot less active in terms of outdoor sports.

Given this information, many would assume Swiss cities would be an unlikely destination for Chinese tourists, considering it’s a small and scenic country buried in the Alps. However, due to a few changes in the tourism industry over the last 10 years and their plans to improve in the coming years, Switzerland has made significant progress in appealing to Chinese tourists and is expected to continue to do so.

Bosshart divulged that the first and most important change they made was to get individual businesses online since the “growing trend towards online business and online booking facilities” has proved to be favourable for Swiss tourist companies. With most businesses online now, it is easier for people from across the world to find and book a service. To raise their profile even more, businesses can promote themselves on Chinese social media platforms like Weibo, QZone and Tencent QQ. Research has shown that this can be a tourist company’s most valuable tool since China has the largest population in the world that uses social media – about 600 million (as of 2015). Advertising your website on platforms such as these, especially when your website is translated into Mandarin, can be extremely beneficial to attracting the Chinese tourist.

Another strategy Bosshart is encouraging Switzerland to take, is to work together as a destination, to drive larger visitor numbers. Bosshart recommends doing this by bundling services together and distributing it on one specific channel. For example, when most travellers make their first attempt at skiing, they could first go to a tourism office to learn about it. But then there’s the questions of where find to the right equipment, the best prices, what type of ski pass to get and how to find the right ski instructor. By bundling these services together and making a variety of package deals, the process is simplified and tourists will be more likely to book a skiing trip.

Dunedin-Otago-Peninsula
Monarch Wildlife boat seen here with the lighthouse at Royal Albatross Colony.

To boost business popularity amongst Chinese tourists, it is also advised that you market yourself to appear as a well-known company since “Chinese customers also value big brand names and prestige.” Offering luxury add-ons to a package trip might be worth considering.

To tailor a package deal to the Chinese market, the tourist industry might want to combine activities with premium features or add-ons. Dunedin’s Otago Peninsula is a great example of where tourist operators could work together to provide a high-end tourist experience catered specially to the Chinese market. For example, a helicopter flight to start the journey landing on the Otago Peninsula, exclusive tours of the Royal Albatross Colony, Historic Fort Taiaroa and a private viewing of the Little Blue Penguins. Rather than a bus, a fleet of luxury classic cars could transport the visitors to ideal viewing spots before being taken to New Zealand’s only castle for an exclusive tourism experience. To complete the trip, a 3 course dining experience at Glenfalloch Gardens & Restaurant, showcasing fresh, local produce.

Another tip from Bosshart is rather than changing your business to accommodate the majority of Chinese tourists, it is more useful to focus on specific markets since the Chinese market is so large. For instance, although Chinese tourists are known to travel in large groups, Swiss companies have stayed true to their ways and continued to specialise in small group activities. As a result, they are more likely to secure a booking with those 30-35% of Chinese travellers who prefer free, independent travel.

Finding a way to be unique from other tourist companies and regions is a proven marketing strategy. From a tourist’s perspective, subtle differences in products and services can often seem too similar to differentiate, which can leave them confused about which to choose. This is why it is essential for businesses to highlight their specialties. Ask yourself, “What does my activity or destination have that is different from others?” If you can’t easily answer this question, you may want to rethink your marketing strategy.

Bosshart says Switzerland’s tourism industry, specifically among the Chinese Market, has grown and is enroute to more successful seasons.

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Understanding Facebook’s Newsfeed

Our Director, Philippa Crick, did a presentation to the tourism group Dunedin Host at the end of May, on how tourism businesses can use social media better for improved Return of Investment.
Watch this short clip from the presentation, that explains more about how the Newsfeed works in Facebook.

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Video Works

Are you unsure if video will help your business? You need to take a look at these revealing statistics.
By 2017, video will account for 69% of all consumer internet traffic, according to Cisco. Video-on-demand traffic alone will have almost trebled.

Video Works on Facebook

A 2014 study of more than 72,000 Facebook pages revealed that video generates the most engagement among various formats, with photos coming in second.
Between 2013 and 2014, the number of Facebook video plays grew an enormous 785%, with engagements also growing 25% during the same period. In 2015, Facebook video views were topping three billion-a-day.

Video Works with Professionals

Research shows how the use of videos gets results not only for consumers but also business executives. (Forrester)

  • of Senior Executives watch more video now than they did a year ago
  • of Executives would rather watch a video than read an article
  • of Executives watch work-related videos every week
  • of Executives have visited a vendor's site after watching a video

Videos Work with Email Marketing

Using the word ‘video’ in an email subject line

  • Video-Gets-Results
  • 1 of the TOP 31 of the TOP 3 most effective social media marketing tactics, according to B2B and B2C marketers
  • Marketing professionals worldwide say video gets the best Return On Investment (ROI)
  • of mobile video viewers share videos with others. Source
  • of viewers will watch a video until the end that is less than 1 min long.

Video is the future of content marketing. If a picture paints 1,000 words then 1 minute of video is worth 1.8 million, so say Forrester's researchers. If you aren't taking advantage of this marketing tool, you should start planning now on how to integrate it into your marketing strategy.

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What is Content Marketing?

Content Marketing is the creation of unique content such as blog posts and videos relating to your products and services. This content should be engaging to draw in your target demographic, directing traffic to your website and customers to your business. Content Marketing is a great way to stand out from your competitors and connect with your customers in a creative and meaningful way.

Content Marketing Explained in Video

Watch our short video which easily explains content marketing.

 

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Logo and Brand Difference

Difference between a Logo and a Brand: Does it Really Matter?

A brand is the most important marketing tool used by an organisation to differentiate itself from competitors.

There are tangible and intangible parts of your brand. The logo is the tangible part - a recognisable design element, often including a name, symbol and specified colours. The brand encompasses the logo, positioning, messaging and communications, personality, voice, marketing and the experience any individual has with the business, product or service online, offline or in person.

It’s the Perception created inside the mind of staff, stake-holders and customers based on what they see, hear, feel and experience about your company. These emotions are based on messages you send out at all levels, including, but not exclusively, your logo. For example, how does your perception change when we compare these logos:

BMW    the-warehouse


The Warehouse instantly conjures up lots of bargins or cheap goods. On the other hand, BMW you will probably think of quality, prestigious vehicles. Beyond that though, seeing a logo triggers how you feel about a company and what they provide.

A successful brand has a higher value to a consumer than its competition and can often command a premium price for its products or services.

A strong brand creates a sense of security among consumers.
They’re more comfortable with an existing, established brand, are more likely to trust it, buy it, and tell their friends about it.  It brand extensions within the same category a leg up on the competition because the awareness marketing of the brand is already done.

A strong brand boosts new product awareness and credibility.
If your brand launches into a new market where it’s a new player, you can leverage the power of your brand in other markets where consumers may already be familiar with its reputation.

A strong brand can help the human resources department attract top talent.
Many prospective employees can be tempted by the prospect of working for a company that owns well-known brands.   Much of it is a prestige move, because people like to be associated with the market leader or a reputable organisation.

Ideally your customers should associate your brand with some aspects of your core values or philosophy. If you think of Greenpeace or Amnesty International, fighting for the environment or people should be front-of-mind.

So yes, a brand and a logo are different and the differences matter. Think of it this way. A logo all by itself is just a graphic element with a name. A brand is the communications strategy that helps you communicate your passion and expertise.

Case Study: Branding Works
Sometimes businesses need to breathe new life into their products/services and decide to rebrand and relaunch. Take NTL for example. Their reputation was one of poor customer service and an unreliable product. In 2006 NTL took over Virgin Media and gaining rights to the Virgin brand was a major factor in the near 20% premium the company paid above the mobile firm's stock market valuation.

Rebranded with the established and trusted Virgin insignia and business took off. Same product, same staff, same office, same service! In addition, the flow on effect of better business lead to an increase in staff morale and motivation – which in turn lead to more business success!

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Googles Big Mobile Update

Is your Business Ready for Google’s Big Mobile Update?

Google is constantly rolling out new algorithms that affect website rankings and they have now included ‘mobile-friendliness’ as a ranking factor in response to the growth of searches performed on mobile/tablet devices.

What does this mean for your Website?

If your website is not readable on smartphones and other mobile devices it risks being penalised or down-ranked.

From 21 April 2015, responsive websites will benefit from the mobile-friendly algorithm update after Google has crawled their site and noted the change.

If you want to get your website smartphone optimised and multiple-device friendly, then you may have to have your website rebuilt. However, you should consider this as a critical investment in your website and not as a cost. Traffic to websites from smartphones and tablet computers is increasing to high levels, doubling year-on-year.

Here at Cre8ive, we specialise in websites that are optimised for mobile devices using Responsive Design. Contact us if you are concerned about your site Email or phone 03 474 1075.

Is your site mobile-friendly? You can check here: mobile friendly website check

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What Mistakes are you Making in your Headlines?

Only a small percentage of viewers will read your blog post or article. As our time is scarce, we only want to invest in articles that will bring value to our lives  - personal or business. In order to get the viewer to click on your tweet, Facebook post or link from a search, follow these nine guidelines to increase your click-through-rate.

  1. Plan Your Headline: this is where the majority of your time writing the blog should be spent. Ensure it will resonate with your target market.
  2. Quality not Quantity: Focus on value rather than length.
  3. Use numbers: Headlines containing numbers tend to outperform other types of headlines. Use a low number to illustrate a concise blog or a higher one to emphasis an in-depth article. Oddly, odd numbers.
  4. Build a list of interesting adjectives such as Effortless Painstaking Incredible Essential Strange which will help grab the reader’s attention
  5. Try to create original content and use case studies and data to help illustrate your points.
  6. Experiment with trigger words such as: what, why, how, or when. But don’t use a number with a trigger word. Using action words (verbs) is also a good tactic.
  7. Arouse Curiosity: Headlines with questions can be effective but never to ask a question that your reader can answer “no“ to. Similarly, if you answer the question in the headline, there is no need for people to read the article!
  8. Made a valuable promise: what the reader will learn in only a few minutes that will be incredible useful?
  9. Say NO to Positive Superlatives: A study by Outbrain found the average click through rate on headlines containing negative superlatives such as “never” or “worst,” surprisingly performed 63% better than those containing positives, like “always” or “best”. It also showed that having a positive superlative under-performed compared to no superlative at all. Words such as best, fastest, cheapest have been overused causing readers to switch off. However, negative terms are more likely to interpreted as authentic and genuine.

The headline is your showstopper – get this right and your article will actually be read and hopefully shared!

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Get Ready for the latest Facebook Changes for Business Pages

Facebook introduces new features and updates on a regular basis and it's hard to keep up. However, here are some key changes you should be aware of:

  1. The design layout of all business pages is changing:

    Existing
    Current Facebook Business Layout

    will become
    New Facebook Business Page Layout

    Be prepared for these changes that will happen within the next few months.

  2. Improving Ad Performance with the Carousel Format for Images
    Last year, Facebook began to roll out the carousel format for Facebook ads, which let advertisers showcase multiple images and links in one ad. Since then, Facebook has reported that advertisers have seen carousel link ads drive 30-50% lower cost-per-conversion than single-image link ads.

    Advertisers can display 3-5 images with separate links and Facebook believes that the carousel format is attention-grabbing and helpful for both direct response and brand awareness marketing.
    Within this single advert you can direct people to specific locations on your website.

    Facebook Carousel Ad

    Tip: Your imagery should always look high-quality – keep to image sizes and text length:
    • Recommended image size: 600 x 600 pixels
    • Image ratio: 1:1
    • Text: 90 characters
    • Headline: 40 characters
    • Link description: 20 characters

    Be careful when adding text to your post images as you cannot have more than 20% text. See how much text is on your image.

  3. Facebook Mobile Version Call to Action Button
  4. The Call-to-Action mobile button changed
    The mobile version of your Facebook Page now has a Call-to-Action (CTA) button directly under the page cover image. It is now bigger, brighter and more prominent.
    You can either have a link to your website or you can add a ‘call button’. The downside of this improvement is that once you add the phone option, the desktop version of your Facebook page does not have a ‘Contact Us’ CTA anymore. The Website Button is shown on all devices however. We have created a guide on how to set up your call to action.

     

    The two Desktop Versions:

    - Website Link included

    Facebook Call to Action Website Link

    - When you add the phone number, the link disappears

    Facebook Desktop Call Now Website Link Disappears

  5. Facebook Shop and Service Section

  6. New Shop & Service Sections
    Facebook rolled out two new sections for every business mobile page.
    The Shop section helps retail businesses bring their products to the forefront of their Page, while the new Services section enables service businesses to showcase their offerings at the top of their Page. For example, a spa can add their services menu to their Page or highlight the line of products they sell, helping people get to know their business faster.
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How Google’s Updated Search will Impact your Business

Earlier in 2015 Google updated local search results so that only three local businesses are highlighted instead of seven.

The search has been redesigned to align with the mobile user interface:

Google Search Location shows 3

The obvious impact will be less phone calls and sales for those businesses that appear lower than the third position but improve business for the top 3 leading companies.

Google's Updated Search - What has changed:

• Only 3 local listings are visible
• Local listings have higher priority and listed at the top of the page below paid listings
• The map is larger and focused to your location (example above: Dunedin)
• Opening times are listed
• Button for Google Maps Directions has been added
• While browsing in a mobile device there is a Call-Button instead of the actual phone number, which can be seen on the desktop
• Google+ has been removed
• Branded anchor-text of URL has been replaced with ‘Website’

By clicking into the map or on the “more” button, all Google My Business listings can still be found but are much less visible compared to Google’s page one.

How can you improve your Google listing?

To improve your local listing it’s very important to ensure that your Google My Business (GMB) page is fully optimised. This means ensuring you have completed all information fields such as opening hours, a description, location on Google Maps, contact details and so on. You must also ensure you have verified your account.

Google My Business completed

If you have been affected by the recent update or if you are having difficulties with setting up your Google My Business account, please get in touch with us as we are happy to assist.
Give us a call on 03 474 1075 or email cre8ive@cre8ive.co.nz

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