Blogs these days abound literally everywhere. They are important marketing tools as well as perfect means to enhance customer-client relationships. This is especially true in the “people’s industry” of tourism. The Austrian National Tourist Office, for instance,reports live on its weblog about the latest trends and developments on holidays in Austria.
Similarily, the blog of the Austrian travel platform UrlaubUrlaub.at offers interesting insights and further details with regards to the travel destinations offered on its main webpage. This is also true for the “Social Travel Guide”Tripwolf: Their blog has even offered me the possibility to keep my friends and family updated on my round the world trip by posting regularly in the category Weltreisefieber.
Readers or subscribers to RSS feeds are thus permanently up to date with the latest developments, trends and hot deals in tourism and travel - and of course to have their say in forums, by posting comments, etc. Blogs may not (yet) trigger immediate buying decisions, they do however exert a strong influence on these decisions, either positively or negatively. Consider blogs an important strategic PR tool for clients to directly access, and discuss, your products, experiences and offers.
As for “our” field of interest, creative tourism, we had a look about what’s been going on internationally in terms of creative tourism blogs. Here are some (exciting) new results. Essentially, we found that creative tourism is already being discussed in many ways! A good example of this is our own national tourist office’s recent newsletter reporting on creative tourism development in Austria.
Here, we have compiled a short however by no means exclusive list of well-known creative tourism blogs internationally.
2008 saw US state New Mexico host the world’s first international conference about creative tourism development. Ever since, this trend is being supported by the UNESCO Creative Cities Network, part of which is the Austrian city Graz as “UNESCO City of Design”. Starting from the conference in 2008, “Santa Fe Creative Tourism” blogsregularly about the discussions and outcomes of the conference as well as the activities of their creative artists and visitors on the spot.
The author of Cultural Realms, Rossitza Ohridska-Olson, uses her blog to report about research in cultural as well as creative tourism, for instance regarding the “Creative Tourism Business Model”. Rossitza works as an international tourism consultant writing about and observing trends in destination marketing, world travel and cultural tourism.
Catriona Campbell lives and works in the English county of Kent and has an extensive background on creative tourism development. Part of this can be read on her blog, e.g. “My Vision for Kent’s Creative Coast”. Among others, readers will find interesting links and resources, for example about the definition of “creative tourism”: http://catrionacampbell.wordpress.com/what-is-creative-tourism/
Back in 2009, marketing and tourism consultant Catriona Campbell convened a meeting of the local tourism industry to discuss the potential of developing creative tourism activities in Kent. More about this can be found on her blog post.
Despite only being available in Swedish at the moment, Märta Gustafsson has already started to develop creative tourism opportunities in her Swedish home Hällekis, in the scenic nature reserve Kinnekulle, more than a year ago following her trip to New Zealand and a visit to Creative Tourism New Zealand. To support her efforts, she has also written a blog and offers those interested the possibility to stay up to date with the latest developments and trends in Sweden. Dear Märta, we look forward to receiving your information in English – and celebrating our exchange and efforts internationally! ;-)