A Destination Marketing Organization (DMO) is a company whose function is to promote a travel location. DMOs are experienced at putting themselves in the customer’s shoes and reaching them through highly targeted, personalized advertising. With the help of these professionals and the tools they use, you can gain insights into your customer’s commercial needs and challenges. As a result, you’ll be able to improve your own marketing and business practices to provide an experience that your customer truly sees as worthwhile, every step of the way.
By understanding how DMOs can help you with your customer’s journey, you open up an avenue of new opportunities that drive growth for your business. Find out what exactly DMOs do, then explore the different ways they can benefit your ability to reach your customers.
What are DMOs?
A DMO functions primarily as a representative. Think of a it as a PR firm for a specific location, where the long-term goal is to secure the financial interests of that location’s tourism industry. These often take the form of government-associated offices with “Tourism” or “Conventions and Visitors Bureau” in their name.
As the governing branch of a location’s visitor outreach, a DMO has a unique relationship with business in a given region. From hotels to event coordinators, DMOs interact with and help manage tourism-generating industry and festivities. As a result, they act as a hub of resources for all things in an area, coordinating with clients and gathering resources to promote destinations to a traveling audience.
With the importance of a brand experience, DMOs can be a value-generation machine. Offering customers an unforgettable experience is one of the best ways a company can increase its own revenue and drive loyalty. In fact, companies that lead in customer experience were found to outperform others by as much as 80%, with another 96% of customers saying experience was important in their loyalty to a brand.
By assembling infrastructure for customer and client engagement, DMOs add value through networking. Travelers of all kinds are directed by them to businesses and services. With the right insight, experience and network, they can help you improve and understand your customer’s journey.
How DMOs can help your customer’s journey
The DMO acts as a hub for information, communication, outreach and management. They’re made up of members that typically pay for the opportunity to network with peers and have their interests promoted to a larger public. This means that the many local businesses are represented within the framework of a DMO. By nature of this relationship, a DMO supports a community with a platform for community-devised solutions to central problems in the area - for example, in dealing with lost revenues from the COVID-19 pandemic.
Many communities - especially smaller, traditionally more rural areas - are plagued by a minimal amount of industry data in their particular region. But DMOs are one element of modern economies that can improve that situation. By networking experiences, boosting outreach and serving as a vendor for your targeted products, DMOs can help you own the customer journey.
DMOs provide exceptional value in terms of the information, services and hub of connected trade opportunities available to your customer throughout their journey. No matter what you’re offering - food, hospitality, recreation, you name it - DMOs can connect you to other businesses and services in the area to produce the greatest value for your customers.
In the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, better and more personalized deals and offers are exactly what consumers are looking to invest in. DMOs, especially with the power of modern tech solutions, can connect you with a network of collaborative business partners so that you can increasing add value for your customers regardless of their individual needs. The off-the-shelf products you can offer in terms of packages and discounts will help you attract customers at the earliest stages of your sales funnel.
Additionally, DMOs bring value to the table with a bigger-picture grasp of what travelers in your area are looking for. As experts in community resources and offerings, DMOs can provide insight into everything a city, state or country has available to businesses and customers in industries like yours.
It’s in a DMOs best interest to see you succeed, so they’ll be ready to coordinate with you on how to amplify your outreach. With the help of their expert advice, you’ll be able to better understand the challenges and questions common to the demographics that you’re targeting. You can then apply these insights to strategies like problem-focused content marketing designed specifically to answer these questions for travelers and draw attention to your company as a solution.
Selling to your target audience
Finally, depending on the resources and tech available to DMOs in your area, you’ll have access to networks and platforms for understanding travelers. While popular applications like Airbnb are in some part stealing the thunder of these marketing organizations, DMOs still have the advantage of being run by professionals whose job it is to network with the area and uncover new attractions and selling points.
DMOs by their nature provide a unified view of the entire tourism industry in the region and all its various moving parts. This is the first step in intelligently automating a customer journey that understands customers and can adapt marketing to their behavior.
Additionally, with the resources a DMO can connect you with, you can begin to better story map the journey of an out-of-town customer interacting with your products and services. An effective story map breaks down the activities and interactions of a customer with every aspect of a business model. From there, you can devise targeted marketing based on assembled customer profiles and better automate personalized messaging to target audiences.
Utilizing all your resources to improve client experience
In the world of digital commerce, understanding all the specifics of a customer journey can be difficult - especially if your business model revolves around tourism. Fortunately, DMOs are a staple of most communities that serves as a connective network for businesses. Use this resource as you might use an API - by connecting to and adding value to its impressive collection of resources.
With the right approach to data analytics and community engagement, DMOs can help you build new messaging and marketing strategies that can streamline the way you approach your customer’s journey. Explore these resources in your own marketing efforts to see how DMOs can best benefit you.