What we do

Transforming the visitor economy

We work collaboratively in destinations with communities, businesses, DMOs and other stakeholders to engage them in (re)discovering what is great about their place, helping them to view it through the eyes of a tourist and supporting the development of ideas about how they can maximise value from tourism.

We believe that actions are more important than words and use the momentum from our engagement to create an enthusiastic and motivated group of people, willing to work together to co-create compelling experiences that tell the story of the place and all that it stands for.

Our approach recognises that the destinations that thrive in the 21st Century will be those that: rediscover the true meaning of hospitality; provide experiences tailored to the individual; facilitate meaningful interaction between host and guest; compete by enhancing value rather than reducing price and; use tourism as a means to create great places to live and work as well as to visit.

Each of the places in which we work is different and so we do not offer a one size fits all approach. The type of activities that we have experience of managing, include :

  • Destination health checks

Our destination health checks are designed to create a snapshot of the visibility of a destination to targeted visitor segments, provide an insight into the role tourism plays within the wider economy, environment and community as well analysing the characteristics of the tourism experience. Many of our clients find it a useful vehicle for initiating constructive dialogue with stakeholders about the place and actions that can be taken in the short term to improve the visitor experience.

  • Facilitating stakeholder dialogue and strategy development

We use a range of creative tools to engage stakeholders in identifying the best things a place has to offer. We focus on uncovering the hidden gems as well as the more well-trodden tourism assets to create experiences and stories that local people will be passionate advocates for and that will appeal to new as well as existing visitors.

  • Strategy implementation

Tourism strategies often present a snapshot of the aspirations of a destination.  There is, however, a world of difference between creating a strategy and making it happen.  We work with destinations and DMOs to help deliver the vision and strategy (whether written by us of by another organisation), engaging stakeholders, defining key milestones and identifying and overcoming obstacles to success.

  • Creating insight into visitor characteristics

We take a visitor centred view of the tourism offer and analyse existing routes to market, supporting individual businesses in identifying ways in which they can promote themselves and the destination within a cohesive framework.  We review the profiles of current and potential new visitor types and keep abreast of the emerging technologies that provide travellers with the freedom to explore their destination. With an ever-growing range of apps available, we help businesses identify how to use these to maximise impact.

  • Maximising the value from creative, cultural, heritage and tourism sectors

Working together, the tourism, creative, culture and heritage sectors provide significant opportunities to significantly increase visitor spend as well as creating a unique sense of place.  We work at the interface between these sectors, creating a common language, building a vision of the role of tourism, creating networks, defining visitor expectations, embedding what it means to be a host and maximising visibility.

  • Maximising value from environmental and wildlife assets

When managed carefully, tourism can be a great asset to wildlife areas: increasing public awareness of the importance of conservation, providing income and investment to support longer term stability and generating a sense of pride among local people.  We have worked across many aspects of wildlife tourism on large and small scales.  This has included projects  to create guidelines for international organisations to use tourism as a means to generate income for and create awareness of species conservation; delivering training to support tourism organisations in adapting their practices to minimise pollution and auditing supply chains to support sustainable sourcing and facilitating trade associations in the development of welfare standards.

 

We have worked with:

UK destinations – using culture and the creative industries to embed the personality of place at the core of the tourism offer.  Find an example of our work in this area here

European destinations – engaging hotels in dialogue with their communities to support the better integration of tourism into local life and enhance economic benefits for all.

Stakeholders within a single destination –  to reinvigorate tourism by celebrating the unique assets of place and improving connectivity between different elements of the visitor offer.  Find an example of this type of project here

Leading thinktanks –  to explore the issues of over tourism and rethink the metrics that can support and maximise tourism benefits for local people.