Stakeholders reflect on tourism development in Nigeria, recommend digital tools and technologies – The Sun Nigeria

By Sunday Ani

Nigerian tourism sector stakeholders recommended the application of digital tools and technologies for the development of the sector.

This was one of the consequences of a one-day stakeholder forum hosted by the Nigeria Tourism Development Corporation (NTDC) in the southeast on Friday, November 26.

Under the theme “Using digital tools for destination optimization and marketing”, the meeting aimed to chart the course for the recovery and acceleration of development in the tourism and hospitality industry.

In a statement after the meeting, stakeholders stressed that the global business ecosystem is constantly inundated with disruptive digital tools that increasingly make life and business transparent and qualitative, adding that tourism entrepreneurs must embrace tools. and digital technologies for a wider reach.

“The world is currently in an age where technology is the major backbone that is creating momentum in the leisure travel space.

“The digital revolution has brought about changes in the cultures of production, distribution and consumption of goods and services.

“Technology is changing the tourism market, increasing its reach, changing the characteristics of tourism jobs and the way destinations are promoted, while also demanding new skills from tourism entrepreneurs.

“Businesses that depend solely on physical contact will not perform optimally. Tourism marketers need to understand the trends in digital marketing and be able to adopt the tools necessary to stay competitive, ”they said.

They noted that the tourism sector has the capacity to generate sustainable revenues that would rival current crude oil revenues, bridging the gap between technology-driven and globally connected tourism businesses and traditional businesses. .

Part of the statement read, “Tourism businesses should embrace digital tools such as travel apps and digital marketing platforms, among others, to facilitate service delivery in the industry. Small sized videos and images are quite effective for destination marketing.

“Influencer marketing has proven to be quite effective. Consumers trust an influencer more than traditional advertising, so destination marketers should use influencers for destination marketing.

“We need to envision and deploy innovative solutions that are locally grown, practical and tailor-made for our environment and specific people. “

Stakeholders also agreed with NTDC’s belief that in order for Nigeria to become a tourism hub in Africa, it must develop domestic tourism, which in turn will increase the country’s attractiveness for sponsors. and investors.

They said, “The Tour Nigeria brand was created by the company to stimulate domestic consumption of our tourism assets and market tourism for increased income generation.

“The Federal Ministry of Information and Culture remains committed to providing an enabling environment for all agencies to function optimally with a view to boosting the tourism sector in Nigeria.

“There has to be effective collaboration between agencies between government and private sector practitioners for the industry to grow. “

However, they argued that domestic tourism was six times larger than international tourism and that all forum stakeholders agreed that the use of technology in the tourism ecosystem and hospitality was vital to the development and recovery of the sector.

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