Term Paper: Tourism Strategic Planning Regional and Organizational Development

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Tourism- Stratigic Planning, Regional and Organisational Development

Marketing Strategies Applied to Tourism

The Case of the Copacabana Palace

Tourism has always been an extremely popular industry, generating billion dollars in revenues each year. Depending on the land's resources and the authorities' ability to properly manage them, countries have the possibility of reaching national growth and development through touristy activities. A most relevant example of a country who has managed to become a great touristy attraction is Brazil. However there are still important issues that need to be addressed, such as uneven distribution of wealth and still increased poverty rate, the country is developing with the support of its touristy industry.

The most significant tourist operations taking place in both Brazil as well as any other country include hosting the guests, offering them high quality products and services, organizing trips to local touristy attractions and organizing special events. An organization that has well managed to mix these operations and present customers with the ultimate quality is the Copacabana Palace in Brazil.

The Copacabana Palace is a five star hotel located on the Copacabana beach. It possesses two separate restaurants, indoor as well as outdoor pools and saunas, solarium, gym and massage facilities. The hotel was built in 1932 and it currently possesses 225 rooms, all single, double and family rooms. The hotel is strategically located to face the beautiful Copacabana beach but it is also close to the center of Rio de Janeiro.

The hotel presents their clients with the highest standards in quality; employs the best personnel to serve the customers' needs and possesses and extremely skilled and capable marketing team to focus on strategic planning and development at both organizational as well as regional level.

2. Target Market

In order to identify their Target Market, the marketing department at Copacabana Palace first identifies their potential customers, then they conduct a market research, they choose a target market and finally, they develop a customer profile. This is all done in by constantly relating to the products and services the hotel offers. The methodologies used by the marketing staff are entirely correct and efficient and do not require any changes. The only amendment is that they need to keep their strategies up-to-date and their actions and decisions have to reflect both micro as well as macroeconomic forces that might influence the touristy industry. Proof of the efficiency of the methodologies implemented to identify the target market stand the success of the hotel and the satisfaction of the customers.

As such, during the first stage, that of identifying the potential customers, the Copacabana marketing team has to analyze two potential customer groups: individual customers and business customers. Individual customers include citizens who register at the Copacabana Palace for social purposes, while business customers include those small and large companies that desire to organize several meetings within the Copacabana Palace. Because the hotel can satisfy the needs of both segments, both individual and business customers will be further on considered as potential customers.

The market research is conducted by the company's employees and it gathers and analyzes data concerning demographics, geography and customers' behavior. After all available information have been gathered and processed, Copacabana is ready to choose a target market and define a profile of their consumers'. As such, based on the data gathered and the specifics of the Copacabana products and services, the target market is formed of individual customers, both men and women, of ages between 25 and 55 who register above medium incomes and of companies who have high turnovers and afford to pay the counter value of the services provided by Copacabana Palace.

The limitations of individual customers' target market are explained by the fact that men and women under the age of 25 rarely have sufficient financial resources to afford staying at Copacabana and that men and women older that the age of 55 generally dislike the agitation in Rio de Janeiro and prefer more quiet and secluded resorts.

3. Customer Information

Customers are generally informed in regard to the hotel's two main sets of services:

hosting travelers and visitors that desire to spend their holidays in Rio de Janeiro and hosting business meetings and other events

1. Copacabana Palace mainly promotes their services throughout brochures and the main media channel used is the Internet. Television advertisements and radio announcements have a relatively small percentage in the company's overall promotions. This is generally due to the fact that the target market is spread across the entire globe. In the attempt to address potential customers, Copacabana would have to develop several advertisements, translate them into numerous languages and air them on numerous television channels. This would generate insurmountable costs and might not be efficient as they would address an increased part of the globe's population that is outside the hotels' target market.

2. In order to address the business customers, Copacabana hands out brochures at business meetings and advertises their services on the Internet.

There are two ways in which Copacabana Palace could add more value to the promotion of their products. As such, to attract individual customers, the hotel should realize a filmed footage or a documentary about Rio de Janeiro and Copacabana Palace and have it aired on several television channels, covering the American, European and Asian continents. Airing this film would be cheap and efficient. Also, they could realize smaller brochures and send them to travel agencies across the globe.

The second method of adding more value to their promotional campaigns includes more television and radio advertisements aired locally. These announcements and advertisements would familiarize businessmen with the services provided by Copacabana Palace and would attract them. Considering the busy schedule of businessmen, the TV advertisements would be aired in the evenings and late at night in order to give businessmen the opportunity to get home and relax in front of the TV set. The advertisements should reveal that "the Copacabana Palace is the perfect setting for business functions, and the hotel is equipped to handle a range of events from small company meetings to major international conferences. The hotel has 10 private meeting rooms and a total capacity of 2000."

4. Tourist Expectations

The hosting operation is expected to deliver the highest quality of the hotel's products and services. Considering the international recognition of Rio de Janeiro, the beautiful Copacabana beach and the high standards subscribed by the Copacabana Palace, potential customers have increased expectations.

The Copacabana Palace has two methods of finding out what it is that their customers want:

1. They conduct market researches and participate to international conferences on touristy services, and 2. They directly ask the customers. When making a reservation for a hotel room or a business conference room, guests are asked to state any special desires or preferences.

However the strategies are useful, a more efficient result would be retrieved from enlarging the palette of activities that reveal customers' demands. As such, Copacabana Palace should conduct web researches. This means that the company would search the internet for customers' opinions; articles wrote about the hotel and they could even register on touristy forums and get first hand impressions from former or potential customers.

The second means to adding more value to their estimates of customers' expectations is a less traditional method, called Box-of-Donuts consulting. This non-orthodox procedure presupposes that buss drivers, salesman or any other locals that directly come in contact with tourists overhear their complaints, satisfactions and demands. As such, the hotel managers ought to meet with these locals and enquire them as to what they had heard or had been told by visitors. The strategy is called Box-of-Donuts as managers and local service providers have the conversations over coffee and donuts, brought by the hotel managers.

Both proposed strategies to add more value to the services provided by the Copacabana Palace are aimed to increase the hotel's awareness in regard to customers' expectations and desires. This insures hotel officials that they are prepared to meet their clients' demands or, the worse case scenario, they will know not to repeat the same mistake twice. For instance, if a tourist leaving for the airport complains to the bus driver about a certain service provided by Copacabana, the hotel can no longer satisfy his need, but they will know to better address it in future situations. As such, not only are the two strategies useful for foreseeing customers' expectations, they are also efficient to finding out their impressions and levels of satisfaction.

5. Linkage of Products and Services to the Hotel's Location

The Copacabana Palace is very strategically located to face the Copacabana beach but it is also close to the center of Rio de Janeiro. The near to beach location offers visitors both easy access to the ocean as well as a splendid view from their rooms. The close to center location offers easy access to the core of Rio de Janeiro, to parties, celebrations and night clubs. Furthermore, in the near vicinity of the hotel, customers can… [END OF PREVIEW]

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