6 ways to have a more creative tourism business

We all want to stand out from the crowd with great ideas and experiences that leave consumers speechless and wanting to hire us.¬†But, in practice, it is easy to get caught up in routine, on to-do lists, on emails and calls.¬†And when you want to see, the day is over and you haven’t spent a single second fostering creativity.

6 ways to have a more creative tourism business

In a market full of proposals, without a doubt, creativity is an indispensable ally. So, if you are looking to make your tourism business more attractive and memorable to your consumers, or if you are just starting out in business and want to do it on the right foot, then we have some tips for you. 

Since we wrote this article, we have put out our annual report on bookings statistics, travel trends, tourism industry and news on tourism destinations and marketing.

1. Create the space in your mind

One of my favorite business books is¬†Business for Punks: Breaking All the Rules – The BrewDog Way,¬†by James Watt.¬†It’s a great book to read if you want to build a stellar product, develop a compelling core mission, and set yourself apart from the crowd.¬†Here is one of my favorite tips from this author:

To create something meaningful, you must first make room in your mind. A creative space to allow your ideas to germinate, grow and prosper. To work harder, think better, and focus efficiently.

If the best ideas for your business come to you when you are in the middle of a walk, be sure to make time to walk frequently. Instead of rushing between tasks, give yourself some space to really think about the direction your business is heading and what makes you different. Perhaps your next best tour or business differentiator comes to mind.

Having said that, if you also find it inspiring to share your ideas with others in order to foster creativity together, then you should also prioritize those instances! 

 

2. Define why your business is different

To find a competitive advantage, you have to create  something  that makes your tour and activity company stand out from the crowd for a certain niche. For example, you can create your own tour category or offer a standard tour type in a new and innovative way.

On the other hand, you can provide exceptional value, for example with free add-ons like free photos or branded stickers. Paid add-ons can provide even more value: for example, offering a video package during a day of diving or parachuting. 

3. Understand what your customers want 

A great tool to aid you in your creative quest is¬†¬†Bernadette Jiwa’s¬†fantastic¬†Difference Map.¬†It will not only give you the purpose of your business, but also a competitive advantage.¬†It helps you recognize why your company exists and how it creates value for your customers.

4. Bring your authenticity and passion to your business

What do you really love? What has motivated you to do what you do? Make sure that this same essence is reflected in all the spaces of your business: your website, your social networks, your corporate materials, and even the emails you send. If you are passionate about what you do, others are more likely to be drawn to your experiences. And you can be sure that, working your brand from your own authenticity and motivation, there will be no other like you. 

You should be proud of every aspect of your business.¬†And what you don’t like … change it.¬†For example, do you feel that your website is not up to par with your services?¬†Make¬†a new one¬†¬†or check what you can modify to make the¬†user experience better.¬†Do you think you can improve your content to generate more engagement with your potential consumers?¬†Start by looking at what’s working and what’s not (you need to familiarize yourself with tools like¬†Facebook Insights¬†).¬†

Other suggestions?¬†For example, if you are passionate about jazz, don’t wait until you get home to listen to it: turn it down in your office so that your consumers can know a little about you.¬†If you are passionate about photography, share your favorite works on the walls or even on your social networks, if you consider that they are related to your area.¬†Consumers value brands with their own personality. ¬†¬†

5. Think outside the box (or “outside the box”)

In her book¬†¬†The Creative Habit¬†, Twyla Tharp writes, “Before you can think outside the box, you must start with a box¬†.”¬†What a phrase!

As a provider of tours and activities, your box is your main offer. What are you doing? How do you add value to your customers? Do you offer walking tours, teach diving or organize cooking workshops?  

Once you’ve defined your box, it’s time to take the next step.

You must realize that you don’t have to do things the way you¬†should¬†.¬†Just because everyone does it doesn’t mean you can’t do it any other way.¬†Here’s another great line from Twyla Tharp:¬†“Creativity is an act of rebellion¬†.¬†¬†

If your competitors are all doing the same thing, don’t you think it might work to do something drastically different?¬†

6. Leave behind the thought “I am not creative / a”

You don’t know how many times I’ve heard people say “I’m not creative.”¬†This self-imposed hurdle is the first thing you need to get rid of to find your next idea.¬†Now, let’s see other points that will be useful to you:

  1. The first ideas that come to mind will rarely be the best, but they will help you think of others. Write them down. Each of them. 
  2. There are no ridiculous ideas. Do not fear the absurd. A tour in pajamas? Perfect. A tattoo shop on a bicycle? Great. You will have time to discard later.
  3. Try exercises that develop your creativity. For example: generating ideas for tours and activities inspired by random objects. 
  4. I heard this phrase in a publicity talk and it was incredibly inspiring: “What would I like to see existed in the world?”
  5. Ask for opinions. Accept suggestions.
  6. Do some research on original ideas that others have already carried out. Take a look, for example, in this article with the strangest attractions in the world .
  7. Don’t despair if the ideas don’t come right away.¬†The brain takes time to process information.¬†After thinking and informing yourself on the subject, leave the rest to your unconscious.¬†
  8. Pay attention to your intuition. It will whisper to you when the idea is right. 
  9. Experiment. Proof. And in the meantime, read the success story of our client  Barcelona Architecture Walks  who, at some point, was in a place similar to yours.