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People will spend more time in locations where they feel safe and comfortable. Seeking the great outdoors and venues, recreational experiences, destinations within their own vehicle, touring museums and art galleries, exploring restaurants and breweries. How about something fun, unique, enjoyable, rich in natural culture, history, and just different?
With this in mind, it is therefore crucial that you, the Entrepreneur Tourism Operator think in these terms when developing your product offerings. Think about the adventurous spirit, the explorer, the family activity. How old, young, limited, new, or local are your tourists and customers? Are there gaps in the market that you can meet with your resources and experience?
In order to make your business profitable and to maintain your viability over the long term, you may need to learn how to*:
In addition to establishing good business practices, tourism operators need to establish a philosophical foundation for their products and programs. Tourism is a customer-service industry that relies extensively on local resources for the product. It is important to establish a personal and business philosophy (other than financial) for such things as:
The ability to develop and operate sustainable tourism businesses is crucial to the long-term viability and market of the industry. A long-term approach to tourism depends on the wise use and conservation of our natural resources; the protection and enhancement of our environment; and the preservation of our cultural, historic, and aesthetic resources (beauty).
Ecotourism has become the most recognized marketing term and concept consistent with the notion of sustainable tourism. There is an increasing requirement to deliver products in an environmentally responsible manner, not only because new tourists expect us to, but because as an industry, our survival depends on it.
DEFINITION OF ECOTOURISM Non-consumptive, purposeful travel, that creates an understanding of cultural and natural history, while safeguarding the integrity of the ecosystem and producing economic benefits that encourage preservation. Ecotourism implies a scientific, aesthetic, or philosophical approach with a high level of interpretation. From the report adventure Travel and Ecotourism: The Challenge Ahead' prepared by the Canadian Tourism Commission, October; 1997.
By definition, ecotourism involves experiencing and learning about a natural environment or preserved culture. Wildlife viewing is one of the most common activities of ecotourists, with viewing of plants and vegetation an important secondary one. Spring and summer are the busiest times for these activities, but other seasons offer unique experiences as well. Winter, for example, provides opportunities for animal tracking, while both spring and fall are excellent times for bird watching (as summer migrants travel to or from winter habitats).
Eco-tourists tend to stay longer and spend more money per day than the average tourist. Expenditures are more likely to benefit the local community because eco-tourists seek out local goods and services, as part of their desire to experience the 'authentic' destination.
Ecotourism is not likely to overwhelm existing economic activities such as agriculture, but rather promotes mutually beneficial linkages within a diverse, integrated economy. The emphasis on local ownership of accommodations and other services ensures that most profits and job opportunities are retained locally while fostering a sense of community empowerment and control. Ecotourism often thrives in outlying regions that big business has not yet discovered.
To develop a new or innovative product, the process must begin with a solid foundation. Try writing an overview of your business, considering the following key areas. Key points for a product’s foundation include:
New Mexican cuisine is primarily known for its fusion of Pueblo Native American with Hispano Spanish and Mexican cuisine. Running through it all is the chile pepper: red if the pod is ripe, green if it's harvested early. What a great opportunity to discover this must-visit culinary destination through a food tour!
The enchanting landscapes of New Mexico have drawn artists from around the globe. Native American art, museums, galleries, and arts centers in every corner of the state are dedicated to the expansion and exploration of contemporary arts and culture. Immerse your visitors in a truly unique cultural experience.
Where the Rockies begin, the State is also home to five national forests, 15 national parks and monuments, 34 state parks, and 26 wilderness areas. Wheeler Peak, near Taos, is New Mexico’s highest peak 13,161 feet, and Elephant Butte Lake State Park, near Truth or Consequences, is home to the state’s largest lake. This vast and eclectic array of outdoor attractions lends itself to a wide variety of tour opportunities of all sizes for adventurers and explorers to experience and discover why New Mexico is known as the Land of Enchantment.
New Mexico’s vibrant culture and history includes 23 pueblos, tribes, and nations where visitors can explore and experience Native communities, Native American Feast Days, annual markets, museums, gatherings & Pow Wows.
The possibilities are endless where exploration and adventure abound. Every year the Land of Enchantment attracts millions of visitors who seek out its scenic beauty and infinite varieties of outdoor recreation. Jeep tours are a great way to offer scenic adventures to all types of visitors.
The Rio Grande, which ribbons through the state from north to south, is the fourth-longest river in the U.S. Give the gift of serene and rapid waters, vast mountainous views, red rock, waterfalls, wildlife, and wildflowers in bloom. From Rio Chama to the San Juan and Animas Rivers to the Pecos, Canadian, Cimarron, Mora and Gila Rivers. New Mexico supplies an abundance of rafting and kayaking tour opportunities.
Attempt to answer these same questions for your product:
Once you have laid the foundation and are clear on the purpose of your product, structure naturally follows. These components of structure can now be figured into your product:
Before beginning to market products, you must be certain of success. Far too often, people think their product is great and do not see or hear the signs indicating that, although it may be great, it is not what the target market wants. The excitement of entrepreneurial work and the novelty of creating a product can blind operators.
Wise entrepreneurs think of their product ideas as questionable and find concrete evidence to prove their worthiness. Here are seven common reasons why new products fail.
When you are developing a product, it is important to consider that your customers can differentiate your product from that of your competitors. If they cannot, you will compete head-to-head for consumers with no advantage.
Your product can be different in a number of ways. Perhaps your product competes with your competitors in one or more of the following ways:
Refer to the Entrepreneur Tour Operator Toolkit - Branding & Marketing Guide as your next step.