FutureTourism Marketing Trends in Taiwan
Taiwan,an island in China, is one of the world’s popular tourist’sdestinations. It was formerly known as Formosa and it covers an areaof approximately 36,193 square kilometers. It currently holds apopulation of 23,373,517 inhabitants. It is at the Southeastern costof Asia and to the North of Japan. It was formerly inhabited by theTaiwanese aborigines before, until the arrival and settlement ofDutch and Spanish. Taiwan is a region of varied cultures rapidlydeveloping into different local customs and traditions. Taiwan ishowever commonly known as the home of architecture, relics,prehistoric civilization and folk arts. Some of the many featuresthat make Taiwan a major tourism sight are the love river inKaohsiung, Mount Dabajia in Hsincu County, numerous national museumsamong other many majestic features.
Figure1Mount Dabajia, Hsinchu county
Every industry has its peak and lowseasons and tourism in Taiwan is no exemption. The chart belowrepresents the current tourism arrival rates n the region.
Figure2: Tourism arrival rates in Taiwan
It is indubitable that marketing is imperative in ensuring thesuccess of any tourism sector. However, for the tourism sector tocontinue performing satisfactorily there is dire need to be aware ofthe future trends that the industry might go through. Benckendorff,Edwards, Jurowski, & Liburd (2009), suggests that one major trendthat is likely to happen in the tourism industry is proliferation oftechnology. This, as he argues, will have an effect in the marketingaspect of the sector. This essay examines the advancement oftechnology as a trend and how it relates to marketing. It alsoexamines the agreeableness, or the lack of it, of this trend and itsimportance. It is one of the chief employers in Taiwan, a worldtourist destination.
Today,the use of technology has been adopted, and this adoption is bound toincrease in the future. The tourism sector in Taiwan will developfrom the results of this trend. As time passes, so does thecomplexity of people’s needs and hence the tourism industry shouldadapt to these changes to continue flourishing. The proliferation oftechnology shall affect the marketing trends, practices andtechniques of the tourism sector in Taiwan in different ways.
Benckerdorffet al (2012) predicts that the travel agents will be less needed asmuch of the purchasing and inquiries will be done through the net. Iagree with this prediction since technology makes tasks moreexpedient, replacing the need for human personnel. This is becausemany inquiries and transactions can be done over the internet.Brebbia and Pineda (2012) assert that transactions over the internetneed to be quicker, faster, reliable and more convenient. Today,organizations are using online technology to connect with theirclients, but this is bound to increase in the future. Marketers willtherefore have to ensure that their online services are effective andclients can be able to get all the information they need from thewebsites. Travel agents will thus reduce in number in the future asmany people will make their inquiries, book their rooms and even maketheir payments online. This is also a marketing aspect sincemarketers will ensure that they can provide the services that shouldbe provided by travel agents. This will be important in increasingthe number of tourists in the Taiwan tourism industry. It istherefore agreeable that in the future, with increased technologicalproliferation, there will be fewer travel agents.
Benckendorffet al (2009) also predicts that as a result of technologicaladvancement, there will be stiffer and increased competition amongstvarious tourism destinations. The availability of information on aparticular tourism destination, its services as well as availableproducts on a website will lead to comparisons and increase thecompetition among the tourist industries. I entirely agree with thisprediction since the tourism sector will be better oriented. As such,the tourism sector in Taiwan will face more competition from otherdestinations across the world. Much marketing will be done online,through social media and websites. Therefore, the more informationthose tourist destinations will be able to provide online, the morecustomers they will get (Brebbia & Pineda, 2012 Yeoman, 2012).As a matter of fact, marketers will be bestowed with theresponsibility of ensuring that their social media engender increasedtraffic to ensure that they survive in the cut-throat competition.Much more rigorous advertising by the tourism destinations shall haveto be embraced in Taiwan (Taiwan Today 2007). Therefore, to survivein the future, Taiwan will have to employ more effective techniquesto gain competitive advantage over other popular destinations in theworld.
Asa result of proliferation in technology, there will be an increasedneed for secure online reservations. Today, online bookings have beenadopted by tourists and by the organizations themselves. However,with increased technology knowledge comes increased risks in thetourism sector Yeoman (2012). The Tourism industry in Taiwan willthus have to ensure that there is increased online security for theircustomers. One aspect that determines whether a customer will remainloyal to a company or an organization is the level of securityprovided. Booking and communicating with target markets is not onlytime saving but also offers a lot of convenience (Brebbia &Pineda, 2012). However, we have heard and seen cases where websitesof popular companies have been hacked and confidential informationleaked. The marketing departments therefore, need to ensure thatthere is online security (Taiwan Today, 2007). On the same,confidential information about the customers, including theirpersonal information and payment details needs to be secure fromhackers. Therefore, I agree with the prediction that there will beproliferation of technology in the future, and this will lead to anincreased need for online security for customers. This is importantin giving any sector or organization increased competitive advantageover the competitors.
Benckendorffet al. (2009) further argues that as a result of increasedtechnological advancement, tourists who are more experienced will putup their own personal holidays with direct bookings. As mentionedabove, advancement in technology will lead to reduction in the numberof travel agents. As such, tourists will be able to make their directpersonal bookings. As a result, there are chances that some touristswho are widely travelled will put up holidays that probably do notcoincide with the arrangements of the various tourism destinations.This is definitely true. The marketing department of the tourismboard in Taiwan will thus have to work towards ensuring that allthese plans are addressed. When such needs will be met, Brebbia andPineda (2012) argue that this is the beginning of satisfiedcustomers. Customer satisfaction is an imperative element in anysuccessful industry and hence, when tourists are satisfied, they willremain loyal.
Theprediction suggested by Benckendorff et al. (2009) is definitelyimportant as it is key in equipping the tourism sector. Taiwan candefinitely benefit from the results of increased proliferation oftechnology. Presently, there is use of technology in the tourismindustry in Taiwan (Taiwan Today 2014). However, there is bound to bemore use and complexity in the use of technology. Technology isdrastically advancing and hence, the sector needs to be prepared inany developments that might happen in the future. The needs oftourists are drastically becoming complex. On the same, there isincreased need for customer satisfaction, especially with theincrease in competition. When customers are satisfied, they arelikely to remain loyal. In conclusion, therefore, the predictions byBenckendorff et al. (2009) are not only true but also very importantto the Taiwan tourism industry. In the future, there will beincreased competition, increased need for online security, increasedonline marketing, and a decrease in travel agents. The marketers needto be aware of these likely occurrences and be equipped to make thenecessary changes when time comes.
Benckendorff,P., Edwards, D., Jurowski, C., & Liburd, J. (2009). Exploring thefuture of tourism and quality of life. Tourismand Hospitality Research.9(2): 171=183.
Brebbia,C., & Pineda, F. (2012). Sustainabletourism 11.London: WIT Press.
TaiwanToday. (2014). Taiwan,a Tot 5 Travel Destination.Retrievedfromhttp://www.taiwantoday.tw/ct.asp?xItem=224694&ctNode=413
Yeoman,I. (2012). 2050tomorrow’s tourism.New York: Channel View Publications.