Tourism Industry Still Hasn’t Learnt

Back in the 80s we identified Japan as a growth visitor market and spent millions of marketing dollars attracting them to visit. As a result numbers started to increase, however, in a very short period of time the industry started to get feedback from Japanese visitors that included “they don’t know how to look after us”.

It was clear that very little market research had been carried out before we spent all those marketing dollars, to understand that the level of service the Japanese receive on a daily basis was far better than the best service most businesses provide in New Zealand.

The result was we tried to rectify the situation and it’s clear we are still trying to rectify the problem of poor service in the industry.

You would think that we may have just learnt something from that experience, but no not a thing.

China and other Asian countries are our new growth markets as our European markets continue to decline. Research, the Minister of Tourism and the CEO of Tourism New Zealand still see the quality of service and the lack of understanding of visitor expectations from these markets as an issue.

The question is how many more marketing dollars are we going to waste before we learn these basic lessons. We need to do the research before we spend the money and ensure we understand and deliver the tailored experiences and service levels these visitors expect, therefore avoiding the power of today’s negative visitor feedback.

We must understand that these visitors have plenty of other options, alternative destinations that understand these markets far better than we do.


Customer Experiences is an organisation specialising in the developing of high quality customer experiences. For further information – contact Chris Bell Managing Director Customer Experiences Ltd email mb 027 2792360