Jul 1, 2017

Is Tourism OUR oil?

The other day, I was learning about Nigeria one of the most powerful countries in Africa. Nowadays they try to create start-ups based on new technologies, they try to educate its population in coding skills… Perfect! 
I also learned that they had oil… BUT the enterprises which extract, refine and distribute it are big corporations. So, they have the oil (and all the possible side effects: Pollution, etc) and others get the profit. Well, except for a few local people that allow this and they are also very rich! 
BUT… Jordi it is not this blog about Touristology? 
Calm down, Touristologists! I am the king of metaphors, remember?  For some countries, Tourism is OUR oil! We have to decide if we want to play Nigerian model OR to play the game as other countries (You-know-the-ones) which extract, refine and distribute their own oil! If you manage your Tourism resources, if you select your own segments, if you create tourism packages to satisfy their necessities that will be better satisfied during a trip, if you communicate and commercialize these packages… then you will have YOUR own Tourists. To them you can propose international routes, to them you can sell other Tourism destinations!!! 
Then, we would be a Tourism destination leader!!! 
On the other hand, if you don’t that… the big share of the profits will be for other enterprises which will get the trust and will manage THEIR Tourists… AND local population will get the bad side of the coin…. Carrying capacity!!! Gentrification...! 
Of course, few local people also will get profit and maybe for this reason they don’t see the necessity to propose a stimulating alternative for everybody OR maybe it is because a lack of Touristology’s vision! 
Do you want to play Tourism? Play it in the right way… Touristology’s way! Create, communicate and commercialize your own packages. You will get less side effects, more profits, higher salaries and happier citizens. 
I love Touristology’s games!!!

Jun 1, 2017

Is the gig economy related to generic or specialized Tourism? BOTH!!!

The other day, a group of Touristologists decided to give a presentation about Waynabox a new OTA in the European field selling trips AND SURPRISES!

Interesting enterprise! But… generic! Basically, because the main driver for the Tourists, Airline companies, Hotels and even for the new travel agency is… PRICE! So, in order to be successful, they need economies of scale… meaning a lot of customers.
For the Tourists, you get a surprise trip. Yes, BUT please don’t forget… at a low price!
For the Airlines companies and Hotels, you get customers when you have a low occupancy or empty seats. So, they use a basic principle in Yield/Revenue Management… Mark down the price. I hope that as managers... This is NOT all they will get?
Remember, we are wave managers. So, maybe we can create an example of specialized tourism where less Tourists and more revenues (RevPar, TRevPar) AND PROFITS (GopPar) can be a BETTER or COMPLEMENTARY business model for all the members of the chain of value!
Few days ago, appeared this article by John Hagel about the gig economy. I found the article very interesting! He explains that gig economy can be for “Routine tasks” AND for “Creative problem solving”… I began connecting the dots between trips surprises and opportunities in the gig economy!
To me, “Routine tasks” sounds generic and “Creative problem solving” sounds to opportunities for specialized Tourism!
Are you a specialized freelance with a set of high demand skills? What about you can go to a different city apply your skills and then enjoy the city?
By the way, some people call this combination of business and leisure Travel "Bleisure".
Do you think that companies from around the world are willing to hire the bests experts in the world?
Do you think that this combination of a job and Tourism can seduce these experts?
Do you think that they can use/enjoy an upgrade in the airline company in order to relax before, during and after the trip? Do you think that, for this segment, location and services of a hotel are more important than the price?
Ummmm  it sounds that you can use the butterfly strategy here!!!
Can you describe the chain of value of this segment? Can you describe the operations and processes in order to seduce both the segment and the enterprises? Can you prove that you are one of the best minds working in the best sector ever?
I love Touristology’s games!!! 
What about YOU???

May 13, 2017

Success? Only if you have YOUR own Tourists!!!

The other day (yesterday), I was in class listening to a wonderful presentation about Uber from one of the best Touristologists I have had the privilege to practice intellectual dancing with.
When she mentioned that Uber’s drivers don’t work for the company… “They are their own bosses!!!” I began to think that maybe the drivers believe that they are entrepreneurs… that they have an enterprise….
Suddenly, a metaphor appeared in my mind (I am the king of metaphors remember?) Some Tourism destination and tourism enterprises believe that they are doing well enough even when they don’t have their own Tourists but, instead, Tourists from other enterprise (you can call it a tour-operator, the biggest search engine /Social Networking Site or the new group buying or flash sales site….)…
Let me be crystal clear!
Drivers of Uber… You are not your own boss! You will be your own boss when you have your own customers/tourists!
Tourism destinations/ Tourism enterprises you will be successful when you have your own Tourists! Otherwise, you are the warehouse or the supplier of other enterprises! Nothing wrong with that BUT, we are talking about becoming your own boss or becoming a successful enterprise or Tourism destination, right?
It is NOT about quality tourism… It is NOT about other enterprises bringing their tourists that spend more money…
It is all about who owns the Tourists!
it is all about who gets the trust of the Tourists!
It is all about who gets the profit
it is all about who avoid (or get) the bad impacts (you can call it, carrying capacity)
It is all about enjoying the tasks of Touristologists seducing Tourists from around the world and making them YOUR TOURISTS!

A good example is this article that made me tweet this...

Most of the revenues of Priceline’s group came from outside United States. They sell THEIR Tourists to other countries… to small chains of hotels or independent ones.
For Priceline’s group is far difficult to do that in United States. Big chain of hotels build their own loyalty programs (think about Marriot for instance, with more than 100 million affiliates!) AND ALSO small ones which customize their services thinking about specialized segments:
Here, we talked about Chip Conley and their hotels based on magazines…
Here, we talked about Vail Resorts who target international customers creating a chain of value: An incoming travel agency (snow.com) and a specialized social networking site (epicmix.com). So, building and managing their OWN chain of value!!!
Interested in pass from THEIR Tourists to YOUR Tourists? Don’t’ ask me… Ask any of my Touristologists!!! They are the best minds working in the best sector ever, making wonderful presentations and making me feel the proudest Touristologists builder on earth!!!

May 2, 2017

Winners and losers in Tourism

Which Company/Tourism destination will win in Tourism? 
The one(s) giving support to the Tourists from the beginning to the end of the trip!
Will WoT/IoT help to give this support? Definitely!

Will Blockchain /Smart Contracts help to give this support? Definitely!

Touristologists connecting the dots! Touristologists changing the way we enjoy, manage and define Tourism!!!

Apr 26, 2017

From the city of the tourists to the tourists of the city

We need less criticism about tourism and more actions. We need more people applying Touristology and less people managing the tourism sector saying that tourism is not manageable (that make me tweet… “this is a good (and very sad) example of an oxymoron!!!)
We need to change from Top-Down strategies to Bottom-Up ones, as we analyze here AND here using analogy’s power…
We need to use the most important resource of any tourism destination… OUR people. They have to create, communicate and commercialize THEIR own tourism products.
We need less promotion efforts focused on foreign enterprises bringing THEIR tourists. We need less foreign investors and more use of the real sharing economy using OUR apartments, OUR hotels to seduce OUR tourists (as we discussed here).
We need to educate our people. We need to seduce OUR tourists, in this way we will love them and everybody will love Tourism!
Time to look for results NOT excuses! Time to create a stimulating alternative for everybody. Time to take the tourism sector in OUR own hands.
Yes, definitely, we need to change from the city of the tourists to the tourists of the city. OUR people have to select, seduce, bring OUR own tourists here! Proving that tourism is manageable, proving that we can create richness, good quality jobs and successful start-ups, proving that we are leaders in Tourism!!!

Apr 1, 2017

Let’s code some dreams!!!

One month ago… this was my tweet...
Teaching my students how to code his/her dreams in native mobile apps (iOS/Android) is one of the most gratifying things in my life!!! 
On Monday I will practice it! It will be the first day of a new subject! I love first days!!! 
I have been working in mobile development for the last 5 years, helping both, big organizations and start-ups to select the best approach to a multi-screen world.
I mean… 
1) Responsive web design: I enjoy dealing with Bootstrap and its approach to responsive web design!
2) Hybrids apps: Today the most popular approaches are… 
  2-1) Cordova/PhoneGap for people loving to reuse their HTML+CSS+JavaScript knowledge. 
   2-2) React Native for people thinking about using JavaScript in the frontend and also in the backend! 
  2-3) Xamarin that has the powerful support of big software enterprises like Microsoft (by the way... Great integration with Visual Studio), Oracle… but… you have to learn C# 
   2-4) Ionic (Angular) 
3) Native applications: I love reusing my knowledge of Java and XML in Android and discovering the benefits of functional programming. At the end of the day… I’m an old dog learning new tricks… first OOP (Object-Oriented Programming who better than Steve Jobs to learn about it!) now adding Functional Programming and getting Functional Reactive Programming! And… of course I fell in love with Swift at first sight!!! 
So, Responsive Web Design, Hybrid or Native Apps... Which is the best approach? 
As I always say... an intelligent answer begins with …. “It depends”. Effectively, “it depends” it is a good beginning but, it would be a know-it-all answer if you don’t add… It depends ON… In general, it will depend on the kind of device your customers use WHEN they deal with your company AND remember this device can be different (or a combination of devices) for every operation and process inside your company (YES! I mean inside your chain of value!!!!) You have to define the kind of operations and processes that you want to offer to the Tourists/Customer then, based on the kind of device they are mostly using, you have to make up your mind. 
It will also depend on your team, in the kind of expertise that they have… in their motivation to learn!
It will also depend on your budget…. So, there is NOT a perfect solution! In life, as in web-engineering as in Touristology you have to learn how to wear different HATS! 
To provide a good servuction…put your hotelier hat on! 
To create, communicate and commercialize a tourism package for a generic or specialized group… put your travel agent hat on! 
To sell NOW for THIS Day/hour… put your Yield/Revenue Manager hat on
We are Consilient Thinkers, nimbly passing from one Science to another, smiling and loving to dance…even under the rain!!!!   
So, I will be dancing on Monday!!! 
Everything is possible the first day. The objectives that appear in OUR syllabus are ALL possible: “To develop a MVP (minimum viable product) to check YOUR ideas with customers, potentials investors and professional developers, both in iOS and Android environments.” 
Let’s go for them!!! 
I, definitely, love first days!!!

Mar 8, 2017

Help the world to help YOU!!!

Some time ago, I wrote down a manual about Touristology, where I explained that we live in a connected world (I was following the ideas of Thomas Friedman and his marvelous book “The world is flat”). This connected world is especially true in tourism.

We can do business with everyone. The world is OUR office! So, if we want to succeed in tourism we have to do things globally! 
We send tourists around the world. We have to seduce tourists from around the world ...We can create international routes in order to satisfy the needs of specialized or generic tourists. 
What happens in other countries affects the security of all countries: wars, pollution, poverty, LACK OF ALTERNATIVES FOR LOCAL POPULATION ... If we want to increase security, to reduce pollution, to take care of the culture of the world, we have to implement measures on a global level. If we want to reduce pollution we have to do things globally. 
Which is the role of Touristology in this goal?

We must teach countries worldwide about how to create richness, employment, and protect their/ OUR culture using Touristology’s methodology. This will reduce their poverty, give them alternatives and, consequently, improvements to our security! This will also give opportunities for Touristologists around the world!

As the definition of Touristology says: “Touristology is the art and science of travel motivation promising improvements in quality of life, international contacts and broader perspectives for the tourist AND a way to take care of culture and create richness and employment for the tourist destination.” 
Yes, Touristologists… We definitely have to help the world to help YOU!!!