Archive: Research

Bicycle Tourism Research

>>>> To all touring cyclists – I need your help – Please participate in my research study & let’s push bicycle travel forward. Thanks, Franziska <<<<

 

For my last semester of the European Master in Tourism Management, I was invited as a research scholar to the U.S. to conduct my research on Bicycle Travel. The focus of the research is on: Designing a human-centered bicycle tourism experience. It’s about understanding people’s past / present experiences on bicycle travel in order to inform how these experiences can be enhanced in the future and make bicycle travel more meaningful and memorable to touring cyclists.

 

The Research Target: All touring cyclists who have been / or currently are on a self-supported long-distance bike tour – at least a week or longer.

 

I need a total of 100 to 200 participants – so please, help to spread the word. The survey will be open until May, 15th.

 

>>>> You can fill in the survey directly beneath – just scroll down – or click on the following link: Online Survey on Bicycle Travel <<<<

 

Lots of thanks & happy cycling, Franziska.

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Germany – the travel destination?

For my Strategic Communication paper at the SDU (Southern Denmark University), I was researching on: Germany – the travel destination? How effective is the tourism logo of Germany for its branding/image as a destination from the perspective of young travelers?

 

Background: Places, invest like companies in building up a unique image through branding elements, like tourism logos. They contract professional Branding Agencies to form their new brand identity in order to gain their market share in the growing tourism industry with 1,035 million tourists crossing borders in 2012.

 

Methodology: Empirical data was gathered through an online quantitative survey of nine questions completed by 100 young international travelers (18 to 29). The results were put into the context of recent research in the field.

 

Literature Review: Literature review showed, that a good logo should be 1) recognizable, 2) meaningful and 3) affective. Effectiveness of the German Tourism Logo was therefore analyzed in terms of, how easy it is to remember the logo (recognition), how the logo contributes to build up a unique destination brand (meaningful) and how it enhances the willingness of young international travelers to visit or re-visit the country (affective).

 

Main Results:

– Germany is evaluated as a highly attractive destination to visit: 97% want to visit or return to Germany.

– Only 3% of the participants know about the tourism logo of Germany: low brand awareness.

– For young international travelers:  Beer, History, Local Events (e.g. Oktoberfest), Culture/Heritage & Nature were ranked as Top 5 attributes, that create a unique image of Germany as a travel destination.

– The majority of respondents experience a lack of meaning what the current logo tries to communicate: the message of the logo is not clear and doesn’t correspond with what young travelers see as the core elements of the destination brand Germany.

– Popular suggestions on how to modify the current tourism logo include combinations like:  history-nature-innovation, urban-history-art and beer-nature-tradition with an overall proposal to focus on a simple, clear, nice, appealing and unique image that is bold, playful, modern and self-confident. The integration of national symbols like flag colors or the iconic shape of Germany located in the heart of Europe were often mentioned.

 

Conclusion: Germany as a destination has high potential within the young travelers‘ tourism segment. Until now, the willingness to visit doesn’t result from a high brand awareness but is attributable to other causes. It is indisputable that awareness must be raised for the tourism logo to be an effective branding tool.

 

Future Outlook / Idea:  Taking into account that the current logo is badly rated, the GNTB could combine the existing Social Media Campaign with a ‘Design Germany’s new logo’ contest. This would guarantee that new logo ideas are designed by both locals and internationals with an increased brand awareness of Germany as a travel destination. Additionally, the results from this contest would allow the GNTB to choose a winning logo that is highly recognizable, easy to remember, and a meaningful representation of Germany as a unique and desirable travel destination.

 

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