Update on tourism marketing structures

I would like to fill you in on the process of consultation that is currently under way with regards to future tourism marketing structures for Cape Town and the Western Cape.

A proposed model for tourism marketing was put forward this week by the MEC for tourism and economic development, Minister Alan Winde. The model is for a single tourism destination marketing structure and brand for Cape Town and the Western Cape, trading under a new name and operating according to a provincial tourism marketing strategy.

Cape Town Tourism has noted the proposal and embarked on a comprehensive negotiation process with the City of Cape Town and the office of the MEC. The Board of Cape Town Tourism has indicated that it is not in agreement with the proposal in its current format.

A set of guiding principles was agreed upon as an assurance for Cape Town Tourism to continue negotiations. These include, among others, that:

  • Roles and responsibilities should be clearly defined, with the provincial tourism organisation focusing on research and intelligence, on supporting regional and local tourism organisations and on the coordination of marketing activities.
  • Implementation of strategies, delivery of marketing and brand management are driven by local and regional tourism organisations, where partnership with the industry is most effective.
  • Marketing and visitor services must be delivered on a fully integrated basis, maintaining the relationship with the customer throughout his or her journey. It is a continuum that cannot be broken up into parts and managed by a variety of organisations.
  • Tourism marketing is apolitical and based on genuine (equal) partnership.
  • No assumptions must be made from the outset of a single brand and brand management must be maintained at regional or local level – where affinity with the brand is strongest. The real destinations and brands are at city, regional and local level.
  • Marketing strategies should be developed with input from regions and co-owned, and the current funding structure be enhanced ie city funding should not be used for provincial marketing.

Cape Town Tourism is committed to protecting the interests of tourism in Cape Town and finding a workable solution that will most effectively realise the tourism opportunities in the city, while eliminating duplication and confusion. Cape Town Tourism has received reassurance from the City of Cape Town that we are and will remain the city’s tourism promotional and marketing body and that Cape Town Tourism’s structure will not change. 

We have stressed the importance of consulting with the industry and will soon be embarking on a series of industry discussion forums regarding the proposed structure and Cape Town Tourism’s position on the proposal. We encourage you to participate to ensure that the best interests of our city’s tourism industry are protected.

Your enquiries and opinions on this matter are most welcome, please email me at mariette@capetown.travel.

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