How effectively can the Church Administration �promote the pilgrimage tourism product? �A strategic marketing approach

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Porter’s 4-Ps of marketing have supported a generation of aspiring tourism promoters in the execution of their duties and the fulfillment of their aspirations. Are the 4-Ps effective for all forms of tourism, and can they bring results when applied to pilgrimage tours and religious travel? The paper tries to assess the importance of the 4-Ps as factors for the development of the different dimensions of religious tourism (pilgrimage, culture, arts, traditions, etc.), from the experiences drawn from the implementation of a “development and promotion strategy” set in motion by the Synodical Office of the Holy Synod of the Church of Greece. The activities, proposed in the May 2012 “strategy paper for pilgrimage tours”, approved by the Holy Synod, and in the December 2012 “Collaboration Protocol”, signed between the Church of Greece and the Ministry of Tourism, are assessed as part of a 4-Ps marketing strategy for the development of this special interest form of tourism. There is an effort to assess each “p” as to a number of factors, in order to be able to provide guidance for further actions to be undertaken for the development of religious tourism.

Text of How effectively can the Church Administration �promote the pilgrimage tourism product? �A...

  • 1. Religious Tourism and Pilgrimage 5th Expert Conference Malta June 2013How effectively can the Church Administration p promote the pilgrimage tourism product? p g g p A strategic marketing approach [Learnings from the practices of the Synodical Office for Pilgrimage Tours of the Church of Greece]Christos Petreas, Business & Tourism Economist - Consultant EU Expert for tourism and regional development Special Advisor Synodical Office for Pilgrimage Tours and Development of Religious Tourism of The Holy Synod of the Church of Greece former Professor - Lecturer of tourism planning & development and tourism marketing e-mail: christos@petreas-associates.com / chrispetreas@gmail.com 2013 ATLAS RELIGIOUS TOURISM CONFERENCE MALTA CHRISTOS PETREAS 2010

2. Why religious tourism? More than 2/3 (88%) of the monuments of the World Heritage List have also religious significance (Shackley 2001) Approximately 75% of all inhabitants of the planet belong to the 5 most important religions i t t li i TWO out of THREE belong in one of only THREE religions The WRTA argues that the market is worth ~ $ 18 billion and handle 300 million passengers Lourdes is the most visited shrine in Europe and receives over 6 million visitors each year The Catholic Church has established a company for "Religious Charter2013 ATLAS RELIGIOUS TOURISM CONFERENCE MALTA 3. The typology of religious-pilgrimage tourism (western world) t i ( t ld) Pilgrimage tours Missionary trips Mi i i Cruises (Greece in October Steps of Apostle Paul) Conferences / meetings (15 million people in 17,000 meetings in 2006) Christian camps (involving 120,000 churches) Travel holiday volunteers (55 million Americans have participated) Youth / student movements (about 3 million young p p are ( y g people attending about10,000 private church schools)2013 ATLAS RELIGIOUS TOURISM CONFERENCE MALTA CHRISTOS PETREAS 2010 4. The 4-Ps of Porter + 5th 4 Ps PRODUCT PLACE PRICE PROMOTION + PEOPLE (important for religious tourism) 2013 ATLAS RELIGIOUS TOURISM CONFERENCE MALTA CHRISTOS PETREAS 2013 5. Product The Church of Greece identifies 4 tourism dimensions for pilgrimage & religious sites and monuments1. 2. 3. 4.Religious dimension Cultural dimension Historic dimension Environmental dimension2013 ATLAS RELIGIOUS TOURISM CONFERENCE MALTA 6. Place and the way it is perceived ... Pilgrimage visit Dedicated pilgrimage Incidental pilgrimageCultural visit Natural it N t l site Monumental visit Historical visit Art i it A t visit Museum visit Combination visitReligious celebrations and events Celebrations with pilgrimage element Celebrations with traditional element Celebrations with entertainment element COPYRIGHT CHRISTOS PETREASCombination visit2013 ATLAS RELIGIOUS TOURISM CONFERENCE MALTA 7. Price ... The cost is really secondary, secondary but is an important consideration PRICE is related to: Transport and accessibility ibilit Accommodation M l and other support Meals d th t facilities Faith element 2013 ATLAS RELIGIOUS TOURISM CONFERENCE MALTA 8. Promotion The religious attraction must be recognized, recognized and must appeal to one or more of the needs of the visitor The element of branding: 2013 ATLAS RELIGIOUS TOURISM CONFERENCE MALTAAs a tourist destination As a religious site As an event location As a faith pole All of the above 9. People p People are from all the stakeholders involved: Authorities religious and political, tourism stakeholders, support entities, the local society , yPeople: Facilitate the visit and the Facilitate experience Assist the veneration an the worship Perfrom the relevant religious services P id th required services Provide the i d i 2013 ATLAS RELIGIOUS TOURISM CONFERENCE MALTA 10. Promotion activities (examples) PRODUCT Creation of pilgrimage tours PLACE: Collaboration with authorities and t i th iti d tourism professionals PRICE: Collaboration with tour operators & travel agents PROMOTION: Exhibitions Specialized p promotional material Internet promotion PEOPLE: Special Diocese Liaisons Permission for joint religious services2013 ATLAS RELIGIOUS TOURISM CONFERENCE MALTA CHRISTOS PETREAS 2010 11. INDICATIVE ITINERARIES* Typical Non typical2013 ATLAS RELIGIOUS TOURISM CONFERENCE MALTA*exodos travel & congress (c) 2012 12. The relationship of the stakeholders h t ll happens what really hVisitor permits / visas Road network Overall accessibility Signage Transport Overall promotionLocal accessibility L l ibili Information / promotion Facilitation of visitors THE RELIGIOUS OBJECTIVEVisitation hours Visit organization Visitable areas Dress code Protection / maintenance Visit guidance Saleable items / souvenirs2013 ATLAS RELIGIOUS TOURISM CONFERENCE MALTA CHRISTOS PETREAS 2013 13. The Methodology or how to do it gy a. Joint collaboration of stakeholders b. Field research Questionnaire to travel agents c. Field research Questionnaire to visitors d. Strategic partnerships e. P Promotional activities ti l ti iti 2013 ATLAS RELIGIOUS TOURISM CONFERENCE MALTA COPYRIGHT CHRISTOS PETREAS 2013 14. The collaboration areas collaboration Product information (religious and non religious) non-religious) Market information (what the customer wants) Facilitation of the visit itself (access, authorities, regulations, time schedules, etc.) etc ) Obtaining the blessing the spiritual element Overall enhancement of the package 4 dimensions: Religious Cultural, Historic, Environmental Religious, Cultural HistoricThank You2013 ATLAS RELIGIOUS TOURISM CONFERENCE MALTA CHRISTOS PETREAS 2013

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