Adventure Tours Australia: International Marketing Plan

Executive summary

The marketing plan relates to Adventure Tours Australia which is a travel firm located in Australia. The firm is in the process of venturing into the international market by introducing a new travel package. The new travel product entails touring various destinations in Egypt. A situational analysis is conducted by identifying the company’s background and its mission statement. The firm’s financial and non financial goals are also identified. A SWOT analysis is also conducted by identifying the firm’s strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats. The situational analysis also involves an analysis of the tourism industry and the internal and external factors that will affect the new product. The marketing strategy is also considered by considering various variables such as target market, market segmentation and positioning. Both individual and institutional customers are identified as the target market. A number of variables are considered in segmenting the market. These include behavioural, psychographic and demographic variables. The marketing objectives of introducing the new products are also identified. To effectively launch the new travel package in the market, a number of marketing mix strategies relating to product, price, promotion and distribution are considered. An action plan is also formulated detailing the various activities that will be conducted to ensure that the product is effectively launched. A promotion budget is also formulated estimating the cost that the firm will incur in creating product awareness in the market.

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Situational Analysis

Company description

Adventure Tours Australia is a firm is within the Australian tourism industry. The firm was established in 1993 and has its headquarters located at Norwood, South Australia. The firm is involved with organising nature-based travel for small group active travellers. Active travelling incorporates a number of activities such as ecotourism, adventure and cultural discovery. The firm’s tour operations are conducted within all the regions in Australia. The firm has also established offices in Germany and the United Kingdom. The domestic regions that the firm operates include Victoria, Tasmania, South Australia, North Territory, Queensland, New South Wales and Western Australia. The firm has eight operational bases and has established an extensive network of offices in Australia which enables it to conduct marketing for its services more effectively. It has a human resource base of 230 employees. Annually, the firm serves an average of 100,000 international customers. Over the years, the firm has been able to establish itself as the leading tour and travel firm within the Australian tourism industry. In addition, the firm offers diverse travel products (‘Company profile’ Para. 1-3).

The management of the firm intends to expand its travel packages in relation to tourism by venturing into the international market. In venturing into the international market, the management of the firm integrates both active tourism and passive tourism. Passive tourism refers to tourism that mainly involves leisure with minimum active pursuits. In addition, the management also intends to incorporate soft adventure in its operations within the international market. Passive tourism is closely related to soft adventure. Soft adventure refers to tourism product that mainly entails planning trips to various destinations as a part of new experience, learning about other cultures and natural wonders. Soft adventure involves mild skills but results into high level of psychological satisfaction (Hague Para. 1). The country of destination that the management of the firm has considered is Egypt.

Mission statement

The management of Adventure Tours Australia is committed to ensuring that the customers obtain value for their money. This is by ensuring that it delivers high quality, satisfying and memorable experience to its customers at a customer friendly price.

The management is also committed to ensuring that there is a good relationship between the firm, its employees and its business associates.

Goals

Financial goals

The management of the firm intends to improve the firm’s financial stability. This will enable it to attain the necessary facilities to deliver its tourism products to the customers more effectively both in the domestic and foreign market. This will enable the firm attain its profit maximising objective.

Non financial goals

The management of the firm is committed to ensuring that it develops customer loyalty. This is through ensuring that all the operations of the firm are focused at satisfying the customer by offering satisfactory travel packages to a wide range of consumer categories. This will be achieved by increasing on its product lines.

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In addition, it is the objective of the management to ensure that the firm operates in a social responsible manner.

The management of the firm is also committed at ensuring that the firm ventures into other tourism product lines.

SWOT analysis

Strengths Weaknesses Opportunities Threats
The firm has a knowledgeable and skilled human capital having been in operation for 16 years. It also has a well formulated training program for its tour guides to ensure maximum service to its customers (‘Adventure Tours Australia Group’ Para. 7). Financial constraints. The firm doesn’t have enough financial capital to purchase all the tourism technologies. Increased rate of globalisation. More countries are opening up their economy allowing foreign firms to invest in their economy. The firm can increase the size of its market share by organising trips to various international tourist destinations (‘Tourism industry trends’ Para. 3). Increased degree of rivalry resulting from an increase in the number of firms entering the industry due to its lucrative nature (Ehmke, Fulton, Akridge, Kathleen & Sally 8).
The firm has the necessary resources necessary to serve the customers effectively. These include professional guides, camping equipments and well equipped travel vehicles. The firm has not penetrated into many countries through foreign direct investment. High probability of increased efficiency of operation as a result of growth in information technology. Growth of information technology has resulted into emergence of electronic commerce which supports the tourism industry (Marcus& Werner 1). Reduction in the consumer’s purchasing power. The current economic crisis has resulted into a shift in consumption pattern. Consumers are emphasising on purchasing the necessities (Master Para. 3).
A well established distribution strategy. The firm has a well established network of offices within Australia. This enables a large number of customers to access its travel packages. The government is encouraging more investment into the tourism industry as a strategy to promote economic growth. Political instability can result into a negative impact in the firms operations since tourism is greatly impacted by the political climate.
The firm offers a wide range of tourism products to active travellers organised into small groups. Competition from already existing firm such as Horizon Travel.

Industry overview

Over the past twenty years, Australian tourism industry has witnessed rampant growth. This has resulted into its contribution towards the country’s economic growth. During 2002-2003 fiscal years, the industry contributed 4.2% to Australia’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP).Currently, the Australian tourism industry is becoming very competitive. More domestic firms are venturing into the international market through provision of travel packages that incorporate adventure into foreign tourism. This has resulted from an increase in consumer demand. Most Australians are incorporating tourism in their lifestyles. This has been as a result of economic growth in Australia (‘Tourism in Australia’ 15).

There is a high probability of the firm succeeding in the Egyptian market by offering tourism package for the active travellers. This is associated with a number of factors.

For instance, Egypt is an effective travel destination for the active travellers. This is due to the fact that there are a lot of things that the active travellers can learn. For instance, Egypt has a deep rooted culture that dates back over a long period of time (Dunn Para. 8).

Egypt has a relatively stable political climate compared to other Middle East countries. This has resulted from the fact that the government has also developed a strategy aimed at ensuring that there is political stability within the country as a strategy of enhancing economic growth. The government has also formulated policies enabling foreign investments to be conducted within the country’s tourism industry. Egypt has a well developed infrastructure that enhances tourism. In addition, to develop the tourism attraction sites located in the desert areas, the government is developing the infrastructure network (‘Privileges of tourism investment in Egypt’ Para. 2-4).

Active travelling in tourism demands a high level of knowledge of the travel destination. This is due to the fact that the travellers demand intense knowledge of various issues related to the travel destination which results into increased level of customer satisfaction. These issues relate to culture, religion, history and biodiversity. For instance, tourists who are engaged in cultural tourism as a part of active tourism demands a high level of enrichment in their mind. To be able to meet these demands, the travel firm must explain the questions of the customers to their satisfaction. Adventure Tours Australia has got professional and knowledgeable tour guides who ensure that their customers are satisfied.

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Marketing Strategy

To successfully introduce a new product to the market; it is important that a comprehensive marketing strategy be developed by considering target market, market segment and positioning. (‘Developing a marketing strategy’ 1).

Target market

In introducing the new travel product package, the management conducted a market research to determine the extent of diversity in customer demands. The management of the firm has targeted both the institutional and individual customers. The institutional customers include firms that organise annual tours for its staff as an employee reward strategy. Institutional customers also include firms that organise travel for its executive management to attend international business conferences. The management has also considered educational institutions such as universities and other tertiary institutions as part of their institutional customers. This is due to the fact that these educational institutions undertake tours aimed at educating the students on various issues. On the other hand, the individual customers targeted include families that have incorporated tourism as a part of their consumption.

Market segmentation

To effectively deliver the new tourism experience based product, the management has incorporated four categories of market segmentation variables. These include demographic, geographic, psychographic and behavioural variables (‘Market segmentation’ Para. 1). The demographic variables considered include the individuals’ level of income, family size, occupation, religion and education. Through consumer market research, the management identified that consumers’ purchasing patterns are greatly influenced by their level of income. In addition, consumers are increasingly changing their lifestyle and appreciating tourism products in their consumption. The educational level is also affecting the choice of tourism destination amongst the consumers. For instance, the management identified that individual consumers with a high level of education are more likely to appreciate travel packages that will result into increased mind enrichment.

The psychographic factors considered include values, interest and attitude. These variables were considered since individual and institutional consumers have different interests, attitudes and values in relation to their social class, personality and lifestyle.

The behavioural variables that have been incorporated in segmenting the market include the nature of the users. The management identified that the individual customers such as families mainly consume tourism products such as travel during special occasions and holidays. On the other hand, institutional customers have well developed plan when they conduct their tours.

To meet the travel demand of the customers, the management has formulated the new travel package to incorporate various geographical regions.

Positioning

Positioning is mainly used in the tourism industry as a communication strategy (Harsha Para. 1).The management of the firm has incorporated an effective positioning strategy for its tourism products. The strategy entails offering high quality experience based travel products for its various tourist destinations that appeal to a wide category of consumers. Positioning is also enhanced by its competitive pricing strategy. This has enabled the firm to create a superior image in the mind of the customers. By incorporating experience based tour products, the management is able to evoke images of superior travel destinations in the mind of the customers. This enables the firm to differentiate the new travel product from the competitors since the customers perceive a high level of satisfaction.

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Marketing objectives

In venturing into the international market through introduction of a new travel product, there are a number of objectives that the management wishes to attain. These include the following.

  • To increase the firm’s sales revenue with a margin of 40% within a period of one year.
  • To increase the firm’s market share with a margin of 25% within a period of one year from the launch of the new tourism product.
  • To increase awareness of the new tourism product and its competitive advantage to both the individual and institutional customers compared to other tourism products. Product awareness campaigns will be conducted both in the domestic and foreign market. Through this, the management intends to increase the size of the firm’s customer base with a margin of 20% within a period of one year.

Marketing mix

To ensure that the product is effectively launched, the management has formulated comprehensive marketing mix strategies.

Product

The new travel package will incorporate both active and passive tourism. This will enable it to appeal to a large number of customers. The package will involve travelling to various tourist attraction sites in Egypt such as those located at Cairo, Alexandria, the Nile River and the temples. In Cairo, the tourist attraction sites to be integrated in the travel package include the Egyptian Museum which has a wide range of antiques and artefacts. In the Egyptian Museum, the customers will be able to tour to all the 107 halls including Tutankhamun Gallery which is the most famous attraction site in Egyptian Museum (Egyptian Museums’ Para. 3-5).

It will also involve touring the various Egyptian pyramids which are located near river Nile. Amongst the pyramids that the management of the firm has incorporated in the travel package include those at Giza and Sphinx which are the most popular. In addition, the travel package will also include touring ‘the valley of the kings’ which has 62 tombs belonging to the Egyptian Pharaohs. In Alexandria, the tourism attraction sites to be considered include Roman Amphitheatre, Pompey’s Pillar, the national museum and Farouk’s palace. The active travel package to these sites will be targeted to both institutional and individual customers.

To incorporate soft adventure, the management of the firm has formulated the package in a way that gives the customers priority to determine the activities that they desire such as sight seeing by cruising in Nile River using canoes, rafting, diving and camel trekking.

Pricing strategy

From a consumer market research conducted, the management of the firm established that consumers are price sensitive and demand utility maximisation (Watson 3). To ensure that the new tourism product is effectively launched in the market, the management of the firm has incorporated a competitive pricing strategy. This is through integrating the penetration pricing strategy (Kyle Para. 1). This will entail setting the price of the travel package at a relatively low price compared to the competing firms. A competitor market research will be conducted to establish the competitors pricing strategy. Penetration pricing strategy will ensure that the firm attracts a large number of customers thus increasing its customer base and hence the level of its sales revenue.

Promotion strategy

Information is a key element within the travel industry. The management has formulated a comprehensive promotion strategy to ensure that there is effective product awareness in the market. Various forms of promotion which include online and off-line forms have been considered. The off-line methods include advertisement, sales promotion, personal selling and public relation. The advertisement mediums that have been incorporated in the promotional strategy include use of radio, television and newspapers. Personal selling will be conducted in creating awareness to institutional customers (Tim Para.1). This will involve oral explanation to the customers the benefits that they can attain by purchasing the tourism product (Grayson & Berry 1). The sales promotion will be conducted by organising competitions in which prizes will be won (‘Sales promotion’ Para. 2). The prize will entail offering free travel to five individuals to various travel destinations in Egypt. Billboards will also be used in creating product awareness. In addition, simple but catchy slogan will be used in communicating the experience of the new travel package to the potential customer. The firm will enter into contract with the best advertisement companies that have their bill boards strategically located. In addition, the firm will also use catalogues and brochures detailing the information related to the new travel package.

To ensure that there is comprehensive product awareness in the international market, the management will also incorporate online advertisement through the current social networking tools in its promotion strategy. The social networking tools to be considered include You Tube, Face book, Wikis and Blogs (Ostrow Para. 1-2). More firms are increasingly integrating blogs in their advertisement (Lerma Para. 3).The firm will post the photographs of the various travel destinations entailed in the new travel package in these social networking sites. These social networking tools will enable the firm to create product awareness to the global market. The Blogs and Wikis will be incorporated in the company’s website. Wikis and Blogs will act as both informative and interactive promotion tools (Werget Para. 7).

Use of YouTube is more cost effective. This is due to the fact that there is no specialised knowledge that is required to post the advertisements on YouTube. All that is required is to design the video clips and log in to Youtube.com where the videos will be posted (Barlis Para. 2-6). In addition, You Tube will enable the firm to reach a large number of potential customers. This is due to the fact that a large number of individuals access You Tube daily. The firm will also form alliance with the major search engines such as Google and Yahoo.

Distribution strategy

Product distribution is a key element in ensuring products and services are efficiently accessed by the consumers (Hudson, Tim, Graham & Paul 148-154). There are various channels of distribution available to the travel industry (Lars Para. 3).The management of the firm has devised an effective distribution strategy to ensure that the product is accessible within the entire market (Pernes Para. 4). This will be achieved by ensuring that the travel package can be purchased in all its sales offices which are established in all Australian regions. In addition, the management has also incorporated the current Business to Customer (B2C) electronic commerce technology to ensure that the package is accessible to a large number of potential customers (‘Online travel sales to boom’ Para. 1-2). This technology will enable the customers to book travel online. In addition, the management has incorporated the use of sales agents.

Action plan

To ensure that the product is effectively launched in the market, there are a number of activities that the management has to consider. These are illustrated in the following Gantt chart.

Activity December January February
Consumer and competitor market research by the marketing department
Training the tour guides on the travel destination
Entering into contract with search engines such as Google and social networking tools such as You Tube (Executive management).
Designing and testing the company’s website by the firm’s information technology department to incorporate the blogs and wikis.

Marketing budget

Various costs are incurred in creating product awareness (Rob &Kent 1).The management has estimated the cost that the firm will incur in creating product awareness. This is illustrated in the table below.

Cost item Cost in A$.
Cost of consumer market research 70,000
Cost of competitor market research 50,000
Cost of promotion
-Television
-Radio
-Newspaper
-Brochures and catalogues
-Sales promotion
-Personal selling
-Bill boards
-You Tube
200,000
150,000
90,000
25,000
110,000
100,000
120,000
20,000
Designing blogs and wikis 100,000
Cost of adding other necessary travel equipments 700,000
Total estimated cost 1,735,000

Monitoring and evaluation

To ensure that the project attains the desired result, the management has formulated a project management team. The team is charged with ensuring that there is no deviation in all the activities pertaining to launching of the new travel package. For instance, the project management team will ensure that the set targets and deadlines are achieved. The management will also evaluate the effectiveness of the new travel product using the sales revenue. It will also consider the growth in the size of the firm’s market share in the domestic and international market.

Works cited

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Ehmke, Cahlo, Fulton, Joan, Akridge, Jay, Kathleen, Erickson and Linton, Sally. “Industry analysis: the five forces.” Indiana: Purdue University. Web.

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Ostrow. Adam. “Social networking still the number one growth area in online marketing.” 2009. Web.

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Rob, Holland and Kent, Wolfes. “Understanding and developing a promotion budget.” Tennessee: The University of Tennessee. 2000. Web.

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Tutor2U. “Promotion: sales promotion.” 2009. Web.

Werget, Tessa. “Wiki advertising that engages.” 2009. Web.

Watson, Terry. “Pricing strategies: a method in the madness.”Norfolk: Norfolk Island Tourism. 2008. Web.

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