Evaluating the Potential of Mobile Technology in Tourism Destination Marketing
Moustafa, Mohamed Ali Yousef
University of Wales
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Tourism destinations face various challenges in the implementation of mtechnologies and although mobile applications are used by some destinations, many are in their early stages of development. Few destinations have yet managed to develop credible mobile services. In particular, small and mediumsized enterprises (SMEs), which are the backbone of the tourism industry, have struggled to embrace new technologies, e.g. e-commerce applications, which has prevented them from benefiting from new technologies. It is unclear which business model will emerge to make mobile services viable. This study aims to explore the way that tourism destinations deal with these issues and will develop a mobile information model integrated with a mobile destination coding system to help tourism stakeholders optimise their exploitation of mtechnologies. This research comprised two phases. Phase one aimed to explore organizations that had implemented m-technologies. It employed a case study methodology utilising a variety of methods (semi-structured interviews, observation and document analysis). Phase two aimed to design a destination mobile information coding system. To achieve this paper prototyping interviews with m-technology and tourism experts were used. Phase one involved two case studies: Innsbruck as a case study for a tourism destination that had already implemented many m-technology applications for visitors; Cardiff Bus and Traveline as organizations that had implemented mtechnologies. Cross-case analysis informed the development of a model for tourism destination stakeholders, particularly SMEs, to encourage better mtechnology practices in tourism destination marketing. It concludes with a model for mobile information provision for tourism destination. The major contribution of this research is Tourism Mobile Information Coding System (TMICS) - a mobile coding information system which aims to provide tourists with destination information through their mobile phones. It is anticipated that the new system will enhance tourism destination stakeholders marketing efforts.
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