Maldives Marketing & Public Relations Corporation (MMPRC) in association with Pacific Asia Travel Association (PATA) and world's largest travel platform Tripadvisor, hosted a webinar yesterday. The webinar titled "React, Rethink, Recover: Destination Management Solutions to the COVID-19 Crisis" had more than 300 Maldives tourism marketeers participants.
Starting the webinar Mr. Thoyyib Mohamed, Managing Director of MMPRC said, "The disruption it has caused to all of us in all aspects of life as we know it is incomparable. No industry has been hit as head as the global travel industry which has come to an almost absolute stand still"
The webinar led by Mr. Damian Cook, CEO of E-Tourism Frontiers, has given valuable insights on practical strategies that can be implemented during the crisis and how destinations can navigate through the pandemic. Furthermore, Mr. Cook, who had previous experiences managing global crises including the SARS and Ebola, revealed that there are three phases of a crisis, reacting to the situation, rethinking the current strategies and implementing the recovery process.
"Business and travellers themselves are going to make choices on where they are going to travel. And they will prioritize those destinations that have a plan in place and that have clearly showed that then from now that they are recovery ready" said Mr. Damian Cook.
Additionally, Mr. Thoyyib Mohamed, Managing Director of MMPRC, Dr. Mario Hardy, CEO of PATA, Ms. Sarah Mathews, Head of Destination Marketing of TripAdvisor, and Mr. Leon Chan, Business Development Manager APAC, TripAdvisor were part of the penalist. They shared examples on how they have reacted in terms of changing their strategies and marketing activities in addition to the advice and statistics. Facilitator of the webinar Mr. Paul Pruangkarn, Communication & External Affairs Director of PATA, also gave the opportunity to ask questions to the key speakers at the end of the session.
Ms. Sarah Mathews, Head of Destination Marketing of TripAdvisor highlighted the importance of marketing in digital platforms, "Your contact, your stories, are not online in this particular point, who might have a potential to miss that share of warning further down the line".
MMPRC has changed and adapted to new strategies in order to increase the presence of Maldives globally in digital platforms and appreciates the efforts of the stakeholders in developing the webinar and marketing collaborations to make the Maldives visible more than ever.