Now is the time for digital reinvention in tourism regions

First published on June 18, 2015
Last updated on May 23, 2023
CEO, Liz Ward speaks on the benefits of online digital platforms for small tourism businesses at a conference in Vietnam.

Now is the time for digital reinvention in tourism regions

Managing Director of Digital Coaching International, Liz Ward, has presented tourism leaders in Vietnam this week with new ideas on how their regions can take advantage of the online world.

With 20 years experience in e tourism strategy and digital innovation and having lead the Australian Tourism Data Warehouse (ATDW) for over 10 years, the Mekong Tourism Forum invited Liz to their annual industry and government conference to share her knowledge on e Tourism.
Like so many regions across the world, the areas of the Mekong are populated with mostly small businesses offering unique and wonderful traveler experiences, but they are struggling to keep up with technology.

In Australia, the tourism industry is 50% less IT savvy than the average business owner and the gap between tech-savvy travellers and digitally ready operators is still growing, resulting in missed opportunities for the industry as a whole.

80% of travellers use the Internet to plan their holiday, but only 40% of tourism operators have optimised their websites for search and Australia is more advanced than other countries in terms of their digital industry programs.

For example, Australia is unique in having developed the national ATDW content distribution platform.

Liz explained to the audience that it’s urgent and important for regional tourism boards to reinvent their purpose and roles with digital at the heart of their strategies and that industry digital capability is critical to destination success in today’s market place.

There is wonderful opportunity today for regional tourism leaders to start with a blank sheet of paper and write their strategy from the ground up. Enabling every tourism operator with the knowledge and tools to attract, convert and engage their ideal guest will bring far more benefit in today’s world than taking a top-down approach. Yes the regional tourism boards need to provide leadership, but this should be facilitative, with focus on content co-ordination, commercial partnerships, analytics and very importantly, industry education on how to market and sell their products using digital tools, said Liz Ward.

It’s this philosophy that has lead Liz and her business partner, Fabienne Wintle who is regarded as Australia’s best small business digital coach, to develop global online learning hub, Tourism Tribe. uniquely combines support, digital coaching and 64 online tutorials so that people who are in the business of tourism can access knowledge and support online and can share their learnings and experience, in one place. Tourism Tribe is open to the world for people who like to learn, teach and share.

For more information contact Digital Coaching International +61 419 578 200 or

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