The Digital Communication Plan for Tourism – Part IV: Objectives and Messages

Business achievement goal and objective target concept. By formatoriginal

Communication objectives can include brand affirmation, product promotion, sales increase, highlighting specific experiences, conveying particular aspects, announcing news, promoting specific events in the area, and so on.

Defining objectives is one of the key stages in any communication and marketing plan. Setting objectives provides an idea of where the organization is heading and allows for any necessary adjustments and modifications to the communication strategy if there is a deviation during the process.

The definition of objectives should follow the SMART criteria [CMI, 2014]:

  • Specific: Clearly defined and easy to understand.
  • Measurable: Objectives can be quantitatively or qualitatively measured.
  • Achievable: Objectives should be challenging but not impossible, based on available resources and capabilities.
  • Relevant: Objectives defined in the plan should be important for the organization, strategically relevant, and aligned with other relevant objectives.
  • Time-related: Objectives should have a timeframe for achievement and specific deadlines for assessing goal attainment.

To distribute the objectives consistently with the different stages of the tourist’s customer journey, it is essential to use the funnel [, 2016], [, 2020] mentioned in a previous post:

  1. Exposure
  2. Discovery
  3. Consideration
  4. Conversion
  5. Customer relationship
  6. Retention

This model provides a framework for potential communication objectives. For example, the first objective to achieve in a new market or with a new audience is brand awareness, which is accomplished through exposure. It is important to guide tourists along their customer journey without excessively pushing for a purchase action, as it would not be an effective strategy.

Examples of objectives may include:

  • Creating or increasing brand awareness
  • Building or increasing brand credibility/trust
  • Improving or modifying brand positioning
  • Educating and preparing the audience
  • Increasing market share
  • Launching a new product
  • Introducing the destination in new markets (local or international)
  • Improving return on investment (ROI)
  • Optimizing different levels of the funnel (e.g., generating new leads)
  • Attracting new tourists
  • Fostering loyalty among current tourists
  • Increasing arrivals/visits
  • Increasing sales/revenue
  • Enhancing conversions
  • Increasing customer loyalty
  • Boosting engagement (online audience involvement)

Objectives can (and should) be subdivided by offers, target audience, markets, seasons, etc.

To achieve the objectives set during planning, communication relies on messages, which are a structured form of communication that convey the objectives, highlighting attributes and benefits. Messages are divided into primary and secondary messages based on content priority.

In communication, it is important, even with multiple objectives to be achieved, to focus on one element at a time for the sake of clarity, uniqueness, and ease of reception by the recipient.

In the following sections, we will continue with the main areas of the digital communication plan for tourism and address basic strategic questions.

Click here for Part I ; Click here for Part II ; Click here for part III


  • [CMI, 2014] CMI (Chartered Management Institute), “Setting SMART Objectives Checklist 231” November 2014 visualizzato il 13/08/2021
  • [ , 2016], Matt Banner “Today’s Digital Marketing Funnel (and How to Optimize Your Conversions)” 22 march 2016, ; retrieved 22.05.2023
  • [, 2020], Rock Content Writer, 31 march 2020 “Digital Marketing funnel: what is, how to create one and what type of content work in each stage” ; retrieved 22.05.2023
  • [Rossi A., 2022] Andrea Rossi “Comunicazione Digitale per il Turismo”, Amazon KDP, 2022

#DigitalCommunication #TourismMarketing #CommunicationStrategy #BrandAwareness #MarketingObjectives #CustomerJourney #FunnelMarketing #BrandCredibility #BrandPositioning #TargetAudience #MarketSegmentation #ROI #OnlineEngagement #CustomerRetention #TravelIndustry #DestinationMarketing

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