North Devon 2020 AGM & Networking Event

North Devon AGM & Business Networking Day – January 2020

A great day hosted by the North Devon Marketing Bureau and 365 Media

Chairman David Barker takes over from Nick White, who has been chairman of the bureau since December 2016. Mr White will continue to be an adviser to the board, which is made up of businessmen from across North Devon, Torridge and Exmoor.

The event included a segment about the ‘Realities of Tourism in a Competitive World‘ by Dr Rebecca Hawkins from The Oxford School of Hospitality Management.

Her lecture highlighted the rise of the “experience economy“.

There is a growing trend for consumers to spend more of their disposable income on experiences rather than on material goods.

She also focused on a travel industry that is becoming more environmentally aware but where consumer’s primary buying considerations were still driven by price and the desire to explore a place, and find a ‘genuinely memorable experience’.

Her case studies involved destinations where the tourism was shaped by the communities who lived there and that in order for a sustainable tourism economy to be realised, it matters that a destination creates a market for travellers who ‘fit with the residents’ and ‘ensuring residents feel supported’ to get the most value for both tourists and community alike.

Key Statements 

"If you value your tourism,
love it and show you love it."
Dr Rebecca Hawkins
Research and Consultancy Fellow in Hospitality

Other takeaways from the day included useful SEO tips for tourism websites and managing social media plus guest review responses and reputation management

Business Networking

Spreading the word about Lynton & Lynmouth.

As a leaflet exchange it was a non-event, but it was a great networking opportunity. We spent most of the day chatting with other exhibitors; National Trust, Clovelly, Dartington Crystal.  It was great to see Brian Kath from Visit Combe Martin, Rachel from Woolacombe & Mortehoe Tourist Information.

Most of the businesses and experiences we chatted with will be coming to the Tourism Exchange in the Lynton Town Hall on March 25th, 2020.