Breaking the Green Washing Chain

The travel and tourism industry is multi-faceted and involves different stakeholders. For the industry to run successfully or achieve sustainable tourism development, a sound communication strategy is vital. Marketing and communication of responsible tourism products, services, and practices help tour operators stand out as responsible tourism enterprises. This heightens the tour operators’ chances of attracting conscious travelers as their clients.

On 18th and19th January 2022, Ecotourism Kenya hosted a free online communications and marketing training for tour operators. The online training was fully sponsored by the EU-funded GreenTour Kenya project. The objective of the training was to assist them to have a clear understanding of their role in promoting responsible tourism and why it’s important to communicate their sustainability commitment. The session leaders were Lisa Scriven and Emilie Hagedoorn, both of whom are seasoned sustainable tourism experts working at Utopia Africa and Green Heart Tourism respectively. Approximately 65 participants representing 53 tour companies attended the vibrant 2-day training.

Sustainable tourism communication and marketing can be used to dispel misconceptions and misguided information obtained from other sources and create new demand and diversified choices for responsible travelers. Effective communication also improves the linkage between community-based tourism and mainstream tour operations. Last but not least, communication deepens and enriches the visitor’s experiences. Feedback from visitors, whether positive or negative, helps in identifying gaps for improvement and areas of excellence.

The main training segments covered during the sustainable tourism marketing and communication training included:

  • Market demand and opportunities for tour operators
  • Engaging with today’s traveler and the tour operators’ supply chain
  • The reasons to talk about sustainability commitment
  • Tips on what to include in the communication strategy
  • The opportune times to communicate sustainability practice
  • Areas to include sustainability to communicate quality

We are happy to be hosting training that helps to influence positive transformation within the Kenyan tourism industry and beyond. We endeavor to achieve a portfolio of responsible tour operators who not only avoid greenwashing but also proudly communicate their responsible tourism practices without green hushing.

Stay tuned for other training opportunities such as this on our social media channels.

 

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