What will be the biggest challenges for DMOs in the coming weeks and months ?

April 8, 2020

In a focused session, our ECM members and partners shared some of their newest insights and data to help us understand what our challenges in the coming weeks will be and how the DMOs can respond in the face of these challenges.

Let’s look back at the main ideas below, and feel free to (re)watch the webinar recording at the bottom of the page!


Guest speakers:

  • A Business Continuation Framework for DMOs – By Peter Jordan, Head of Strategy, Toposophy

Peter Jordan gave TOPOSOPHY’s take on the current crisis with some food for thought for the months ahead. He also revealed a quick preview of findings from TOPOSOPHY’s upcoming ECM guide around the Covid-19 crisis for DMOs and their partners. These will focus on actions that DMOs should be implementing now in order to best serve their local residents and business community.


    • Europe is currently in the first phase of the crisis, out of three : response, renewal, resilience.
    • Governments might go back and forth with lockdown and restrictions a few times before they consider themselves truly out of the woods.
    • DMO are perfectly positioned to support and engage their local community because they can use their influence and authority, through their developed communication channels and networks and they embody the identity of the destination. So let’s play on this strength !


  • Local advocacy and innovation – By Andrea Jovell, Head of Marketing & Communications, Göteborg & co

Andrea presented Göteborg&CO’s new initiative “För ditt Göteborg” (translated: For Your Gothenburg) that collects and promotes examples of how to support local businesses in these extraordinary times. Andrea also introduced us to some of the other initiatives the DMO has been involved with to support and help their local community get through the crisis.


    • Gothenburg organised a Hackathon on April 3-6 to find solutions to face the crisis.
    • The city is focusing on three main topics: saving lives, saving communities and saving businesses. To do that, they promote examples to support local shops and businesses in safe ways: order takeaway, plan staycation… They also communicate on the value of the local industry for the destination as a whole on all their channels (Social Media, website, Media, etc)


  • Covid19 Travel Impact: Forecast and DashboardBy Ted Sullivan, Vice President Destination Analytics and Andria Godfrey, Senior Director, Customer Success Tourism & Hospitality, ADARA

Adara presented the dashboard they have developed for European Travel Commission and European Cities Marketing. The dashboard presents up-to-date data on Covid19 impact on travel in Europe, including a forecast on what is to be expected in the coming up to 20 weeks.


    • Since the beginning of April, the DMOs are really starting to embrace the reality of having to adapt and improve : they are changing their organisational structure, diversify how they are funded and using new KPIs and measurement to face the new world we are living in.
    • Even when the pandemic started, people were still looking to make travel plans so this can be an opportunity : when things start to look better, we can expect searches and bookings to go up.
    • The data show that when people will be able to travel again, they will first book domestic travels, rather than go outside their country because it will be easier to access (car, train…).
    • If we look at searches from American people who want to go to Europe, the length of stay increased by 25 to 30% because many people are not using their vacation time now so when they will finally be able to, they plan on staying longer.
    • Searches and bookings for any kind of tourism are very low at the moment, whether it be within Europe, or outside but we can expect an improvement from the first week of June.



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