Giving Canada's tourism industry a competitive edge
As Canada's national tourism marketing organization, Destination Canada leads the way in keeping Canada's tourism industry ahead of the pack, working with our partners to inspire visitors around the world to explore Canada.
We rely on Canada's small - and medium-size tourism enterprises (SMEs) to deliver on our brand promise. Our resources provide support to help transform their tourism products into the extraordinary experiences that will keep visitors coming back for more.
Our marketing and sales activities are built on the best tourism research and intelligence in the business.
Our reporting covers big-picture issues. Want to know which international markets are showing the greatest growth and why? We've got it covered. What are the long-term trends affecting Canadian tourism today? We've got the answers. What emerging markets show promise for Canadian tourism operators? We let you know.
In addition to global market research, we support SMEs in making better business, marketing and investment decisions. Our timely and relevant intelligence can help these businesses better target travellers, identify tourism business opportunities, take advantage of current travel trends and understand economic indicators that have a direct impact.
Travellers are being deluged with offers and deals from every corner of the globe. So how do we give Canada's tourism industry a competitive edge? The more we learn about travellers—their values, interests and motivations for travel—the better we can market travel experiences to them.
That's why Destination Canada has gone beyond traditional market research to find out exactly why people travel and why different types of travellers seek out entirely different travel experiences. The result is the innovative Explorer Quotient®(EQ). It defines traveller types based on their values and motivations. It's helping tourism-focused businesses, large and small, find and keep their best customers.
As Canada's national tourism marketing organization, we inspire visitors to explore the extraordinary travel experiences our country has to offer. So how does Destination Canada ensure Canada’s experiences can compete internationally?
Our Experiences team works with partners large and small to identify travel experiences that bring Canada's tourism brand to life. We look for experiences that travellers dream about.
Our guiding principle is simple: A product is something you buy. An experience is something you remember.
It's not about simply paying for kayaking or visiting an attraction. We share travel experiences that engage all the senses, such as watching polar bears from the window of a Tundra Buggy in Manitoba, shucking oysters on Prince Edward Island or whooping it up, Acadian-style, at a summer kitchen party.
Another way we differentiate from our competitors is via the Canadian Signature Experiences (CSE) program, which highlights the travel experiences that exemplify Canada’s brand—experiences that are memorable, authentic and engage targeted international travellers with our people, geography and culture. The program helps to shift travellers’ perceptions about Canada so that they see us as a unique destination with more to offer than they imagined. CSE members form the priority pool from which Destination Canada chooses content for advertising campaigns. While CSE aims to improve Canada’s brand perceptions as a whole, there are spin-off benefits for members. Tourism business operators in Canada have good incentives—and support—to evolve their product, further improving the customer experience.
Our media and sales initiatives take Canada's most evocative travel experiences, animate them through Canada's tourism brand and share them with the world.
We market to the media, travel trade and consumers in 12 countries. That might mean inviting German media on a cross-Canada tour, or directing Australian ski fanatics to a website devoted to their mountain passion. We might be beaming images of “wow” experiences on the side of a London building, or selling Canada at a huge travel-trade show in Japan. It's all designed to give Canada a distinct and powerful global presence.
Bringing Canada's tourism brand to life also means harnessing the power of the Internet, wireless and web technologies plus emerging media. Our global marketing platform is the destination for travellers looking for inspiration, travel experiences, events, videos, travel packages and more.
Our integrated global campaign blends the traditional with the new, using Bluetooth technology to beam willing consumers short video clips. We're also incorporating user-generated video content—15 seconds of "wow" experiences that give the world access to fascinating and funny video episodes, travel blogs and first-hand accounts of visits to Canadian destinations.
Social media plays a significant part in our work, too. We have strong and growing communities of advocates across key social platforms including Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Instagram, Pinterest and Tumblr. If people aren't posting on Facebook or YouTube, they're merrily tweeting or engaging others in some other way, and Destination Canada is part of these conversations.
The travel trade can also enjoy interactive sales tools as they become certified Canada Specialists. Meeting and convention planners can get expert advice online about world-class Canadian destinations at our Business Events Canada website.
We don't just market Canada; we measure and evaluate Destination Canada programs, as well as the strength of the Canadian tourism industry, using sophisticated tools, indicators and performance measures.
Are visitor arrivals up or down in our 10 leisure markets? How much money did our partners contribute to Destination Canada marketing programs in 2014? How much revenue did our marketing programs help to inject into Canada’s tourism economy?
Total tourism revenue: $88.7 billion, up 5% over 2013
Tourism export revenue: $17.3 billion, up 5% over 2013
Tourism's share of Canada’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP): 2%
Canadian jobs in the tourism industry: 627,000
Increase in the number of arrivals to Canada from Destination Canada’s 10 leisure markets: 10%
Destination Canada results
- Overall, Destination Canada’s 2014 measured marketing activities:
- Generated 432,000 travellers through our consumer marketing and travel-trade partnerships
- Generated an estimated $667 million in tourism export revenue through our marketing efforts
- Generated $258 million in revenue by Business Events Canada by attracting meetings, conventions and business travel to Canada
- Generated an estimated $122 million in federal tax revenue
- Supported 7,500 Canadian jobs.