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Impact of Socio-Demographic Factors and Marketing Strategies on Tourism Industry in India


Dr. Vaishali Goel* and Ms. Bhavna Jaiswal** "My favorite thing is to go where I have never gone." Diane Arbus In the era of globalization tourism industry in India have played active role in service industry. The overwhelming success of international and domestic tourism has given rise to the need of different marketing strategies to gain the competitive advantage, to survive and sustain in the dynamic environment. This paper seeks to provide insights into how socio-demographic factors can complement tourism industry and how various marketing strategies help them to retain the customers. The findings of empirical study shows that middle age, highly educated, business and service class, males and even married couples frequently avail the services of tourism industry and suggests various marketing strategies which can help them in future to convert challenges into opportunities. Introduction Tourism sector is becominfg the most powerful griowrth engine in the new millenieum. Tourism involves traveling to relatively undisturbed or uncontaminated natural areas with the specific objects of studying, admiring and enjoying the scenery and its wild flora and fauna, as well as other existing cultural and historical aspects. These include places of archeological and historical importance, pilgrimage centres, sanctuaries, national parks, hill resorts and sea beaches, etc. Tourism is traveling for predominantly recreational, leisure purposes, or the provision of services to support this leisure travel. The World Tourism Organization defines tourists as people who "travel to and stay in places outside their usual environment for not more than one consecutive year for leisure, business and other purposes not related to the exercise of an activity remunerated from within the place visited". Tourism has become a popular global leisure activity. Tourism is vital for countries due to the large intake of money for businesses with their goods and services and the opportunity for employment in the service industries associated with tourism. These service industries include transportation services such as cruise ships and taxis, accommodation such as hotels and entertainment venues, and other hospitality industry services such as resorts. Objectives To identify the motivators of tourism To study the relationship between the socio-demographic factors of tourists and their preferences towards tours. Towards the end of objectives 100 sample tourists were selected randomly who were located in Uttar Pradesh. The sample tourists were administered with a pre designed schedule and relevant data were collected through direct interview method. The data was classified and analysed with the help of statistical tools like simple percentages, frequency distribution and coefficient of co-relation. 1. 2.

No. of Tourists Between Different Age Groups

20% 42% 25-35 36-45 Above-45 38%

Table 1: Distribution of sample units by age Age (in years) 25-35 36-45 Above-45 Total No. of sample tourists 42 38 20 100

*Sr. Lecturer, MIET, Meerut **Sr. Lecturer, BIT, Meerut

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Table 2: Distribution of sample units by education Education UG PG Total Number of sample tourists 48 52 100
No. of Tourists Between Different Education Groups

48% 52%

UG PG

Sex Male Female Total

Table 3: Distribution of sample units by sex Number of sample tourists 68 32 100


Number of Tourists On The Bases of Sex

32% Male Female 68%

Table 4: Distribution of sample units by occupation Occupation Number of sample tourists Businessman 48 Employee 48 Housewife 04 Total 100
Number of Tourists On the Bases of occupation

4% 48% 48% Businessman Employee Housewife

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Table 5: Distribution of sample units by Social Status Social Status Number of sample tourists Percent OC 33 66.0 BC 17 34.0 Total 50 100
Number of TouristsOn The Bases of Social Status

34% OC BC 66%

Table 6: Distribution of sample units by nature of Motivators to tourism S.No. 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. Motivators of Tourism Increase in income Leisure Propensity to Pleasure More occasions for Social Gathering Influence of Western Culture Promotion in Employment Cost effective transport system Time saving transport system
Increase in income

Perception of tourists Yes No 88 12 96 4 100 0 76 24 30 70 44 56 82 18 100 0

Total 100 100 100 100 100 100 100 100

12% Motivators Non-Motivators 88%

Leisure

4% Motivators Non-Motivators 96%

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Propensity to Pleasure

0% Motivators Non-Motivators 100%

More occasions for Social Gathering

24% Motivators Non-Motivators 76%

Influence of Western Culture

30% Motivators Non-Motivators 70%

Promotion in Employment

44% 56%

Motivators Non-Motivators

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Cost effective transport system

18% Motivators Non-Motivators 82%

Time saving transport system

0% Motivators Non-Motivators 100%

Table 7: The perceptions of tourists towards tours with reference to age Perception towards packages tours NO YES TOTAL
Chi-sq=19.955(a)

NOS % NOS % NOS %

25-35Yrs 4 19.0% 17 81.0% 21 100%

Perception of tourists 36-45Yrs Above 45 Yrs 14 73.7% 5 2 26.2% 100% 19 10 100% 100%

Total 18 36.0% 32 64.0% 50 100%

Findings The major findings of the study are given below: 1. The distribution of sample units by age shows that a majority of sample tourists (80%) belong to the age of less than 45 years (refer table1). 2. The distribution of sample units by educational status explains that the sample base is predominant with educational status of post graduation level (refer table-2). 3. The gender wise distribution of sample units reveals that the number of male tourists exceeds the female sample tourists (refer table-3) 4. The occupation of sample units is largely distributed between business (48%) and employees (48%) (refer table-4) 5. The distribution of sample units by social status demonstrates that a majority of sample tourists belong to forward community (66%) followed by sample units who belong to backward community (34%) (refer table-5) 6. An analysis of motivators of tourism indicates that the propensity to pleasure and time saving transport system have been found to be the most driving motivator of tourism (110%) followed by leisure (96%) and increase in income (88%) on the order. The least influencing motivators of tourism have been found to be the influence of western culture and promotion in employment (refer table-6)
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The rejection of null hypothesis (level of significance =5 percent and with df=2) about the cross relationship between age and preference towards tours indicates that these two variables are said to be statistically dependent variables (refer table-7) 8. The relationship between educational status and preferences towards tours is said to be statistically dependent variables. 9. A study of the cross relationship between sex of tourists, their preferences towards tours and testing the null hypothesis that these two variables are statistically independent (level of significance=5 percent and df=1) reveals that the null hypothesis is rejected. It implies that the age of tourists influence their preferences towards tours. 10. The rejection of null hypothesis (level of significance =5percent and df=1) with regards to the relationship between the variable namely occupational status of the tourists and their preferences towards tours, establishes the fact that these two variables are statistically dependent. 11. The relationship between the social status of tourists and their preference towards tours and tests of the null hypothesis has proved that these two variables are statistically independent. 12. The coefficient of correlation has been estimated and found it to be significant at 0.01 level (2- tailed) between preferences towards tours and educational status (0.447), sex (0.514), and occupational status (0.443) of tourists respectively. Marketing Strategies: As tourism is a highly compettive industry; the traveler has a wide range of choices and looks for good value for money. The lack of quality infrastructure, uncompetitive rates, indifferent or poor product quality, difficulty in getting access to information on travel and tourist destinations, untrained service providers have an enormously negative effect on the competitiveness of the tourism product. For all these it is necessary for tourism industry to formulate marketing strategies which should include the overall business objectives, an assessment of the market environment; a business/community profile market identification (segmentation), the marketing objectives for each segment; the best combination of the 4 Ps (product, price, place, promotion) for each segment; an implementation plan the marketing budget and a method for evaluation and change. Some of the strategies that tourism industry adopts are: 1. Procurement: Tourism sector needs to understand how procurement decisions are made. This includes identifying what types of tour operators, tour agents and guides are required and when and how companies can access procurement opportunities, how to gather procurement data developing and open procurement process. Skilled Man Power: Tourism has taken initiative to markets beyond the metros to foster skilled manpower. The rapidly growing tourism sector in India is faced with an acute shortage of talent. Hence, tourism sector is focused at developing talent by grooming entry-level candidates and enhancing skills of existing professionals. For this, they provide training to the manpower related to both tourism and non tourism sector. Product Differentiation: Services are sold both as final service product and as intermediate inputs. It is the major differentiating factor for the tourism. Since a tourist are spending lot of money for leisure so they are interested to gain benefit from the service they are getting thus it becomes necessary for the tourism industry to differentiate its service from the others. Informational forums and educational workshops will help identify market-ready or near market-ready products. In the long term, it is necessary for the tourism industry to develop new product. This does not mean that tourist industry will have to abandon their current programs, but it will require them to continually improve their existing programs and introduce new programming or organize new events to draw tourists. Decisions on what facilities, programs and services to provide should be based on the needs and desires of the target market(s). They should not be based on the preferences of the owner/manager or necessarily on what the competition is providing. Recognize that a tourism experience includes five elements: trip planning and anticipation; travel to the site/area; the experience at the site; travel back home; and recollection. Businesses should look for ways to enhance the quality of the overall experience during all phases of the trip. This could be accomplished by providing trip-planning packages, which include maps, attractions on route and on site, and information regarding lodging, food and quality souvenirs and mementos. Tourism businesses should also view their service/product in generic terms. Thinking

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of products/services in this manner helps focus more attention on the experiences desired by customers and also the facilities, programs and services that will produce those experiences. Strengthen distribution: Distribution is the key to the quality of service. Tourism had made great progress in the distribution of services. Strengthen distribution provide comprehensive services and the solution to the customers. Proper Communication: Communication internal and external must be far-reaching and speedy. Good communication is vital in tourism. Tourism can retain existing customers, attract new customer, increase brand awareness, built business, reduce their perceived risk and gain the trust of their customers through promotional campaigns. The marketers should promote by means of appropriate media (radio, television, print) aimed at specific markets. They need to develop and maintain websites specific to tourism. Follow-ups and Feedbacks: Follow-up and feedback should be taken care in the tourism sector and with the growing competition; the customer satisfaction should be given utmost priority. After execution of service, the service providers (tourism industry) should attain the feedback of the service he has rendered so that any improvement required in the future can be attended too. Create a coordinating body for tourism development: Many times stakeholders are unclear as to who is, or should be, responsible for tourism development. A number of stakeholders feel the state government should take the lead; some feel responsibility for tourism development should be left to Indian government; others feel it should be a shared effort. The lack of a defined coordinating body inhibits information sharing and development. It is necessary that there should be a support that involves the variety of stakeholders in the development of tourism within a state. In order to create a heritage for tourism, a defined body is required to oversee marketing and development, which should include the professional and community-based cultural community, education, tourism and nontourism business sectors. Interaction between tourism and non-tourism business sectors: Currently, there is limited formal interaction, understanding and appreciation among the tourism and non-tourism business sectors like transportation (airlines, railways and roadways), hotels and restaurants. In addition, tourism industries are not aware of the funding, services and other resources available to them. Forums or educational/ informational sessions are needed to assist in developing better understanding. Enhance local awareness of offerings: The majority of tourists to India are visiting friends or relatives who live here. The local population has an important role to play in ensuring the events, facilities and attractions in the country that are promoted to these tourists. Currently, there is a perception amongst stakeholders that residents lack awareness or have negative perceptions of what is available in the country. One aspect of the tourism marketing campaign should be aimed at enhancing pride, appreciation and awareness of Indias cultural offerings, locally, in order to ensure residents participate in promoting Indian attributes to visitors. Develop new partnerships and packages for tourism: Increased understanding will generate appreciation and interest in collaborative activity that can benefit all parties involved. Partnerships should be encouraged between hoteliers, restaurants, retailers and cultural groups. New packages such as museum tours coupled with meals at local establishments, theatre packages with accommodations/meals and a package of festival tickets are just some of the possibilities. Conduct research specific to the tourism sector: Research should include quantitative information such as attendance, origin of respondents, spending patterns and demographics, as well as qualitative information such as visitor satisfaction, accessibility and programming desires. This results in assisting the development of presentations that can be made to non-tourism sectors. In addition, it results in informed decision-making on operating, program and capital funding, infrastructure improvements and tourism initiatives to grow. Enhance funding for tourism development: With the evolution of the tourism strategy, there is an opportunity to diversify and expand funding. Though it is not easy to determine how much new funding might be needed in the long term, however, the majority of stakeholders feels strongly that infrastructure and tourism marketing require more stable and sustained funding in the future. Location and Accessibility: Too many tourism businesses and communities fail to recognize their role in improving travel to and from their areas. They focus instead on servicing the customer once they arrive at the site/community. A bad experience getting to or leaving a tourism site can adversely affect a person's travel experience. Ways to help prevent this include:
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(1) Providing directions and maps; (2) Providing estimates of travel time and distances from different market areas; (3) recommending direct and scenic travel routes; (4) Identifying attractions and support facilities along different travel routes; and (5) informing potential customers of alternative travel methods to the area such as airlines and railroads. Potential businesses should also carefully assess alternative locations for: (1) Distance and accessibility to target markets; (2) Location of competitors with respect to target markets; (3) Modes of travel serving the area; and (4) Other attractions and activities that might induce travel to the area. 14. Pricing: When setting prices it is important to take into consideration all of the following: (1) Business and target market objectives; (2) The full cost of producing, delivering and promoting the product; (3) The willingness of the target market to pay for the service (4) Prices charged by competitors offering a similar product/service to the same target market(s); (5) The availability and prices of substitute products/services (for example, campgrounds, motels, and bed and breakfast are all substitutes for lodging); (6) The possibility of stimulating high profit products/services (such as boats) by offering related services (such as maintenance) at or below cost. When establishing prices, tourism businesses should give attention to pricing strategies which may encourage off season and non-peak period sales, longer stays, group business, and the sale of package plans (combination of room, meals, and recreational facilities). 15. Quality Control: A quality control program which focuses on improving both the technical quality (the standards associated with what the customer receives) and the functional quality (the standards associated with how the customer receives the service) should be carried on from time to time. Conclusion There is a wide scope for underdeveloped countries like India to promote tourism. If India overcomes the challenges by enriching its present strategies, it will emerge as a best tourist spot and will yield maximum foreign exchange to our country. A world-class destination requires professional planning to prevent haphazard, uncontrolled growth, strict architectural controls, and infrastructure. It requires improvement of entry points and appropriate facilitation services. It is necessary that India should balance between security considerations and the need for tourism development. Training programmes are required not only for hotel managers but also for tourist guides, taxi-drivers, staff at eating places, porters etc., as the manner in which they conduct themselves affects the tourists experience of the country. Important dos and donts in terms of a code of ethics need to be inculcated among the service providers. So as to conclude the marketing mantra for the Department of Tourism is to position India as a global brand to take advantage of the burgeoning global travel and trade and the vast untapped potential of India as a destination.

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