Reputation can be down to experiences outside your control by Aimee Postle

We’re working on a number of new business opportunities in the leisure and tourism sector at the moment. As part of that, we were fortunate enough to be given the opportunity to spend 24 hours in Cornwall a few weeks’ ago.

It got us thinking, reputation is about what you do, what you say and what others say about you (CIPR definition). But, it is also about what you don’t do and, perhaps somewhat unfairly, the environmental conditions over which you have no control.

For example, the UK has suffered a number of abysmal summers. The weather has been grotty and it has been all round cheaper and more pleasant to holiday abroad. But, not this year according to Positive Weather Solutions.

PWS, which has out-forecast the Met Office a number of times in the last two years (according to the Metro), believes we’re on track for our hottest ever summer on record.

So, as a holiday company in England’s famed holiday county (English Riviera, Newquay and so on), how do you make the weather work in your favour? Not only do you have to persuade potential holidaymakers that your site is the best, but that they should holiday in the UK in the first place.

You may be offering exactly the same level of facilities and service in two concurrent weeks, but if one family experiences rain and the other sunshine, it is your resort which will be credited or blamed with the good or bad holiday. Likewise, if the holidaymaker is stuck in a five hour traffic jam to get to you – it will obviously be your fault and not their journey planning.

And, it is not just the UK. When outdoor enthusiast and Kinetic MD went to Finland back in February, she was joined in the chalet by a woman who was determined to ruin everyone else’s holiday. This woman felt it was the holiday company’s responsibility to give her a good holiday, to ensure the resort was full and to make sure the weather was perfect. She took no personal responsibility for her own experiences.

Our top tips for working with the factors outside of your control:

• Embrace them – find a way to use the situation to your advantage; the bad weather won’t just go away because you ignore it. Perhaps it’s an incentive to develop some new all-weather facilities and entertainment for guests.

• Use them – maybe poor weather isn’t the best choice but can you actually make use of the factor as part of your unique selling point?

• Overcome them – offer something so special that it won’t matter whether the sun is shining or traffic is congested.

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One Response

  1. […] Reputation can be down to experiences outside your control, 23 March 2010 […]

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