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Sinclair and Ruiz is a consultancy that creates integrated local, national and international marketing strategies


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Canadian Travel to Mexico Positioned to Break Record.

We recently had the opportunity to interview Cesar Mendoza, Regional Director for Canada for the Mexican Tourism Board, about growth in the number of Canadians traveling to Mexico. Mendoza said that numbers have been steadily increasing this year, and by the end of the year they expect a record-breaking volume of travelers. That underscores the confidence Canadian travelers have in Mexico as a tourist destination. Cesar also noted the challenges that Mexico faces and the way to overcome them; as well as expected tendencies such as focusing on the segments of culture and traditions of Mexico, to give  Canadian travelers unique experiences that will inspire them. To conclude the interview, he told us what the Mexican Tourism Board expects for 2019.
Santo-Domingo

As background information, it is worth noting that Canada is an important source of visitors to Mexico (datatur), second only to the United States since 2006. Canadians not only travel to beach destinations but flock to cultural festivals, because of the ancestral abundance and their values. Therefore, according to Cesar “Mexico will keep creating/developing experiences to traditional and non-traditional destinations, tailor-made for new generations of travelers such as millennials”.

What are the results for 2018 in terms of numbers, and what do you expect for the end of the season?

According to the latest report from the Mexican Tourism Board, between January-August 2018, Mexico received  12.6 million international visitors by air. That represents a 5% increase over the same period in  2017. During that same period, 1.5 million Canadian visitors traveled to Mexico by air, which is a 15% increase over to 2017. By the end of 2018, for the first time ever, Mexico expects to welcome the arrival of over  2 million Canadian visitors, expecting a final number of 2.2 million, that would represent an increase of almost 12% compared to 2017.

Challenges that Mexico faces for 2019?

There are different factors (negative and positive) that affect the flow of tourists to our country. Among the positive factors that benefit an increase in the flow of Canadians to México is the exchange rate (CAD vs USD), making it more attractive to travel to Mexico than any other destination in the United States. The economic factor of a possible recession causes Canadians to react in advance and postpone or change travel plans.

On the other hand, the immigration rhetoric in the USA has fostered a change in Canadian travel plans for many who now decide to visit Mexico instead. Another factor that affects the tourism industry, are natural disasters like the hurricanes that unfortunately affected some Caribbean islands. That creates a positive flow of travelers to Mexico from Canada and other countries.

The biggest challenge that our country must face for the 2018-2019 season, is the perception of insecurity. Mexico makes very important and significant efforts, to fight groups that negatively affect the country’s image; and at the same time, we work to communicate events and news in the right context. For example, sensationalist notes that do not specify the exact location of negative events, immediately impact reservations to tourist destinations in Mexico.  Canadian travelers are very objective in comparison to US travelers at the moment of making travel decisions. However, negative news affects the image and in most cases, the final destination choice.

What are the predictions and tendencies for travel to Mexico in 2019?

Mexico’s commercial allies, especially airlines and tour operators, continue growing business ties with Mexico.  Our forecast for 2019 shows an increase in the number of seats per plane to Mexico by 10% versus 2018. Recently the Mexican airline Interjet started operations in the Canadian market with flights to Cancun and Mexico City from the main airports in Canada. This has resulted in an increase of an additional 184,000 seats for 2018. The low-cost airline Swoop just announced flights from YHM airport in Hamilton, Ontario to Cancun and Puerto Vallarta starting in January 2019; and on January the 12th they will start operating a flight from YXX in Abbotsford to Puerto Vallarta and on January the 20th to Mazatlán.

In 2019, the Mexican Tourism Board will continue with their strategy of distinguishing beach and sun destinations from others, and highlighting their competitive advantages and emphasizing the value that they offer through the segments such as culture, gastronomy among other. Equally, Mexico will continue developing new experiences in our traditional and non-traditional destinations, to tailor to the needs of new generations, specifically “millennials.” We are not only looking to increase the number of travelers, as we would love to see every traveler venture out of their hotels and enjoy the wonderful attractions and delightful  Mexican food.

What is Cesar Mendoza’s opinion?

Canada is our second largest source of international travelers to Mexico after the U.S. In 2017, 1.9 million plus Canadians arrived in Mexico, that translates in an increase of 9% more than the previous year, as I mentioned we expect to close 2018 with a 12% increase. Air Canada, Aeromexico, Air Transat, Interjet, Sunwing and Westjet are some of our main commercial allies that operate between Canada and Mexico on a regular basis from 23 airports in Canada and 13 Mexican destinations.

Due to the geographic characteristics of Canada (the second largest country in the world), the cultural characteristics of each region and the French language in the Province of Quebec, Mexico’s Tourism Board features three offices in Canada which are based in Montreal, Toronto, and Vancouver. We work very closely with the local tourism industry and analyze aspects and tendencies that affect the flow of tourism.

Having a presence in the three main regions of Canada allows us to take the correct actions in conjunction with our head office in Mexico.

Wrapping up…

We would like to thank Cesar for taking the time to answer our questions and sharing this valuable and interesting information.

The responses outlined above support the premise that market intelligence is crucial for decision-making around defining and developing the best marketing strategy. By doing this we can determine with precision how to best fit into the market to meet the needs of consumers, identify areas of opportunity for market penetration and for market development, among others. All of that will help to increase and retain customers, generate revenue, and generate leads. Furthermore interpreting market intelligence is key for long-term results.

Mauricio Ruiz Arnaut
Director of Business Development.

 

 

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How important is it to develop strategic relationships and contacts inside target markets?

The importance of making strategic contacts is fundamental to success – particularly when expanding into new territory. Relationships facilitate market penetration, assist in identifying new audiences, and measuring product performance. Partnerships can be formal or informal and require different levels of commitment in order to keep the relationship beneficial.

strategic relationships

 

Rahul Samant CEO of Rehabtronics told us that… “it’s very critical to establish strong sales and distribution channels as well as relationships with key opinion leaders”. Cindy Collins founder of Mining Technology Partners noted relationships are …”  huge and the focus of [her] company. [They] put providers together with contacts in Mexico and help them with distribution or [creating a] sales network.  Not only this, but to find references and the who’s who of using your products… this industry [mining] is very dependent on the usual early adopters.  We are often asked for who is using our customers’ products, especially for the more innovative or game changing products” . Alejandro Godoy founder of  Seafood Business Solutions highlighted “…it is very important to develop relationships with key decision makers, specialty seafood buyers in new markets.” Carlos Escobosa Commercial and Administrative Director of  The Residences at Solaz observed that “contacts in target markets offer a direct line to what consumers in those markets want, and most importantly, how to reach them in a cost-efficient way”.

This article is part 2 of 3.
In case you missed Part 1: Top 4 Challenges to Business Development.


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Case Study: Tennis Sponsorship Campaign

Tennis Sponsorship CampaignSinclair and Ruiz designed and implemented a sports marketing sponsorship campaign to reach a niche market for a resort client. The client’s infrastructure encompasses 4 hotels, a marina, golf and country club, and a gated residential community. The multi-dimensional campaign included advertising, PR and event participation, which secured leads as desired.

Following the initial campaign and implementation of the subsequent inbound marketing strategy, leads purchased all-inclusive packages at our client’s resort to participate in a 4-day tennis tournament.

The tournament was incorporated into the sports marketing campaign in order to generate an immediate return on investment. In addition to the tournament participants, those leads provided referrals to spouses and other family members who also traveled to the resort on dates within the 4 months following the conclusion of the campaign. Therefore the encouragement of referrals as part of the campaign increased the client’s short-term return on investment.  Within the first 4 months following the conclusion of the campaign, our client registered a lead conversion rate of 11%, concluding the 12 month cycle with a conversion rate of 33%.

Contact info@sinclairandruiz.com to discuss how sponsorship campaigns and sports marketing can increase your organization’s brand awareness and sales. You may also visit www.sinclairandruiz.com.

 

 


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Case Study: Fly and Buy Discovery Week Campaign

Fly and Buy

Sinclair and Ruiz promoted and coordinated a Discovery Week trip for a developer client who was seeking to promote awareness of their new rental and property management service; along with the remaining units available for sale in their latest condominium project.  The campaign was designed to convert leads obtained through different marketing efforts into clients.

Our team assisted with the design and implementation of the Discovery Week invitation and travel logistics. In order to engage with the leads, we designed a communications strategy to speak to the needs and emotional wishes of the prospective clients. We delivered this communication strategy via inbound marketing efforts, and providing easy contact with our branded representatives for interested parties. Upon reaching the desired level of engagement we maintained frequent communication with the prospective clients to answer questions, assist with travel arrangements, collect any required fees, and increase excitement about the Discovery Week.

To support our developer client, assisted in the design of the Discovery Week Schedule, in order to optimize the possibility of obtaining successful fly and buy sales results.

At the campaign conclusion, our client obtained a 52% conversion rate of prospective clients that paid their own flight and a discounted condominium rental rate to spend a week at the units available for rent. In addition to earning new rental clients, our client sold condominium units by the end of the Discovery Week, thus generating a short term return on their investment.

 

Contact Sinclair and Ruiz today at info@sinclairandruiz.com to learn how we can design and manage your successful Fly and Buy campaign. www.sinclairandruiz.com


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Selling a Destination in Less Than Ideal Conditions

Many travel and tourism destinations face challenges because of  the ongoing economic downturn. Others additionally face negative press regarding environmental issues, violence, and civil unrest; as well as misinformation.  Therefore destinations must  constantly evaluate their situations and take the necessary measures required to survive and thrive at any given time. The following are a few points that should be considered:

 New Markets – When a traditional market does not respond, destinations must adapt and reach-out to new markets. While traditional markets should not be ignored or forgotten, destinations need to expand their reach.

 Focus Budgets– It is important to target limited funds on very specific areas. Destinations and private organizations must resist diluting their investments by trying to cover as much market as possible. It is amazing what can be achieved with limited budgets if they are applied effectively and consistently.

 A Balanced Approach – Marketing efforts should be directed to the consumer. Tourism and recreational real estate marketing strategies often rely heavily on third parties such as tour operators, travel agents, and brokers to connect with consumers. Though third parties continue to be essential players, consumers increasingly make purchasing decisions based on their own research and peer reviews. Therefore communicating directly with existing and potential clients is a key element in any successful campaign, as are great customer service and ongoing client care.

Education – Destinations should reach out to consumers and educate them about the competitive advantages of their brand. Inform consumers what the destination offers and clarify misinformation.  In addition, communicate what the destination is doing to correct issues that displease consumers.

Speak the Consumers’ Language – Take into account language and cultural nuances to make sure the message being heard by the market is the one you are trying to transmit.


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Mazatlan Concludes Its Western Canada Tour

Francisco de la Vega Aragon, State Secretary of Tourism, led a delegation that invited Canadians to visit Mazatlan and the Copper Canyon.

Vancouver, B.C. – Sept. 22nd, 2010- The Mazatlan delegation concluded its visit to Western Canada this past week. The group of travel industry executives and Tourism Board officials traveled to Vancouver, Edmonton, Calgary, Saskatoon and Winnipeg. The tour took place within the framework of Mexico Fest and the annual Addison Travel Trade Shows; and aimed to promote the Mazatlan and Copper Canyon Getaway.

“Mazatlan’s tourism industry representatives spoke enthusiastically to travel agents and travelers,” Said the State Secretary of Tourism. “Our goal is to encourage Western Canadians to explore the myriad of attractions that the destination offers.”

Mazatlan’s seminars encouraged guests to explore Cosalá and El Quelite – the magical towns that surround Mazatlan, in addition to cultural and historic attractions. Paul Beckman invited guests to participate in the upcoming Sustainable Nature Tourism Symposium & Expo taking place in Mazatlan in December 2010. Mr. Beckman, President of the event’s organizing committee, noted that the expo will bring together universities, entrepreneurs, governments and environmental authorities to discuss the development of sustainable tourism in the region.

Thousands of Canadians travel to Mazatlan each year and many return multiple times to the city known as the Pearl of the Pacific.  Throughout the tour, the delegation expressed the diversity of activities available, which provide new and exciting experiences to Canadians who choose Mazatlan as their holiday destination.

About Mazatlan:

Mazatlan is located on Mexico’s Pacific Coast at the foot of the Sierra Madre Mountains. Founded in the 16th Century, Mazatlan possesses one of Mexico’s only seaside historic centers. One in every three travelers that visits Mazatlan is Canadian. The city, State Tourism Board, and the Mazatlan Hotel Association are thrilled to bring a part of Mazatlan to Canada as a preview to the winter season. For more information visit: www.gomazatlan.com.