As a Tourism Manager, you will be based with a national, regional or a local authority, you take a lead role in promoting your geographical area of responsibility by helping to improve the facilities and attractions of the area, accommodation stock, marketing, training, business support and skills development available to the sector. You may have specific responsibility for a particular area such as quality, business and skills development or marketing.
A lot of careful planning and thought goes into creating effective promotional campaigns funding and budgets. If you are marketing focussed, you have to decide (with other senior officers) what the key marketing and brand messages are, who they should be aimed at, and how they can be communicated. Some of the most effective strategies are carefully targeted at particular segments of the market, genealogy of families for example, or those who have retired. You will initiate market research to collect this information, getting the views of a wide range of tourism professionals, accommodation suppliers, transport companies, travel agents and tour operators. The focus can then shift to the communication campaign, when you will liaise with advertising agents, designers, photographers and printers, and help write copy for brochures, newsletters and posters.
Much of your time will be spent in face-to-face presentations, encouraging leading tour operators to add your area to their portfolio, briefing and entertaining travel writers, and attending travel trade shows and media events. Travel agents, tour operators, group and conference organisers will also approach you for advice and help in arranging programmes for their clients. If your focus is quality or skills and business development, you will be responsible for liaising with employers and quality assurance organisations to promote best practice and increase the take up of quality marques in your area.
You may also be involved in the development of training activities required by the businesses in your area and will need to liaise with local learning providers and careers and support agencies. This might mean developing initiatives to help businesses with their own marketing campaigns, improving customer service through training packages, or implementing a loyalty scheme amongst several businesses such as restaurants, pubs, coffee shops, hotels and visitor attractions.