We’re living through the single biggest culture shift of our time” said Gary Vaynerchuk, Founder of Veyner Media at the WTTC Summit in Madrid last month. He was talking about the way we connect and communicate. Equally relevant, is the way we now live our lives.
Since mid April there have been a flurry of tourism anchored events – from the WTTC in Madrid, the ATM in Dubai , Barclays Travel Forum in London and last week the Economists Forum for Tourism in Madeira.
It’s always a privilege to attend these events and a fascination to hear opinion on what’s new, what irritates and what the burning issues really are. We frequently comment on what a ‘small world’ we live in but differences in economic, cultural and social statuses that co-exist in our ‘small’ planet, make it a melting pot of complexity and also, opportunity.
…We’re all in the media business first, then we do what we do” – Gary Vaynerchuk
The previously mentioned Veynerchuk delivered an impactful and memorable speech on how little the tourism industry does to properly utilise the internet, connect with customers and fully embracing this digital age. He also said; “We’re all in the media business first, then we do what we do.” This truth still needs to hit home for many people and not least, those in the health and wellness industry.
For the wellness purist, the omnipresent existence of social media is the satirical antithesis of their own connection mandate. The quest for human connection, connection with nature, with ourselves and our communities is the lifeblood to the evasive ‘balance’ being sought. People matter. Nature matters. It is those two humble assets that trump almost everything else. I’m noticing a gradual but also significant sea change in how wellness venues promote themselves and how they are recognised. It is harder to discern at the high end of the spa and retreat market where a brand reputation has been built and continuously upheld but for newer properties and locations the talk is more about the skill and gifted healing of their practitioners and gurus. The irony is that, for those people to do well, for those businesses to flourish, social media and digital connection MUST be a part of what they do …”We’re all in the media business first…”