At present, even with the situation as volatile as that suffered by destinations, it is essential to have a Strategic Plan that frames its actions to guarantee its future sustainability. There are many destinations that have defined strategies, although sometimes they do not achieve the expected success. This is not only because of the occurrence of unforeseen events, but also due to the architecture of the construction and deployment of the plan. In this sense, it is important to consider the following seven keys to ensure that the strategy has the necessary conditions to achieve success:

  1. The plan must be built from relevant information of value concentrated in areas, which every destination should have under its strategy. It is essential to carry out a detailed analysis on the degree of development of the areas that determine a Smart Tourist Destination (ITD): Governance, Technology, Innovation, Sustainability and Accessibility.

  2. It is essential to have the points of view of the different agents involved and implicated in the Destination: visitors, residents, private agents, administration, tour operators, etc.

  3. The proposed Strategic Challenges should evolve the traditional approach based fundamentally on the promotion or the concretion of actions on source markets and complement it with actions aimed at improving destination management.

  4. The plan should have a scheme of scaled indicators (from the Vision of the destination, its Strategic Challenges and the Projects in which they are deployed) together with a scheme for objectification and reporting of results.

  5. The strategy must be leveraged on an associated communication plan that has, not only a brand identity of the strategic plan, but also a structuring of the communication actions segmented to each of the audiences.

  6. It is key to define the responsibility, internal or external to the Destination Management Entity, for monitoring the progress, milestones and results of the plan through the compliance controls of milestones and KPIs (Key Performance Indicators).

  7. Be a strategic plan “attentive and alive”. Flexible and always on the alert for possible new opportunities and threats that could modify, cancel what was planned or activate new strategic initiatives.

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