FOCUS on Data: Getting smarter

Angus & Associates has launched a new data tool for tourism operators that will provide them with information on customer expectations and experiences.

Cristine Angus

The tourism and leisure research consultancy’s getsmart Customer Experience Index will provide operators with updates, reports and alerts on the latest customer feedback.

The system is built around a survey, recognised measures of customer engagement, and brand loyalty.

“This is an insight product for individual operators to gather information from their customer base and benchmark with like operators,” says Angus & Associates managing director Cristine Angus.

It is part of the Wellington-based consultancy’s drive to provide the tourism sector with better insight of the market – its purpose since being established in 2001.

Relatively new market entrants such as Qrious, which is producing a new level of visitor location insight for the tourism sector, are less competitors than suppliers of another layer of useful data, says Angus.

“Getting inside people’s heads as opposed to just measuring what they are doing, that is where we see ourselves – in the ‘understanding’ space,” she adds.

“So, we would use all of the datasets that are available, whether it is Qrious’ or Marketview’s [payment data], we take that data and combine it with our own insight, and we use that new information to answer the questions our clients have.”

The key to data is being able to utilise it to help understand why people are behaving the way they are and why they are making the decisions they are.

“It is that layer of understanding – not just measuring things – that is essential if you want to influence the market,” says Angus.

There was a growing awareness within the tourism sector of the value of good insight but there are still issues around having the right tools available and affordability for an industry as diverse as tourism.

“There are some great tools out there and some of the new datasets are fantastic but none of them is a silver bullet,” says Angus.

“No one dataset is going to revolutionise our understanding of the tourism industry. There is a need to bring together all the data from the various sources to compile a view of what lies ahead.”

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