Report Overview

Empowered by the explosion of data companies own or have access to about their existing customers as well as prospective customers, travel CMOs and their teams are on a mission to drive and transform business. Yet, more opportunities and promises mean more complexities in technological offerings and skill and function demands. It is within this context that marketing operations has risen as an important discipline in the past few years.

As a result, marketing operations is often tasked to manage channel and campaign processes and performance evaluation, select and manage technology partners, plan budget, and coordinate inter- and cross-team communications. Yet, core questions remain: Should there be a separate marketing operations specialist/team? What are the responsibilities and decision-making powers of the marketing operations function? In addition, there are broader questions that are related to operations and crucial to marketing success, including how marketing teams should be structured, what functions should report under marketing, and how budgets should be set.

To help travel marketing executives see how they stack up in the industry in these areas and set up strategies to optimize, Skift Research conducted a survey of senior executives and marketing professionals in various travel sectors on their practices and attitudes related to these questions. We will release the survey findings in a series of reports, each focusing on one specific sector. Our first two reports presented findings for hotels (see Marketing Operations in the Travel Industry Benchmarks: Hotels for more details) and for destination organizations (see Marketing Operations in the Travel Industry Benchmarks: Destinations for more details). This report focuses on data for the tours and activities sector, including tour operators and wholesalers and tourist attractions.

Total sample size for this sector is 51. Please see the Appendix for more detailed sample demographics.

What You'll Learn From This Report

  • 2019 marketing priorities for tours and activities companies
  • Prevalence of dedicated marketing operations functions in tours and activities companies
  • Responsibilities and effectiveness of marketing operations functions in tours and activities companies
  • How travel activity marketing teams are structured and the effectiveness of each structure
  • Ideal marketing team structures in delivering marketing success
  • Functions that report under marketing in tours and activities companies
  • How travel activity marketers set up marketing budgets and the effectiveness of each budgeting approach
  • How outperforming tours and activities companies stand out in key marketing operations areas