• Michaela Pavlikova
4. semester, Turisme, Kandidat (Kandidatuddannelse)
This master thesis reviews the field of active outdoor tourism in Thy, Denmark and examines the active outdoor identity in a destination branding context. It approaches destination branding from a supply-side perspective revolved around destination brand identity through an examination of the Destination Marketing Organisation’s (DMO) and the active outdoor stakeholders’ perspectives on the present active outdoor brand identity. VisitThy is the DMO in Thy which positions the active outdoor brand identity within the sub-brand of Thy National Park in the current destination branding strategy. However, the active outdoor identity is not particularly visible through VisitThy’s branding and the sub-brand of Cold Hawaii appears to be favoured since it pulls tourists to the destination. The research is relevant since outdoor tourism is trendy and more tourists are requesting nature-based active holidays. The thesis seeks to examine whether this specific group of stakeholders’ identities are represented in the brand identity constructed and communicated by the DMO. Theoretically, all stakeholders should be involved in the branding process in order to construct a successful branding strategy. Further, the natural resources in Thy create a favourable frame for active outdoor activities and therefore it is implied that the active outdoor identity could be more visible in the branding strategy. The purpose of the research is to examine the underlying aspects of brand identity creation and whether the findings call for a new branding strategy. It is approached through an interpretive paradigm conducted through the use of various types of qualitative interviews founded on the supply side perspective. Due to the social constructivist approach emphasising subjectivity, the findings decline generalisation. The empirical data is examined by the implementation of a content analysis and the findings are structured as a gap analysis between the DMO’s and the stakeholder’s reality constructions, and through a model adopted from organisational identity theory in order to identify different identity types. The literature reviews the concepts of destination branding, destination brand identity and introduces theories related to active outdoor tourism. Based on the empirical and theoretical findings, it is found that the DMO constructs a complex multiple brand identity which is reflected in the stakeholders’ inconsistent positioning in and between sub-brands represented in the branding strategy. The DMO favours diversity branding through multiple sub-positioning messages. On the other hand, the stakeholders’ collective meaning making, in a focus group interview, suggests umbrella branding as an approach to branding a unified identity through master brand messages and simultaneously embracing the establishment of an active outdoor network. It is proposed that the DMO initiates, facilitates and encourages a collaborative approach to branding the active outdoor identity which is founded on co-creation between the DMO and the committed stakeholders.
Udgivelsesdato31 jul. 2017
Antal sider86
ID: 261139832