Selecting Tourism Marketing Experts

Tourism marketing experts are everywhere, supposedly. It is easy to talk and theorise about how a travel brand can do things differently, but come execution time; many fall short of their grandiose plans. Selecting a travel marketing expert to take your travel and tourism brand to the next level can be daunting. In this blog, we highlight what tourism marketing is and what it isn’t, how to select a travel marketing expert, and most importantly, we provide you with a list of the leading travel marketing experts in both, the UAE and on an international level.

The first section discusses tourism marketing and how you can select a tourism marketing expert. The second section highlights our picks of the leading tourism marketing experts.

What is Tourism Marketing?

Tourism marketing is the use of marketing tactics and strategies to promote travel and tourism products or services that range from holiday packages, accommodations, or custom tour services, among other things. Although tourism marketing is often used to describe digital marketing used for travel and hospitality, there are many non-digital components of tourism marketing that include events, influencer marketing and plenty of market research.

What Are the Types of Tourism Marketing?

  • Digital Marketing
  • Influencer Marketing
  • Public Relations
  • Sales Calls
  • Familiarisation Trips
  • Research and Development

What Are the Four Basic Pillars of Tourism Marketing?

  • The product
  • The place
  • The price
  • The promotion

Some may confuse the four pillars of tourism marketing with the four p’s marketing. They are the same in many ways, but there are slight differences.

The product in tourism marketing is concerned with how the tourism offering can be compared to its rivals and competitors. A lot can be arived at in this regard by asking the question, “what value does it offer?” Most people think of destinations or accommodations when it comes to travel and tourism products. However, services are also included in this category; therefore, offerings like custom tours or air travel are also products of travel and tourism.

The place refers to the geographic location or the physical address from which the tourism offering can be accessed. In some cases the place may be virtual, like an online channel that is used for providing custom iteniraries for example.

Price refers to the monetary value of the tourism offering that the customer will have to forgo to patronise the tourism offering. Gone are the days when a tourism offerings price is the last thing a patron will find out. Prices are now widely available online, and travel brands not using this channel to provide their prices are wasting their time and customers.

Promotion is how a travel business reaches its customers or convinces them to patronise its offerings. This includes special offers, discounts, and all kinds of advertising efforts.

What Should You Look for in A Tourism Marketing Expert?

  • A well travelled individual.
  • An expert that sets clear and measurable goals.
  • An expert with a solid portfolio of known brands.
  • A well-connected travel expert.
  • A preference for an individual with experience working in your niche.

The Leading Tourism Marketing Experts in the UAE

Leo Fewtrell

Leo boasts a lifetime of experience in the Middle East’s travel, shipping, and airline industries. He has strong relationships with chief travel industry personnel and a robust network of leading hotel chains and airlines. Leo is a managing partner in the leading travel representation company in the Middle East and also currently manages the Dubai Travel and Tour Agents Group ( DTTAG). Leo was also the manager of Emirates Airline’s Dnatat World Travel, which was the leading travel management company in the region.

Sammy Musa

Sammy is a managing partner at Gulf Reps, the Middle East’s leading travel destination marketing company. Gulf Reps has seen unprecedented growth ever since Sammy took reign in 2015. His focus on ensuring that clients’ budgets are utilised to deliver the maximum impact through their translation into the best strategies sets Sammy apart from other tourism marketing experts. Sammy specialises in the Arab traveller niche and has been quoted saying, “the Middle Eastern traveller is one of the most sought after traveller types in the world because of their disproportionately higher than average spend. At Gulf Reps, we have dedicated our careers to being able to capture those travellers for our clients.”

Nazar Musa

Nazar Musa is a serial entrepreneur with businesses extending well over the tourism industry and into things like wellness and even martial arts. Nazar started his career with one of the biggest names in European tourism (Airtours PLC), where he operated in both Spain and Jamaica. He was also instrumental in developing and growing the UK-based Holiday Autos brand (the holiday car rental service) across the globe. Nazar entered into a partnership with (the online travel and leisure retailer mega site) and launched Holiday Autos in Dubai. 

Nour Aridi

A trailblazer and one of the leading entrepreneurs in the travel and tourism space of the UAE, Nour is the CEO of Gulf Reps, and the founder of Tiri Consultancy, the tourism, hospitality and marketing intelligence specialist company. With over 13 years of tourism and hospitality experience in the Gulf, Nour has an envious international client roster with little to no churn due to her crafty and impactful destination marketing strategies that truly move the needle. She covers every element of travel marketing, from events, intelligence and outreach. Nour is an exemplary Middle Eastern tourism marketing expert.


Aside from the abovementioned tourism marketing experts, the International Tourism Consultancy Network (ITCN) is home to more high calibre, of which Leo, Sammy, Nazar, and Nour all belong to. The ITCN is a unique alliance of the worlds leading travel marketing, PR, and travel representation companies who share the single goal of delivering stellar cross-border travel marketing campaigns. The collective is currently spread over 19 countries and can reach over 3 billion people worldwide. Working with an ITCN partner is a sure fire way to drive tourism marketing success.

Gulf Reps

Gulf Reps is also a key member of the ITCN network. It specialises in directing the highly sought-after Arab traveller segment to your destination.

Gulf Reps is the leading travel and tourism representation company in the Middle East, with over 60 years of regional and industry experience. Specialising in directing the Arab traveller segment to your region or destination, we have served clients on six continents, delivering transformative results to everyone from hoteliers to tourism boards. 

Our mix of world-class marketing expertise, PR specialists, unparalleled connections and relationships, plus our eclectic mix of marketing channels, makes working with Gulf Reps the only sure way to drive Middle Eastern tourists to your destination.

To find out more about our services, you can call us at +971 (0)4 703 6333 or write to us at

5 Offseason Marketing Strategies for Travel Brands

If you work in the realm of tourism and hospitality, you are probably aware that most attractions are seasonal. Peak season is when there are the most visitors, and your attraction’s usually congested. There is typically another season that follows closely in visitor numbers that is considered to be the 2nd best time to visit said attraction, and lower prices than peak season usually characterize this period. Lastly, there are offseasons which are usually when the weather is either extreme or undesirable, and as a result, business is slow. In this blog, we discuss what offseason marketing strategies are available to business owners and tourism and hospitality managers to increase revenues during this time.

The Easiest of All Offseason Marketing Strategies: Slash Prices

When the weather is too extreme, rarely would anyone want to spend much money to come to your attraction. Your prospects already have one hurdle ahead of them (climate), and you should aim to remove as many obstacles from the way as possible to move them closer to making the purchase decision. A steep price is the biggest of those obstacles. 

It would be wise to clearly highlight on promotion materials any mechanisms your attraction may have to alleviate the harsh weather conditions, whether it be outdoor air conditioners for hot areas or warm lounges for cold ones.

Offer Early Payment Discounts

To generate revenue during a time you are sure very little traffic will be present, plan ahead and start selling peak season tickets at a discounted price. This promotion usually goes well once patrons are informed that they can have their cash back within a certain period of time should they change their mind. The bigger the discount, the smaller the refund window should be.

Hold Contests

Giveaways are hard to resist. Hold a competition where applicants must submit their contact details to apply. The prize can be free entry or free patronage of your service. A 50% discount for second place is also a good idea. After announcing the winners, you will have compiled a sizeable list of leads that you can use for future marketing campaigns.

Start a Referals Program

For this strategy to work, you will first need to have a robust customer relationship management (CRM) system in place. From this system, compile a list of previous customers that have been highly satisfied with your service and are close to becoming advocates of your brand. Then, offer them a discount or a special offer should they refer your services to a friend that eventually converts and buys from you. This way, you will have a team of remote salespeople pushing your service to people that trust them highly.

Focus on Brand Awareness Campaigns

When it comes down to it, expecting as much traffic as you receive in peak season during an offseason is unrealistic. While generating above-average sales during this season is an admirable goal to have, your efforts may be more worthwhile elsewhere. 

Generating good brand awareness and focusing on PR initiatives is a good idea during the offseason. Generally, your content generation should be sped up during this time. The goal should be for your brand to be firmly lodged at the back of your customer’s minds in preparation for peak season or other more desirable seasons. This can be done through a mix of educational or entertaining content mixed with clear messages about your brand, what sets you apart from the competition, and what services you provide. 

Generally speaking, the educational/entertaining content to branding content ratio should be about 3:1, respectively. Refer to Gary Vaynerchuks’s book Jab, Jab, Jab, Right Hook for more on this content strategy.

Your audience will tire from continuously hearing about your services, but when you approach them with content that they can benefit from or simply something they can watch when they are bored, you train their brain to associate your brand with a source of either value or entertainment, so that when it is time to showcase your services, you truly have their attention.

Offseason Marketing Strategies and Gulf Reps

At Gulf Reps we understand the importance of delivering marketing solutions to different traveller types. Starting with market research and ending with execution and reporting, we build campaigns that make an impact. 

Gulf Reps is the leading travel and tourism representation company in the Middle East, with over 60 years of regional and industry experience. We have served clients on six continents, delivering transformative results to everyone from hoteliers to tourism boards. Our mix of world-class marketing expertise, PR specialists, unparalleled connections and relationships, and an eclectic mix of marketing channels makes working with Gulf Reps the only sure way to drive Middle Eastern tourists to your destination.

To find out more about our services, you can call us at +971 (0)4 703 6333 or write to us at