Every Marketer will tell you about the 7P’s. These are the fundamentals of marketing. A different point of views will argue on which is more important than the other. They are all equally crucial and work in synergy is a system called the Marketing Mix.
The P for people is one that must be achieved by any organization to achieve its sales targets. Zimbabwe Tourism has in recent history failed to get its marketing mix right. At times only achieving the P for a product which comes naturally with attractions like the Victoria Falls.
In order to achieve and surpass the tourist arrivals all-time high of 1999, there is a need for Zimbabwe to ensure that it’s achieved at least 5 of the 7 p’s.
Within the process, there are low hanging fruits that do not require much investment or policy restructuring.
On Wednesday 22 August 2019 news started coming out of the sacking of Rita Likukuma as Zimbabwe Tourism Authority’s acting Chief Executive Officer. Likukuma’s ephemeral term was mired with a policy shift that achieved the unintended for Zimbabwe Tourism.
In the world of tourism, you need individuals that have the perfect fit for the job. Kenya has been enjoying relative growth as a result of having one Najib Balala in one of the highest offices. The same must be done in order the get file in the engine.
The appointment of Givemore Chidzidzi to acting Chief Executive of ZTA is one that by all measure was one overdue. Chidzidzi is widely respected and has carved a niche for himself as a champion of Zimbabwe Tourism. Shrewd and passionate about tourism, Chidzidzi is one of P that has been missing at ZTAs top office. Various players in the tourism sector in Zimbabwe and beyond welcomed Chidzidzi’s appointment as a step in the right direction.
Recently, speaking at a Tourism Golf day, Chidzidzi said: “The tourism sector has a target of contributing 15% to Zimbabwe’s GDP, we are currently at 8% but this is a moving target which should reach 15% by 2030”. In achieving this feat, Chidzidzi must prioritize collaboration with tourism, aviation and businesses at large to ensure that 5out of the 7 P’s are achieved.
What are they saying on Chidzidzi’s appointment
Today in Kariba one tour operator said “having Chidzidzi leading ZTA has brought renewed hope to Kariba Tourism and expects to see Kariba being jointly marketed to the level of Victoria Falls”. Such is the renewed hope that the industry holds with Chidzidzi’s appointment.
As Acting CE of an organization that is redefining itself. Chidzidzi has his work cut out but judging from the optimism that the market has it’s a common understanding that his administration unlike his predecessors with implement a sustained tourism development strategy in Zimbabwe for both the domestic and international markets.
In a statement by the ZTA Deputy Board Chairman, Dr. Precious Sibiya, said “l would like to congratulate Givemore for this appointment as the Acting Chief Executive. We as the board are confident in him and the executive team at the ZTA that they will continue to restore the important contribution tourism makes to the economy.”
Advice to Chidzidzi
The expectations are high and for a man that has given his all to Zimbabwe Tourism, Chidzidzi must give one more push to achieve Zimbabwe’s all-time tourist arrivals of 1999.