Recommended arrival day for delegates. All pre-adventures end on Monday, May 7 by 4:00 PM at the Dead Sea.
Details and location to be announced.
Pick up your badge and conference materials at AdventureNEXT Check In at the Kempinski Hotel prior to the opening plenary session. You will be required to show your badge to enter all AdventureNEXT sessions, meals and special events.
H.E. Mrs. Lina Annab from Jordan’s Ministry of Tourism and Antiquities, ATTA’s President Shannon Stowell and Event Emcee Muna Haddad will welcome delegates to the second annual AdventureNEXT Near East.
Renowned storyteller Leon McCarron has explored some of the world’s most remote and populous areas on foot. His recent book, The Land Beyond, is about his experience walking one thousand miles from Jerusalem to the Sinai Peninsula. In the book, he shares lessons about positivity and connection in a region from which we often hear mostly negative stories.
With compassion and empathy, McCarron’s work overcomes a culture of fear — fear of different people, different ideologies, competition — and finds that the path of collaboration yields stronger results. Through his inspiring story, AdventureNEXT delegates will better understand the larger benefits and goals of adventure tourism: to build awareness, knowledge, understanding, and cooperation among people. And at the more local level, to learn once again that critical elements of success in any endeavor are connection, collaboration, and understanding.
The AdventureNEXT MARKETPLACE features up to 50 inbound tour operators and accommodations from the Near East region with a spotlight on Jordan. It provides a focused setting to connect with potential partners, hold business meetings and promote adventure brands. A global delegation of outbound tour operators, wholesalers, travel advisors, editorial media, and influencers attend MARKETPLACE events for introductions to new companies and product development discussions.
This session will offer a deep dive into the psychology of adventure travelers to highlight what motivates them to choose a destination and what excites them during trips. The first part of the workshop will dig into details about traveler profiles and lifestyles, along with the relevant marketing tactics that can be adopted to reach these travelers and inspire them to choose a Near East adventure. We’ll place particular focus on presenting marketing content, developing offers, and pricing.
In the second part of this talk, we’ll use behavioral insights as a foundation to discuss tactics for designing and delivering memorable adventures in the Near East. Delegates will hear ideas for how to plan and facilitate impactful experiences that make travelers want to return to this part of the world again and again. We’ll focus on emotional engagement, memory creation, and sense for impact. Delegates will also get ideas for weaving sustainability into the experience design. This session is intended for established tour operators interested in taking their well-established marketing and product design approaches to the next level.
For more advanced businesses, this workshop will focus on how to build effective stories for a brand or company, offering information on the practicalities of storytelling as a content marketing technique. Delegates will learn how to be a storybuilder, enjoying real-world travel photography and film examples that show how individual story components are used to emotionally connect with viewers.
Facilitated by seasoned photographer, tour operator, and educator Genevieve Hathaway, this session will give attendees the opportunity to learn about and experiment with elements of a good story. It will cover how to create emotional responses, develop characters, build brand identity into your story, and, perhaps most importantly, embed purchase drivers into any story to drive business from your story building efforts. This session is designed to have broad appeal to delegates from a variety of backgrounds — whether you represent a tour operator, destination, or media, the techniques presented will help you create and present stories that capture the hearts and imaginations of your audience.
In 1989, Tracy Edwards captained the first all-female crew in the renowned yachting event the Whitbread Round the World Race. They finished first in their class, second overall, and captured their nation’s hearts. In 1990, Edwards won the BBC Sports Personality of the Year Award. Then in 1998, she and her crew were on course to break the speed record for circumnavigating the globe under sail when their mast snapped in the Southern Ocean, 2,000 miles west of Chile. What happened next is a harrowing story of perseverance, courage and teamwork.
Since that time Edwards has authored two books, motivated many people with her riveting stories of leadership and teamwork, and dedication. She knows better than most the importance of a team connected by trust and empowered to act. In June of 2018, Maiden will launch again, fully restored and on a mission to campaign for girls’ education worldwide – its first stop will be in Jordan. Edwards’ message to the adventure travel businesses, government leaders, and media of AdventureNEXT Near East 2018 is one of encouragement — encouragement to think deeply and broadly about the connections at our disposal, to consider how we can elevate and empower those within our networks, and to prepare for the greatest rewards when we make empowering connections a priority.
Details and location to be announced
Start your day with an early morning dip in the healing waters of the Dead Sea on the Kempinski Beach. Wear a swimsuit, water-resistant footwear, bring a towel, a camera and swim at your own risk. Showers and changing rooms available near the Infinity pool.
Entrepreneurship and creativity are keys to moving away from the mindset that sustainable travel is only for luxury guests or that only donor-funded responsible tourism ventures can be successful. Using relevant and engaging stories to illustrate how small to micro-enterprises can overcome traditional excuses for not investing in responsible tourism practices, sustainable tourism business director Dave Butler and certified ecotourism consultant Irene Lane will guide delegates through an engaging exercise of practical solutions for common roadblocks.
Designed for adventure businesses at any level in the supply chain, this session will offer real-life lessons that are both useful and replicable for those wishing to implement a higher standard of responsibility in order to protect the people and places that rely on tourism to thrive.
This highly interactive session will offer research, role playing, and product development techniques that will help regional suppliers cultivate new adventure travel trade partners and reach end consumers. The session will open with a look at a statistical tool that analyzes key risk factors travelers may consider when thinking about travel to a new destination, such as medical risk, road safety, and travel security (which encompasses political violence, social unrest, and violent and petty crime). Using this statistical tool as a base, delegates will practice getting to the crux of a potential customer’s hesitation and share information that can help that person overcome specific objections.
Part two of the session will lay out specific steps tour operators can take to counter a negative brand image with one that is positive and inviting. Central to achieving this goal: creating an aspirational image that can be reliably delivered on and designing new products that directly challenge assumptions. The session will close with a look at how to wrap new products in marketing messages that speak to travelers’ deeper motivations, highlighting the most compelling benefits of the incredible adventure experiences to be had in the MENA region. This session is intended for new and mature tour operators wanting to hone their sales techniques and sharpen their product offering to address regional stereotypes.
In this hands-on session, tour operator and AdventureEDU facilitator Mike Brcic, shares the step-by-step content marketing process his company has taken to bring in more than 100,000 website visitors and earn tens of thousands of dollars in sales every month. Delegates will leave with tips, tools, and strategies to launch an effective content marketing strategy at their companies, whether they’re operating with zero budget or a $100,000 budget.
This session is intended for adventure travel companies who are either at the beginning stages with content marketing or looking for ways to improve their current strategies with a back-to-basics approach.
Special opportunity: If you’re interested in having your business examined as a case study during the session, you may submit your company name and URL (along with the URL of your blog, if you have one) to [email protected] for consideration. We’ll notify the company whose case is chosen prior to the event.
On a broad scale, technology is reshaping our existence: consider how we live our personal lives, now often heavily supported by social media platforms, to how we conduct business, in which online marketplaces connect us with products and services around the world in a range of formats – with a swipe on your phone. Technology’s sweeping impacts are sometimes felt before they are even fully comprehended, and business leaders often struggle to separate the pivotal, life-changing shifts brought by technology from those which are merely incidental. Join Erik Blachford of Technology Crossover Ventures to gain insight on how digital trends are reshaping traveler behavior and expectations, with specific examples from the field. Then, hear from Monir Parikh of Bandwango about affordable technological innovations you can utilize today to transform your business to meet new customer expectations, improve business relationships, and stay ahead of the curve.
Industry veteran and CEO of the Adventure Travel Trade Association, Shannon Stowell, will share his insights and perspective on adventure tourism’s power to influence and shape life on earth. Tourism, a $2.3 trillion dollar industry, is being driven by waves of travelers yearning for transformative experiences, including new legions of travelers originating from China and other Asian markets. The singular opportunity adventure travel businesses hold is to touch the hearts and minds of travelers and, in so doing, be a catalyst for changes in behavior that can benefit our world.
It’s this opportunity to spur change that must be at the forefront of all our business strategies for the coming years. By opening doors to diverse places, offering chances for people to immerse themselves in new landscapes and cultures, adventure providers can deliver truly attitude-shifting, behavior-altering experiences. Simply put, adventure businesses hold a key for changing how humans behave on Earth, from how we approach environmental issues to how we address social and community matters.
Jordan Tourism has been delighted to host the second AdventureNEXT in the Near East and to offer a fond farewell, you are invited to enjoy a night of culture, cuisine and celebration overlooking the Dead Sea. Transfers to the airport will be available for those who depart on flights out of Amman late this evening.