The Application of Societal Marketing in Egyptian Travel Agencies

Ghada Hammoud, Soha Abd-Elwahab, Takwa Essawy

Abstract


The concept of societal marketing emerged to promote a more socially responsible, moral and ethical model of marketing. It is an approach that adopts a holistic, integrated view of marketing, considering social equity, environmental protection and economic livability.

Societal marketing aims at marketing sustainable products and services which satisfy customer needs and significantly improve the humanistic marketing and the ecological marketing.

The past few years have seen a steady growth in the claims of adopting the principles of societal marketing as a new approach which has led to the creation of many initiatives to address concerns such as environmental conservation, social issues - such as poverty reduction and local and community economic development……etc- and companies' responsibilities towards their employees. Promoting growth that respects culture and environment and supports the well-being of local communities is a crucial issue for the evolution of modern tourism. This requires the increase of awareness and the adoption of responsibility behavior by tourism businesses. Although there are opportunities as well as challenges to adopt societal marketing strategies in tourism business scale, there is a lack of awareness in Egyptian travel agencies of the meaning, principles, importance, requirements and activities of its applications. Thus, there is a need for tourism industry to be more aware of the meaning of CSR, its principles, benefits and its requirements to move the agenda forward (Momtaz, 2008).

This research aims to; Highlight the importance of the application of societal marketing in the tourism sector.Identify the practices of corporate social responsibility in tourism companies.Determine and analyze obstacles for the application of societal marketing in the Egyptian tourism sector Evaluate the application of societal marketing in tourism companies to set recommendations to fulfill the effective application to societal marketing and CSR.Provide suggestions for a successful implementation of societal marketing in Egyptian travel agencies.

It is concluded that although most tourists make purchasing decisions based on such factors as price, weather, type and range of facilities and quality, more and more tourists are also concerned about the ethics of travel and more likely to book a holiday with a company that has a written code guaranteeing good working conditions, protection of the environment and support of local charities in the tourist destination. The lack of CSR awareness, the absence of governmental support to adopt CSR programs, the lack of the budget that is needed for its activities, rare of experts in CSR field and the disbelief of the management in CSR importance and benefits were considered to be barriers that affect CSR engagement in tourism companies.

Field study indicated that Egyptian travel agencies tend to take some form of societal marketing applications but they are not familiar with the real meaning of this term and its practices.

Keywords


Societal marketing, Responsible tourism, Corporate social responsibility (CSR)

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