The Senior Special Assistant (SSA) to Bayelsa State Governor on Tourism, Dr. Piriye Kiyaramo, has described the Ibom “Happy Hour” as a noble destination marketing initiative, saying that the Governor-elect, Pastor Umo Bassey Eno of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), means we’ll for his people.
Dr. Kiyaramo, who stated this while exchanging views with Pioneer Chairman of the Federation of Tourism Associations of Nigeria (FTAN), Akwa Ibom State Chapter, Mr. Usen Udoh at Resort Carabana in Uyo on Monday, maintained that the “Ibom happy hour” remains the best domestic tourism offering so far.
According to the governor’s aide, “happy hour” initiative which is geared towards stimulating the local economy, with a view to growing small and medium tourism enterprises to give visitors to the state a memorable experience, beyond just food and drinks can help to build brand loyalty as well as create a sense of community around businesses, depending on how the initiative is executed.
Dr. Kiyaramo informing that the “happy hour” marketing strategy has been celebrated in several business communities across the world, citing France, Australia, Chile, Canada, Iceland and India as examples good examples where the strategy has worked for tourism enterprises.
While commending the governor-elect for introducing the “Ibom Happy Hour”, initiative, Dr. Kiyaramo reiterated the urgent need to sensitise operators of small and medium scale tourism enterprises in the state to key into to the tourism development vision of the incoming administration by complying with the modus operandi in executing the innovative tourism marketing innovation.
He said, understanding the traditions of the rules of etiquette of happy hour will further help tourism businesses in the state to quickly integrate into the new culture of improving their sales during the happy hours, whether at the workplace, bars, restaurants, clubs and hotels to have little fun during their free periods.
“Happy hour can be a great marketing innovation of increasing foot traffic to boost sales for restaurants and bars among other service sectors. Available data reveals that bars with happy hour-oriented programmes had average increases in revenue during happy hours. So, you can attract new customers and also encourage existing ones to stick around for a bit longer within happy hour sales promotions.
“Since most happy hours take place during the week, you can use them as an opportunity to draw in people who might not normally come out to your establishment. Not only does happy hour pull customers, but it also boosts sales and encourages people to come back,” Dr. Kiyaramo explained.
On his part, Pioneer Chairman of the Federation of Tourism Associations of Nigeria (FTAN), Akwa Ibom State Chapter and current chairman of Akwa Ibom Tourism and Hospitality Practitioners Association (AKTHOPA), Mr. Usen Udoh who also doubles as chairman of Akwa Ibom State Tourism and Hospitality Practitioners’ Association (AKTHOPA), called on the business community to maximise the benefits of the happy hour marketing innovation to create new tourism products, leveraging on the new tourism marketing innovation of the incoming administration.
“Akwa Ibom Happy Hour has indeed created opportunities for tourism enterprises, customers and visitors to network, leveraging on the initiative to stimulate the local economy, with a view to growing small and medium tourism enterprises to give visitors that memorable experience that the state can offer, beyond just food and drinks.
“Small business operators also need be to given proper orientation about the rules of etiquette, such as saying: “please” and “thank you,” when it comes to happy hour moments, particularly for visitors and tourists, attending happy hours.
“We will make sure our happy hour is unique by giving our clients new tourism and hospitality experiences that they will talk about everywhere they go. We will garnish the happy hour with more than just a place to come and drink or eat, but a place to have the most memorable tourism experiences that will compel tourists to want to come back to Akwa Ibom State.
“The good thing is that visitors, having experienced our happy hours, will go out there to share the unique experience about Akwa Ibom State on social media and other channels to further promote our local businesses to attract more customers or tourists to the city of Uyo, and other places which have been transformed into smart cities with noticeable tourism infrastructures totted all round. You are welcome. Amazing Akwa Ibom, “Mr. Udoh maintained.