Community-Driven Innovative Technology: An Avenue to Promote Malaysian Homestay Programmes
Homestay programme as a rural tourism product in Malaysia is a business initiative and simultaneously supports community development in regions with potential attractions and destinations for global tourists. The global tourism market trend shows robust performance of the sector, which contributes to economic growth and job creation including in Malaysia. Thus, it is vital to take advantage of the situation and foster the continued growth of tourism through effective marketing of this authentic tourism product. Therefore, this paper outlines our approach to develop a content management system (CMS) that is best suitable for a homestay business initiative as a promoting tool. Technology of Web 2.0 such as Google Apps is identified as the tool, which its excellent features can be exploited to achieve the promotion goals. The study involved several homestay programmes in the northern region of peninsular Malaysia, where the source of qualitative data is abundance to help elicit requirements for the development of CMS. A framework for the CMS and a sample of the created websites are presented. An effective and innovative community-driven website 2.0 is expected to support the Malaysian homestay programme as a promotional tool for the unique rural tourism business initiative.
Index terms- Homestay programme, Community based tourism, Rural tourism product, Content management system, Technology assisted promotion.