“Word-of-Picture” In Attracting Tourists to Distant Destinations
Pictures have become one of the most evolving tool in marketing destinations. Using pictures in destination marketing is important as “word-of-picture” (WOP) speaks very loudly in influencing tourists to travel. This study aims to investigate which dimension of pictures speaks loudest in pulling tourists to travel and also to explore the significant relationship between “word-of-picture” (WOP) and tourist’s actual behaviour in travelling to distant destinations. The methodology used for this study is quantitative by distributing questionnaires to domestic tourists visiting the distant destinations, with questions regarding “word-of-picture” (WOP) and tourist’s actual behaviour. With 211 responses, findings indicate that the dimension of “geography”, particularly nature and landscape speaks the loudest in making tourist to travel as well as the dimension of “culture” particularly food speaks second loudest in pulling tourists to travel. Furthermore, the result shows there is a significant relationship between “word-of-picture” (WOP) and tourist’s actual behaviour especially for dimension of geography, culture and events. The results too showed that pictures say it all and they accomplish the task of tackling the tourist’s inner feelings and turning it into actual travelling as “word-of-picture” (WOP) does stimulate and influence tourists to travel to distant destinations. Therefore, pictures should be used more to motivate travel to these places as distant destinations have the potential to be developed and garner more tourist arrivals. Besides that, pictures are the closest tool that tourists see to visualise desired destinations. Through this, “word-of-picture” (WOP) is a highly capable and would become a powerful tool as the pictures speak for themselves.
Keywords: Word-Of-Picture (WOP), Actual Behaviour, Distant Destination, Destination Marketing Organizations (DMOs), Domestic Tourists.