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What is the winning rate of "overtaking on bends" in county-level tourism?
June 14, 2024

In this era of advanced internet, new things always come and go quickly. So, is the popularity of county-level tourism a temporary trend or a general trend? In fact, if we observe the changes in life around us carefully, you will find that this problem has traces to follow.

irst of all, from the appearance, the main reason for the popularity of county tourism is that the Internet acts as a catalyst, allowing the "wine fragrance" in the original deep hidden alley to emanate, that is, the niche landscape and characteristic food culture hidden deep in the county appear in front of the public, so that the previously rumored good things can speed up the marketing efficiency through the Internet's torrential flow, and there will be more "fish" naturally coming in.

For example, Anji in Huzhou received 1.676 million tourists during the May Day holiday, and a local café received 16000 visitors per day, producing 7941 cups of coffee... There are also county-level tourist destinations that have become popular due to the internet, such as Rongjiang in Guizhou, Caoxian in Shandong, and Yangshuo in Guangxi.

Secondly, from a longer-term perspective, the explosion of county-level tourism cannot be separated from the layout and guidance of national policies. There are over 2800 county-level administrative regions in China. Counties are the basic unit of national economic and social development, and an important component of promoting comprehensive rural revitalization. The upgrading of county-level tourism will provide opportunities for the comprehensive development of counties.

Since 2006, the country has put forward a long-term plan to promote county-level tourism and the construction of small tourism towns. In 2007, China named the first batch of 17 "China's Strong Tourism Counties", and the county coverage rate of A-level tourist attractions in the country has increased from 73% in 2012 to 93% in 2023. Tourist attractions provide strong support for tourism development and county-level economic development.

For example, in Lintao County, located in Dingxi City, Gansu Province, Xizhou Ming Garden, a scenic spot based on distinctive traditional culture, was grandly opened on May Day. Utilizing the Chinese courtyard garden landscape resources in the park, a new model for revitalizing historical and cultural resources was explored. The first national real time performance show with the theme of Diao Chan, "Reproducing Diao Chan," produced by Vanyee Culture, quickly gained popularity, helping to achieve dual growth in tourist traffic and total revenue on May Day in Lintao County.

From a deeper perspective, the underlying logic behind the popularity of county-level tourism is still the change in tourist demand. I agree with a highly praised response from the internet about the essence of travel. Travel pursues a sense of freedom, which is very scarce in daily life. We are all constrained by various things in society, and you need to be yourself or the image of yourself in the public. However, in a foreign land, you can completely ignore being "you", no longer value the destination of the trip, but the purpose of the trip, choose a place you like, experience "small and beautiful" and "exquisite" things, and give yourself a sense of relaxation.

For example, the filming location of "My Altay" is Habahe County, where the boundless grasslands and free and unrestrained life are something we have never seen before, and it is also a life in our fantasy; There are also more and more waterfall cafés hidden deep among the mountains, forests, and trees in the countryside, which are the secret realm of time and space for us to empty our minds on weekends; And the "novel and interesting" village café that emerges from the corner of the small county town is a healing space for us to self heal after work.

Therefore, whether from the supply side, demand side, or national level, a new era of mass tourism with market sinking and demand upgrading has arrived. So in this context, is it true that the winning rate of "overtaking on bends" in small county towns that are hidden in snow and not well-known is very high? Actually, that's not the case. Let's first take a look at the factors that determine this winning rate:

Factor one is the thinking and strategy for developing county-level tourism. The government and enterprises are the main targets, and their ideas and strategies must be unified. This is the prerequisite for winning the battle. The key is to closely follow the overall direction of urban cultural and tourism brands, and formulate strategies that are tailored to local conditions and in line with one's own development. If you really don't have a clear idea, then learn from the already popular county tourism cases, such as Pingtan County in Fuzhou, and plan to launch boutique tourist routes to island destinations, promoting scenic spots and scenic spots to form a chain of beads and connect to each other, and promoting the rapid expansion of county tourism.

Factor two, whether the urban cultural characteristics have differentiation. Every city has its unique historical, cultural, and local characteristics, which are valuable resources for attracting tourists. You can compare and examine whether your city's cultural and urban characteristics are prominent. If there is no obvious differentiation, in the subsequent process of resource development and project planning, you must have a product differentiation mindset to create tourism products with cultural heritage and competitiveness. Taking Pingtan County in Fuzhou as an example, with its beautiful coastal scenery, it has launched immersive cultural and tourism new formats such as "Starry Sea · Mirror Sand" and "Planet Summoning". "Chasing a Blue Tear" has created a tourism boom in Pingtan County, with over 100 million exposures on social media.

Factor three, whether there are enough bullets to fire the first shot. Cities and scenic spots should deepen the concept of "co construction of scenery and city, sharing of hosts and guests", and focus on comprehensive self-improvement and self innovation around external environment, public services, comprehensive management, etc., continuously launching new products, new formats, and new scenes, and creating a full field and full cycle tourism development model of "scenery in all seasons, and scenery for all". Let tourists come and return with great joy.

Factor four, knowing how to make good use of the double-edged sword of "internet flow". In the era of internet flow, small county towns need to learn how to use this sharp sword well. The reason is very simple. For example, if your product is still being polished, you can focus your resources on product research and development. When the product is close to perfection, you can concentrate your resources on internet flow and create a good reputation, which is the sustainable development force of urban tourism. However, many places have exposed many hard wounds after the explosion, giving tourists a "buyer show" experience, which is not worth the loss in the end.

Factor five, whether the transportation infrastructure is complete. The opening of high-speed rail and the construction of roads are essential conditions for the development of county-level tourism. For example, one of the most popular tourist destinations in the county is Wuyuan. There are more than ten daily trains from Nanchang to Wuyuan County, and on May Day, the county receives 101000 tourists. The convenience of transportation is essential for carrying such a large passenger flow.

The spring of county-level tourism has arrived, and every small county should make every effort to overtake on bends. As for the success rate, it depends on how to seize the opportunity and make this fire burn and thrive.


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