Cancun is Mexico's main tourist destination, entirely conceived, planned, built, and managed to offer the best services to tourists from all over the world, and its importance lies in the fact that before Cancun there was no precedent in the world of a tourist center developed from scratch. Cancun was born on paper at the end of the 1960s almost hand in hand with the world tourism boom that characterized the two previous decades and with the development of marketing.
Its beginnings were sketches in bankers' offices in Mexico City, convinced that tourism was the answer to the country's natural need for foreign exchange, but it would take several years and presidential administrations before the plan became the reality of what is today Cancun, one of the most important tourist destinations in the world. If its ideologists were bankers, the first promoters were politicians and tourism infrastructure officials.
It was not until 1973 that an advertising campaign began, the icon of which was a poster of a deep footprint on Cancun's fine beaches. Many of the early promotional efforts were based on highlighting the attractions of the destination and few were dedicated to analyzing and understanding the needs of the potential market. This characteristic of the communication strategy has remained throughout most of the promotional campaigns, which do not reflect previous studies of consumer analysis, improvisation has been what has marked the advertising efforts in the destination.
The history of Cancun is very short, 50 years ago it was an island of fishermen whose population was located in what is known as Puerto Juarez. The Mexican government and the Tourism Infrastructure Promotion Fund planned in detail the creation of a tourist city on a slender strip of sand surrounded by the Caribbean Sea and the Nichupté Lagoon. Today, Cancun is a reality that is home to major hotel chains, hundreds of restaurants, and top-quality tourist services. Cancun not only changed the physiognomy of the Caribbean and the flow of tourist currents, but it also did something even more important, it modified the conception of tourist activity.
The Cancun Hotel Association (AHC), in its tourism barometer, points out that Cancun, one of the Integrally Planned Centers, is the most important tourist destination in the country and one of the best in Latin America; it has boosted the development of the State and together with the Riviera Maya, the young sister of this destination, they are responsible for contributing more than 33.77% of the national tourist GDP, that is, more than a third of the foreign exchange that comes into the country from tourism. The first publicists and promoters of Cancun were the officials of the Bank of Mexico who, in addition to conceiving the idea, led by Antonio Ortiz Mena, promoted the project.
The promotion of Cancun, which began with the Presidency of the Republic and the Bank of Mexico, has been maturing with the product, today the governmental efforts join the increasingly professional efforts of the private initiative, to jointly offer more consistent campaigns with a wider spectrum and that generate positive feelings towards the destination. Since the creation of the Visitors and Convention Bureau at the end of 1996, it has been in charge of promoting Cancun in all international forums, as well as advertising efforts in cooperation with wholesalers, airlines, and the Mexican Tourism Promotion Council, inviting specialized media to generate reports and coordinating important promotional efforts in the area of groups, throughout these years it has launched several advertising campaigns.
During the first four years of Cancun's existence, the number of visitors to the destination was composed mainly of national visitors, increasing from 72,200 national visitors in 1975 to 196,100 visitors in 1979, with an annual growth rate of 28.38%. Foreign visitors went from 27,300 in 1975 to 199,700 in 1979, growing at an annual rate of 64.46%, that is, slightly more than double the rate of nationals, which meant that as of 1980 the proportion of foreigners surpassed that of nationals, a situation that has not changed to this day.
In recent years, the Institute of Tourism Research (IIT) of La Salle University Cancun, has permanently established the project "Characterization of the Tourist in the Mexican Caribbean"; studying variables such as income, age, mode of travel, among others of utmost importance. One of the most important results provided by the aforementioned study, as well as others carried out, is the origin of visitors, which shows the historical predominance that the U.S. market has had in recent years in the influx of visitors to Cancun.
Nowadays, the high competition in the tourist markets, motivated by globalization, forces destinations (and in general any company involved in the tourist activity) to generate necessary strategies that allow them to have greater participation in the tourist demand. A fundamental part of such strategies is marketing; therefore, not having relevant information on the destination's main tourist market would result in the lack of inclusion of the changes that the international market has undergone and is undergoing, which would irrefutably jeopardize the success of the promotional campaigns implemented.
The Office of Tourism Promotion has hired new advertising agencies to promote Cancun's corporate image. Since its inception, it has coordinated an important agenda of visits to wholesale agencies, participating in trade shows, tourism caravans, and international fairs. It is very important to reposition Cancun as the main beach tourist destination in Latin America and to improve its position as the most important tourist center in the world.
Changing the image of a "spring break" destination to a renovated resort, luxury and glamour among tourists with high purchasing power, people who like destinations with the services and amenities of a mature place, interested in getting more from their vacation than sun and beach, willing to interact with a culture different from their own, more than 50% will range between 35 and 50 years, with incomes over 50 thousand dollars a year, being newlyweds, families, singles, with sophisticated tastes and looking for unique experiences in an environment of high security.
Cancun is the gateway to the Mayan world and the Mexican Caribbean, located 1 hour from Miami and 3 hours from New York, offers more than 30 thousand hotel rooms ranging from 4 and 5 stars, with the option of affordable hotels. In addition to the beauty of the Caribbean Sea, Cancun offers the legacy of one of the most outstanding Mesoamerican cultures, the Mayan culture. Cancun is also a city with a splendid infrastructure with options for restless tourists who wish to practice golf, sport fishing, diving, shopping, or a gastronomic tour.
How to put Cancun in the minds of consumers?
With a lot of promotion, public relations, and bringing opinion leaders from specialized media; as well as journalists, events, and media that generate diffusion, such as Cancun's presence in Spain's Professional Soccer League, which has the largest audience at an international level, and a great job of diffusion is being done there with excellent results. Many efforts are currently being made to consolidate Cancun as a unique brand in the world. The 'Cancun' brand strengthens its projection worldwide.
The geographical location of Quintana Roo allows excellent connectivity with the world in which Cancun's international airport receives direct flights from most cities. Cancun's advertising in other countries is homogeneous and what sometimes changes are some sequences, depending on what people are looking for. The promotion is spread in electronic and printed media and sometimes in products. For example, in Asia they advertise golf, gastronomy, and culture; in the United States and Canada, they advertise family, sun, and beach. For example, the Mayan World campaign (change of era through the Mayan calendar) and was handled in all the countries where the Cancun brand is located and even now there are still sequels of that campaign. The CANCUN® brand is indeed one of the best known Mexican brands in the world, along with CORONA, BIMBO, and CEMEX, due to the important promotion that the Cancun Tourism Promotion Trust has carried out throughout the world massively and uninterruptedly for a little more than 15 years.
The CANCUN® brand is indeed one of the best known Mexican brands in the world, along with CORONA, BIMBO, and CEMEX, due to the important promotion that the Cancun Tourism Promotion Trust has carried out throughout the world massively and uninterruptedly for a little more than 15 years.
But going back to the origin, the creation of the Public Trust for Tourism Promotion of Cancun was published in the Official Gazette of the State of Quintana Roo on December 3, 1996, so a few days later the Trust contract was signed with the National Bank of Mexico. The design of the CANCUN® trademark was approved in September 1997 during the Eighth Meeting of the Technical Committee of the Trust, and the award was granted to a Spanish company, which presented an attractive design based on the Mayan archaeological vestiges of southeastern Mexico, naming its proposal CANCUN. THE MAGIC WORD®. Thus, on November 27, 1998, at 10:20 a.m., the application for registration of the trademark CANCUN. LA PALABRA MAGICA & DISEÑO, before the Mexican Institute of Industrial Property, began a new legal stage in the exploitation of the most important tourist brand in Mexico.