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Harnessing Digital Marketing for Cultural Heritage: Tools and a Case Study from Rural Thailand

    In an increasingly digital world, the promotion of cultural heritage, especially in rural areas, requires innovative marketing strategies. Let’s examine the most effective digital marketing tools and presents a case study from Thailand, illustrating the successful application of these tools in a rural setting.

    The digital age offers a plethora of tools for promoting cultural heritage. Social media platforms like Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Snapchat have emerged as powerful channels for engaging with communities. Their effectiveness in marketing various events, programs, and exhibits related to cultural heritage is unparalleled. Digital marketing not only provides low-cost branding opportunities but also allows for a broader reach, making it an ideal strategy for highlighting the unique aspects of cultural heritage across the globe.

    Phygital Approach in Sapphaya, Thailand – In Sapphaya, a rural community in Thailand, a unique ‘phygital’ approach to cultural heritage tourism was adopted in response to the challenges posed by the Covid-19 crisis. This approach amalgamated physical and digital marketing communications, creating a holistic strategy that enhanced the value and perception of their cultural heritage tourism product. This strategy demonstrates the importance of integrating the physical and digital aspects of cultural heritage promotion. Key to its success was grassroots engagement and community-based management, ensuring that the planning, development, and implementation of this strategy were deeply rooted in the community’s needs and aspirations.

    The digital marketing of cultural heritage offers a promising avenue for rural areas to showcase their unique heritage and attract tourism. The success of the phygital approach in Sapphaya, Thailand, serves as an inspiring model for other rural communities. By leveraging digital tools effectively and ensuring community participation, rural areas can enhance the visibility and appreciation of their cultural heritage, contributing to sustainable tourism and economic development.

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