"Sončni vzhod" tourist agency

The project of establishing a marketing model for the local offer

Incoming agency

The broader area of Styria (the area of Slovenska Bistrica, Maribor, Slovenske gorice, Prlekija) is poorly recognised and promoted from the point of view of tourism; even though numerous tourist products have been created in the framework of various projects, they have still not gotten of the ground in practice. Due to the providers’ desire to market themselves and the existing tourist products, we have established a model for the marketing of tourist products, i.e. an incoming agency.

This incoming agency is the result of the operation “Establishing a marketing model for the local offer through an incoming agency” which is being performed within the 2014-2020 Rural Development Programme of the Republic of Slovenia, sub-measure M19.3 (Preparation and implementation of the co-operation activity of the local action group). The operation is co-financed by the European Agricultural Fund for Rural Development: Europe investing in rural areas.

Description of the operation

In the initial phase, we analysed the existing offer in the field and invited various stakeholders (providers, tourist institutes, owners of cultural and natural heritage, relevant public institutions, other interested stakeholders) to participate in the project. An important part of the operation was to set up a standard for the participation in the project, where we also emphasised activities for senior citizens, environmental protection, nature conservation, the use of local products, local self-sufficiency, and awareness of the identity of this area. Most partners are already familiar with the area and consider it suitable for inclusion and networking.

With the help of external associates, we analysed existing integrated tourist products (ITPs) and developed new ones, by involving providers and interested stakeholders in the design of the marketing offer. We introduced the stakeholders to modern trends in the field of tourism, trained guides, presented good practice systems, and jointly identified the premium products used to build our visibility. For the promotion, we designed a sales website, prepared printed materials, and optimised the available digital information.

We have also invited a partner from Romania, who comes from a similar environment as Slovenske gorice, to participate in the project and exchange experiences and good practices.

On 25 February 2021, we received a decision from the Agency for Agricultural Markets and Rural Development (the ARSKTRP) on the approval of the operation which is co-financed by the European Agricultural Fund for Rural Development in the amount of up to EUR 99,698.70 and which will unfold in two phases, lasting from 1 July 2021 to 25 February 2024.