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  • Passenger Experience
22 November 2023

Unlocking Brazil's Tourism Potential with Data-Driven Strategies

Destination Marketing Organizations (DMOs) are redefining success through data-driven strategies that attract more visitors to their destinations. Embratur, Brazil's Tourist Board, is a prime example, demonstrating how reliable data on passenger behavior can revolutionize the industry.

An interview with Dr. Mariana Aldrigui, Head of Research and Data Intelligence Management at Embratur.

It’s quality data or nothing

Like many industries, accurate data has become an increasingly valuable asset for forward-thinking tourism professionals. Traveler behavior is changing faster than ever, and tourism organizations must be dynamic when nurturing existing markets and developing new ones that drive business forward. Data as a driver in decision-making is a consistent trend throughout the tourism industry. However, it’s particularly vital in growing markets like Brazil, where political shifts in the country have given rise to new opportunities that leading tourism organizations wish to take full advantage of.


“I see tourism as a force for change in Brazil,” explains Dr. Mariana Aldrigui, Head of Research and Data Intelligence Management at Embratur, Brazil’s Tourist Board.  

“When you try to understand tourism broadly and compare it with other economic activities, either you have quality data or nothing.”

Tourism is a force for economic growth

For Dr. Aldrigui and her team, data is a universal language that communicates new opportunities for the country’s tourism and economic growth. “We’re not just looking at bringing in millions of passengers. We’re looking to bring in billions in money,” says Dr. Aldrigui.

To bring in that money, the Embratur team uses data to mine for new patterns and opportunities that could help the country diversify its offerings to a unique variety of travelers.

For example, many would assume that most travelers coming to Brazil are there to visit Rio.  However, the data shows that many international visitors are coming to the country on business trips thanks to Brazil’s innovative leadership in the tech, biotech, and agricultural centers.

It’s not just where you land but where you visit

Many business travelers enjoy their time in the country so much that they return for leisure. While these tourists may arrive in one of the country’s leading tourist destinations, like Rio or São Paulo, data also indicates they are keen to explore additional locales once they arrive.

Embratur’s data analysis has also identified where many tourists are coming from, whether from other South American countries or the US. 

“We are also trying to define a timeline where each country or each group of countries will come, which gives us a good indication as to when we should deploy specific actions when it comes to marketing.” explains Dr. Aldrigui.

Deploying those specific marketing tactics comes down to connecting the dots that map out consumer behavior.  To do this, the Embratur team must identify travel agents promoting and issuing tickets to Brazil and provide solid business cases to local DMOs that identify the countries and clientele worth courting.

Employ the power of accurate ticketing data

Given the time, energy, and expense of building marketing strategies that engage suitable agents, the accuracy of the data used is essential. For organizations like Embratur, having reliable ticketing data from a neutral third party - like IATA’s Global Agency Pro (GAP) - is the kind of database the organization can rely upon with confidence.


“When I came to Embratur, I understood that specific databases weren’t just important, they were actually vital.  We needed the data to understand where we were, how we could work, and where we could recover from previous markets. IATA Global Agency Pro (GAP) demystifies where people have been. It gives you a very granular kind of data that would give us a special perspective. It’s the  information needed to make informed decisions when developing marketing strategies.” Dr. Aldrigui explains. 

GAP allows users to look at historical ticketing data and make future projections. Using databases like GAP, DMOs can analyze the necessary information to see what influences drive sales and identify the specific agents making those sales. For Embratur, this ensures that Brazil’s tourism organizations are making informed, data-backed decisions when developing their marketing strategies, as Dr. Aldrigui highlights —

“Our goal is to make this data easily accessible and understandable for all stakeholders in our country and our industry.  We want to foster healthy collaborations between DMOs in our country so we can create unique tourist experiences that show our value to the world.” 

Access to accurate and comprehensive information is more challenging than one might think.  Public databases will only provide half the picture regarding tourists’ behavior and travel choices.  Creating an infrastructure within your organization that includes reliable data sources proves essential when trying to stay competitive in an ever-changing industry.

Stay competitive in the era of digital tourism

Embratur’s focus on data-backed tourism strategies reflects the ubiquity of data analysis within the industry.  What may have been a trend only a few years ago is now an essential part of any successful DMO's approach to tourism marketing. With the rise of online travel agencies and new travel startups looking to innovate the industry, accurate travel data is becoming more relied upon when making critical business decisions to expand any destination’s market.

“Brazil has lost market share to competitors using data. We needed the right intelligence to stay competitive and grow your market.  You will never grow if you don’t have data and merely rely on old assumptions.” explains Dr. Aldrigui.

Thanks to Embratur’s new data-backed approach to destination marketing, Brazil is seeing measurable growth in its tourism market, again highlighting the power of accurate travel data.

Interested in travel data for your business?

Visit Global Agency Pro (GAP) for more information.

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