Petite Performers

Businesses in small towns can attract more customers with a few simple strategies


With over 500 small towns, travellers in South Africa have an endless catalogue of accessible and affordable unique locations and experiences to choose from. In the light of all these choices, small-town tourist partners must make sure their offerings stand out.

Something for everyone

One of the most effective ways to attract local travellers and residents is to create packages that cater specifically to them. South Africans love a good deal, which opens opportunities for businesses in small towns to load deals for customers to find and explore. A top tip for small tourism businesses is to make sure their packages include discounted rates as well as unique experiences designed to appeal to consumers’ interests and preferences. This could be anything from hot air ballooning to a township tour, an afternoon of wine tasting or a quad-biking adventure through the fields – the land around you is your canvas, and you are the artist. For example, a wildlife lodge could offer a package with a guided bush walk, a local cooking class and a visit to a nearby cultural village. Since many locals travel with family, having a family package that includes fun activities for the kids and adults without breaking the bank is a great way to attract customers. Partnering with other local businesses to attract local travellers and residents to your tourist business can be a beneficial business move. This could include restaurants, craft markets and other tourist attractions in the area. Teamwork makes the dream work, so find partners that connect and have a hometown appeal for more comprehensive and attractive offerings for visitors by working together. For example, a winery could partner with a local restaurant to offer a wine and food pairing experience.

Aim for authenticity

Small towns are often rooted in culture and tradition, and many local travellers and residents are looking for authentic experiences that showcase the culture and traditions of the area. Tourism partners can incorporate local culture into their offerings. This could include traditional dances, music, art and visits to local cultural sites and museums. Another way your tourist business can attract more local travellers and residents is by engaging with the local community. This could include hiring staff from the local area, sourcing products and services from local businesses and supporting local charities and initiatives. You can build trust and loyalty among local travellers and residents by demonstrating your commitment to their home. And make sure travellers know about your deals, discounts and packages. Upload packages to tourism platforms and advertise them on social media to raise awareness. Don’t forget to engage with your potential visitors on social media – that is the ultimate word of mouth in a digital world.

Text | Supplied Photography | fivepointsix For more information, go to

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