Promoting the Slow City concept as a sustainability strategy
Promoting a destination becomes more important due to destination competition in the tourism sector. All destinations need to establish new concepts and strategies to present and sell their services. Small towns adopting the Slow City model for local development and tourism improvement differentiate themselves from other destinations with their authentic local identities, their hospitalities and their cultural differences. The network members both take advantage of the recognition of the Slow City brand known globally, guaranteeing that they will comply with the terms and conditions of the network and obtain the opportunity to access vast knowledge of other cities within the network. Slow Cities should develop their own marketing strategies as a new and unique product. Different marketing approaches in sustainable development strategies according to market trends and changing customer preferences need to be created for Slow Cities. Local inhabitants, local administrations and tourism institutions should support creative marketing facilities to develop brand management and competitive marketing strategies of Slow Cities. New destinations should be presented in the tourism market to contribute the future of sustainable tourism in Turkey.
The Slow City is a new concept for Turkey’s tourism market and understanding, and implementing this important concept will contribute to marketing of candidate cities in the future. This chapter examines the Slow City movement, along with its history and organization, and presents the case of Seferihisar, which became the first Slow City of Turkey in 2009. As a Slow City member, Seferihisar has been evaluated for how to use destination marketing, destination development and sustainable tourism. The evaluations reveal how such a model focuses on market segmentation, marketing mix, branding the destination, image of destination, positioning and marketing communication strategies of Slow Cities.