Backpacking, Diving and Culture Market Profiles for the South Pacific

Acorn was commissioned by the South Pacific Tourism Organisation (SPTO), which represents 18 countries and island destinations in the South Pacific region, to produce detailed market profiles of backpacking, diving, and cultural tourism in the South Pacific region.

The Brief

The objective of the research was to provide practical and specific advice for micro-SME’s in the tourism industry on how to develop suitable tourism products to meet the expectations of its consumers and help diversify the region’s marketing mix.  The niche markets of backpacking, diving and culture were selected as they were identified as the major growth markets for the tourism industry.

Our Solution

Research for each report involved comprehensive secondary research from a wide range of reliable sources worldwide that included industry experts, tourism organisations, stakeholders and tour operators, along with a number of other key sources.  A wide range of quantitative and qualitative data was compiled for each niche, backed up by trusted sources.

Primary research in the form of more than 50 face-to-face and telephone consultations was conducted with both specialist and general tour operators from the major source markets, including Australia, New Zealand, Europe, North America and Japan, who offered key insights into the market from both the company and clients’ perspectives. 

As a consequence, Acorn was able to build up a complete and detailed overview of each niche market in the region to help SPTO advise SME’s develop suitable and sustainable tourism products for future growth.


Combining the findings from both primary and secondary research sources, a thorough overview of current tourism provision to the South Pacific within each niche was produced.  Detailed findings included a complete understanding of the current market including arrivals and market characteristics data. 

Based on the research findings, specific consumer expectations for each niche were profiled and the region’s strengths, weaknesses, threats and opportunities were outlined. 

Consequently, Acorn was able to identify specific areas for product improvement and development, and recommended other marketing initiatives and promotional channels that could be exploited.