An introduction to inclusive marketing

A family having a picnic on a beach with their dog. One of the family members has Down's Syndrome.Working for a tourism business, or owning one yourself, you probably have plenty of marketing experience and know what works best for you. Do you also know how to market yourselves in an accessible way to people with health conditions and impairments, including disabled people?

What is inclusive marketing?

Inclusive marketing considers diversity in all its forms and reflects real people in the real world. It ensures all customers - regardless of any access requirements or specific characteristics – feel welcomed to a particular business. Inclusive marketing benefits everybody, regardless of age, appearance, gender identity, ethnicity or ability. Everyone has access requirements and preferences, not just disabled people. By ensuring your business is accessible and marketed inclusively, you will automatically reach a much broader and more diverse audience, including those with health conditions and impairments.

Why should I make my marketing more inclusive?

In this country 1 in 5 people are disabled (Department for Work and Pensions). Many of your existing customers are likely to be in that group but you may not realise this. Impairments such as hearing loss, arthritis, epilepsy and autism are not visible and some customers won’t disclose these on booking.

Did you know?

Your customer base is also getting older and with age comes the increasing chance of health conditions such as poorer eyesight and back problems. As of 2020, the average age in the UK is 40.5 years, and by 2040, nearly one in seven people are projected to be aged over 75 (Office for National Statistics). 

The accessible tourism market in England is worth around £15 billion. The good news for businesses wanting to target this market is that demand for accessible accommodation and activities outstrips the current supply. Disabled travellers tend to be loyal as - with fewer businesses catering to their requirements - they often return to places that do.

Read more about the value of the accessible tourism market.