Motswana ko Dubai

The brand is not the different companies or organisations they work for. The brand is Dubai. They all want to give everyone an unforgettable Dubai experience. And that is what makes them the desired tourist’s destination

Money, city lights and everything nice. Dubai is the ultimate playfield for ballers and seekers of opportunities. Everything seems permissible in Dubai; one can be anything and do anything.

Every service provider gets treated you like royalty. I guess they all assume you have money to burn if you are in Dubai.

It is them giving out free DU TOURIST 5G Sim cards loaded with 1GB at immigration for me. Now having experienced 5G in Botswana courtesy of Mascom, I was looking forward to experiencing it everywhere. It was unfortunate that I could not make WhatsApp calls (voice and video) or with any other application. For a city that thrives itself on propelling us into the future it was a little odd but I understood it was/is a security measure.
Walking out of the airport, the first thing I was looking for was a taxi, which I didn’t struggle to find. Just outside the door there was a man showing everyone which taxi to go to (rra buka lol.) The gentleman took my bags, I got into the taxi, gave the driver the hotel address and off we went.

During the ride, he welcomed me to Dubai, asked if I was here for the expo or leisure and proceeded to tell me about the best activities to do while I was here (I actually did 3/5 of what he suggested). The man seamlessly sold Dubai in less than 15 minutes, and I was impressed as a marketer. You know you did a great job when customers willingly affiliate themselves with your brand.

I got to the hotel. The doorman was ready to open the door for me and within a split second a porter was on hand to assist with my bags. Guest relations asked for my name and off I was to my hotel room.

I did not have to ask anything; they already knew what they had to do.
The service is heightened when you go to a restaurant or lounge, from the host welcoming you to them introducing you to your waiter. After taking your order, the host comes to your table at intervals of 8-10 minutes after you’re seated. Not only are they checking on you but serving you your beverage as well. I never had to pour my own drink, and this was the norm at all the places I went to.

This was hands down the best experience I have ever had in a restaurant or lounge! As a woman, it’s the little things that impress the most and my little thing was opening doors and acts of service. As a marketer, it’s the experience with the brand that left me stunned. And this was the same for every other establishment that I visited.

One thing that caught my eye is the rich architecture. Every building is different from the next, with its own unique features. An absolute marvel. The Burj Khalifa gives you a glimpse of this; from the 124th floor I could see the rich architecture in all its glory.
My marketing brain had been ignited from the moment I set my eyes on the first billboard. But what stood out for me the most was the Dubai Expo advertising. There were directional signs at all the main roads and junctions, in every mall you would see either a billboard outside the mall or small signages in shops about expo tickets.

It was the intentionality that caught my attention – this was the biggest event happening in Dubai at the time and they made sure everybody was informed about it. I had not seen one flyer in sight. Instead there are QR codes everywhere about everything you need to know, and after purchasing an item in a store they ask for your number and you instantly get a ‘thank you’ text and more information. Everybody has and is always on their smart phone and marketers ensured to ingratiate themselves with your smart phone activity.
While there is no doubt that the service in Dubai is immaculate, there is one thing that happened in Kiza Restaurant that left me stunned beyond words. Because of the strict alcohol laws in Dubai, you are not allowed to leave the establishment with unfinished or unopened bottles of alcohol. Instead, what Kiza does is give you a card with details of name, number, bottle, no of drinks and validity period.

All I had to do was present this card and my bottle of bubbly was served to me. For sure when the drink finishes, you would want another one (smart move) but it was how they made me feel that made me come back for my drink – safe, important and catered to.
One thing about Dubai: they know, understand and brilliantly implement tourist marketing. Will I go back? Absolutely! And if I do, I will probably spend more since I know there are things yet to be explored.

There are so many things we can learn from Dubai. One thing I can say for sure is that the goal of service providers is experience. Every hotel, restaurant, taxi driver, mall assistance, security and literally everyone, is wired to give a memorable experience.
The brand is not the different companies or organisations they work for. The brand is Dubai. They all want to give everyone an unforgettable Dubai experience. And that is what makes them the desired tourist’s destination.