Building a Better Tour

5 Must-Read Books for Tour & Activity Hosts

Post by
Samantha Hardcastle

January 27, 2022

5 Must-Read Books for Tour & Activity Hosts

Whether you’re in a slower season or the pandemic is still impacting your business, now is a great time to sit down and focus on ways to improve business in 2022. Consuming information has become so much easier over the last decade, with audio books and the ability to take your kindle everywhere with you. 

And even if you are busy right now, committing to reading or listening to one chapter a day and taking action on what you have learned is an important part of every entrepreneur’s life. As business owners, complacency can be our worst enemy! 

Here are some of our favorite books that we believe every tour & activity host should read. Each one brings something different to the table and will help you make great strides in your business. 

Blue Ocean Strategy/Shift

In this book, the concept of the ‘blue ocean’ is introduced. A blue ocean is an uncontested market space, where competition is not a concern. In fact, by creating your blue ocean, you are making the competition irrelevant. The ideas presented in the book are around creating and capturing NEW demand and taking action in pursuit of differentiation. 

This book is ideal for any tour & activity host struggling with a lot of competition in their area or having a difficult time convincing travelers that their experience is worth traveling out for. It will show you how to escape the blood-red ocean where you are vying for the same traveler dollars as your neighboring competitors. 

The Renaissance Soul

Do you consider yourself a multi-passionate business owner and wish you could create an experience that merges more of your passions together? This book shows you how. After all, so many people start a tourism business born out of passion. But oftentimes we are told we have to ‘pick one thing’ and that’s not true at all.

In fact, if you recall our recent article on creating a multi-concept tour & activity, this is the main premise. All of your interests can be integrated into your business! The Renaissance Soul will help you see how exactly you can go about this. 


Is there a formula for why things catch on? According to this book, absolutely. Contagious will walk you through why some ideas spread like wildfire while others fail to take off. The author walks you through the 6 STEPPS to harness social influence and word of mouth to get your business to catch on. 

STEPPS stands for Social Currency; Triggers; Emotion; Public; Practical Value; Stories. The premise of Contagious suggests that people talk about things that make them look good, make them feel good, and love sharing about these things. But of course, there’s so much more to it than this. Give the book a read – it’s loaded with examples that will help you begin to spark your own contagious idea! 

The Art of Gathering

This should be required reading for any tourism host! When people come together, especially strangers, there is always a chance for discomfort and misunderstanding. The author of the Art of Gathering, Priya Parker, is trained in the field of conflict resolution. She has taken her years of experience and distilled them down into this great book for all industries. 

She gives you actionable tips for making people feel warm, welcome, and comfortable in a new environment (your tour or activity). Her advice is great for taking a gathering from lackluster to joyful & engaging. It will give you a lot to think about as you reflect on the ways you engage and interact with your guests. 

The Science of Why

If you have ever wanted to get into the mind of your dream customer (who hasn’t?) then this book is for you. In The Science of Why, we learn that every action consumers take has a psychological motivation underlying it… and what exactly those motivations are. The author takes us through the aspirations and frustrations that fuel consumers’ dreams and desires.

As you go through this book, you will begin to see your own business in a new light. You will learn how to tap into consumers’ emotions, their self-concept, and leverage this awareness to shape your experience and drive more bookings for your business in a non-manipulative way. 

As business owners, we often wear many hats. Understanding all these different topics will help us create something that travelers actually desire. Let your curiosity be your guide and take advantage of the wisdom of those who have come before you. You don’t have to do it all yourself, and learning from other people’s experience will help you immensely as this industry continuous to evolve and grow. 

Is there a book that you love that has helped you transform your business? Share about it in our free Facebook group

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