The Career of Mohamed Shafraz Hafiz in the Maldivinian Tourism Industry
Posted on: 8/29/2021, 2:05:10 AM
Pulse Hotels & Resorts' Cluster Head of Digital Marketing & Social Media is Mohamed Shafraz Hafiz. Shafraz was interviewed by our team to learn more about his work in the Maldivian tourism business.
Could you please provide us a brief biographical sketch of yourself?
Pulse Hotels & Resorts' Cluster Head of Digital Marketing & Social Media is Shafraz Ahmed. He's been working in the field of destination marketing since 2004, and he's seen firsthand how the industry's trends change year after year. Prior to joining Pulse, he was the head of digital marketing for Kandima Maldives, where he oversaw the global launch of the Maldives' first lifestyle property.
How did you get your start in the field of digital marketing?
As a graduate of Multimedia Arts, I was compelled to master various aspects of advertising mediums such as TV, Web, Print, Animation, Digital, Audio, and so on. The digital arena, in particular, piqued my curiosity. My first major job chance came from the Tourism Promotion Board, where I worked as a digital marketing consultant. This was back when MySpace was the most popular social media site, and the globe had yet to see the entire digital transformation that we now take for granted.
You are one of the few Maldivian digital marketing professionals operating in the tourism business at the highest level. What's in your opinion, are the causes behind fewer Maldivians working in the tourism industry's digital marketing?
I see a lot of local talent being developed and possibilities being made for them in sales, marketing, and public relations. However, there aren't many Maldivians in the digital world. With the exception of a few local hotel chains, the bulk of international hotel chains already have digital marketing offices and teams in place. This significantly reduces the number of chances available in the local hospitality business.
What role do you think digital marketing will play in tourism marketing in the future?
Digital marketing allows us to reach out to anybody, wherever in the world, with our brands and messages. It has the potential to level the playing field for everyone if properly implemented. It is their individual ingenuity that determines who succeeds. It's difficult to say what will happen next, but there could be a slew of fresh possibilities.
You founded and managed the well-known Maldivian hotel brand Kandima Maldives. Could you tell us about your experience and the major challenges you've encountered?
One of my greatest triumphs was taking Kandima from a local brand to a global presence in just a few years. One of our fundamental brand pillars was being smart about how we did things, which allowed us to quickly incorporate tech-oriented solutions. It was also quite easy for us to do things that were distinctive and out of the usual since we had leaders and directors who recognized the value of digital marketing and were open to new ideas.
You are currently in charge of the digital team for several well-known Maldivian hotel brands, including Nautilus, Baros, Milaidhoo, Kandima, and Nova. How difficult has it been, and what has been your key to success?
What motivates us all is a challenge. It's a challenge when each property is so different and caters to different market segments. This challenge, however, is mitigated when you have a fantastic squad on your side! There is no such thing as individual success; success is the success of the team. We collaborate closely with our ecommerce, revenue, sales, and public relations teams to maximize the impact of every initiative we launch, as well as to help them improve and magnify everything they do.
What advice would you provide to young people who are interested in working in this sector, particularly in digital marketing in the hospitality industry?
Never lose patience or become complacent. Technology changes on a daily basis and is always evolving. Never stop learning, and always be willing to pick up anything new from anyone. Always challenge yourself to go beyond your comfort zones because knowledge is power. You might not succeed. That's OK. Lessons learned from previous experiences help us to become better versions of ourselves in the future. You can't learn without making mistakes.
What are your career goals for the future? In the next 5–10 years, where do you see yourself?
I'd like to see Pulse Hotels & Resorts flourish internationally... and for me to retire to an uninhabited island and sip coconuts. However, only time will tell, to be honest. I don't like to plan too far ahead, but I'm content with where I'm at right now, and I hope to continue to grow with Pulse.