Representations of the past in service of India’s growing wellness industry
Relative to a global perspective, various national wellness (tourism) markets vary with regard to the development and maturity of the industry. East Asia, particularly Japan, has been a favourite destination for people to rejuvenate their bodies, minds and souls. Compared to India’s wellness market, which is in a formative-growth stage and forecasted to be valued at 6 billion dollars by 2023, it is relatively small when compared to the global wellness industry, which is valued at over 4 trillion dollars. Still, this presents many opportunities for growth. This is particularly so when considering how the global industry and the smaller Indian segment have a similar CAGR of around 6–8%. There are many ways to think about wellness, specifically wellness tourism, which includes inner and physical wellness. This presentation focuses on aspects of yoga tourism and compares both domestic and foreign arrivals and explores how both rely on a particular form of branding through intangible heritage, different representations of the past are used to create consumer demand. Both, however, intend to create affective desire. It is through creating emotional bonds toward imaginative consumption that the communicative strategies of wellness tourism occurs. Furthermore, this presentation intends to contrast and compare the communication strategies used between enticing international tourists to India and domestic tourism by comparing the Incredible!ndia, #MyIndiaMyTrips and #15DestinationChallenge tourism campaigns.