Looking for Something?
Browsing Category


You Might Be In Tourism If….


… by Sheila Scarborough and Becky McCray

One of the things we love about blogging is the publishing flexibility. You can either go deep into a niche topic, cover a broader field or, heck, “kitchen sink” it with whatever has you fired up at the moment.

We generally advise picking one focus area so readers know what to expect when they seek out your work, but sometimes that means that people skip over really good blogs because they think the insights won’t apply to them.

Our niche area, for example, is tourism – the industry that attempts to attract tourists and visitors to a destination, usually funded by a town, city or region via some sort of tax on your hotel bill.

So what, right? Unless you’re really into that, or a big traveler, why should that interest you if you blog about parenting or history or food or business or technology?

Well, you might be in tourism if….

  • Friends who come to visit your town ask you for “the good places where locals go.” 
  • Out-of-towners ever walk through the doors of your business.
  • You are a food enthusiast, artist, crafter, microbrewer, winemaker or anyone who makes things that are bought by visitors to your town.
  • You’re involved with economic development, historic preservation, downtown development/Main Street programs, a museum, a historical society, your local Chamber of Commerce or state/local government.
  • Your town is located on a heritage highway or scenic byway.
  • You write reviews and tips for your local restaurants, coffee shops, stores, art galleries, etc on Yelp, Foursquare, Gowalla or TripAdvisor.
  • You’re a gardener who supports a popular local botanical garden, nature preserve or park.
  • You’re a meeting planner who needs to know where to find good conference or meeting venues.
  • You’re a Civil War or Renaissance Faire re-enactor in your local area.
  • You upload cool photos of your town to your local city government or Visitors Bureau Flickr Group Pool.

….and finally, you are involved in tourism if anyone has ever stopped you in your town and said something like, “We’re visiting and need directions to get to ____. Can you help?” or if they’ve ever handed you their camera and asked if you wouldn’t mind taking a photo of them in front of one of your local landmarks.

Does any of the above sound like you?

Or would you rather just attend no-BS BlogWorld sessions on creating better video content, integrating social media into your overall marketing plan, zero-budget social communications or social photography like Foodspotting and photo walks?

Either way, sounds like you’d enjoy this year’s Tourism and Travel Track, Room 150C Thursday through Saturday.

And hey; take a good photo with that visitor’s camera, okay?

Becky McCray and Sheila Scarborough are BlogWorld’s Tourism Track leaders; this year they’re double-billed with an outstanding Travel Track run by Mary Jo Manzanares.

Becky and Sheila co-founded Tourism Currents: online education that helps make sense of social media for destination marketing. Keep up with them on @TourismCurrents.

Image Source

RoundUp: Fall Tourism Tech Conferences


… by Sheila Scarborough

The fall conference season is always hopping, but the embarrassment of riches means that some tough decisions must be made about which events to attend (unless you have an unlimited budget and lots of people, so you can send someone to all of them. Right. We didn’t think so….)

Although we’re obviously biased towards the BlogWorld tourism track, we recognize that it may not work for everyone, so here’s our best effort to help you decide who to send where …

If you want maximum opportunity to connect with a wide variety of bloggers and other online publishers, plus attend focused educational panels and hear industry speakers on social media for tourism, then BlogWorld and New Media Expo West in Los Angeles, CA November 3-5 is your best bet.

Sessions will be intermediate level (with other tracks having beginner options) so #BWELA is the place to send your staff members who are somewhat new to the social Web (zero to 18 months.) We are also offering “speed dating” appointments between tourism/hospitality organizations and bloggers. There is at least one dedicated hospitality speaker for those who run resorts or other lodging.

Sample speakers: Caroline Bean from the Greater Philadelphia Tourism Marketing Corp., Shanna Smith Snyder from the Abilene (TX) CVB, Brian Matson from the Fargo-Moorhead CVB and Doug Anweiler from Authentic Seacoast Resorts in Nova Scotia.

Who should go? BlogWorld is perfect for your staff networking/schmoozing fiend who is also getting really good at social media (or who wants to get to that level.) Don’t forget – discount pricing (50% off) ends on Thursday!

If you want to mix it up with tech- and social media-savvy tourism peers at a small conference of the very geekiest CVBs, DMOs and Tourist Boards, then the Symposium on Social Media in Tourism (SoMeT) in Tunica, MS November 9-12 would work for you. This is where your communications person goes who is WAY ahead of the rest of the office, and who needs to stay at his or her “A” game for the benefit of your destination.

Sessions are advanced and geared to those who execute your strategy. Very “inside baseball.” No significant hospitality component.

Sample speakers: Katie Cook from the Austin CVB, Tom Martin from Converse Digital and Anne Hornyak from Sparkloft Media.

Who should go? SoMeT is great for your geekiest staffer who was on Foursquare and slinging QR codes months before anyone else.

If you’re looking for high-level discussions of travel and tourism technology as a whole, consider the eTourism Summit in San Francisco, CA September 29-30. Lots of strategy and integration discussions. A bit more international flavor than the others, looking at technology beyond social media.

Sample speakers: Google Travel head Neil Coleman, empowerMINT Director Christine Shimasaki and Head of Consumer Engagement and Marketing for Tourism Ireland Bryan Harte.

Who should go? eTourism Summit is a good idea for your Director who is trying to keep that 30,000 foot, integrated marketing view amongst insanely rapid tech and social media changes.

So, divide and conquer if you must, but try to take advantage of as many fall learning opportunities as your budget will allow (and we sure hope that includes BlogWorld!)

This post is by Sheila Scarborough, co-founder with Becky McCray of Tourism Currents, online education in social media for tourism and hospitality. Together they are the track leaders for the BlogWorld tourism track.

Image Source

Learn About NMX


Recent Comments