Just tell us all about your greatest effort in 2017 or 2018.
Who knew? Iowa City is one of the three most literary cities on earth (*and the only one in the USA), in a league with Edinburgh, Scotland and Melbourne, Australia…so says UNESCO. But there’s more––like college football, foodie heaven and medical tourism.
Utilizing predictive data science, billions of search and booking intent signals, and real-time analysis of anonymous traveler profiles, Sojern identified those people in-market for travel to or around the Iowa City area.
Think Iowa City, Strategic America and Sojern produced a multi-channel digital marketing campaign that inspired nearly 20,000 visits to the DMOs targeted webpages.
- Drove 509 hotel bookings and 1,463 flight confirmations and an estimated $500K in traveler spend to the Iowa City area
- Built brand awareness with engaging video and native formats, the latter of which achieved a CTR of 0.99%, nearly 10X higher than that of standard rich media.
Related: Iowa City Rebranding (Corridor Business 6/2/2017)
Everybody’s in a different demographic bucket, right? Personalization is everything, right?
So, how do tourism boards entice travelers with just a single marketing campaign? Here are six marketing campaigns with differing approaches, and the reasons why they work(ed).
- Discover Los Angeles
- Tour Spain
- Pure Michigan
- Visit Sweden
- Hong Kong Tourism Board
To read more from eConsultancy, a London-based digital marketing and advertising firm, click here.
Related: “‘Hallå? Sweden Speaking’: Risky Promotion Introduced in First Country to Get Its Own Phone Number” – The Travel Vertical, 4/11/2016
You guys have been busy! Our Listening Tour (The Travel Vertical, 4/24/2018) is uncovering lots of fascinating, innovative stuff. Here’s some of what’s new for 2018 and more details from the provisional agenda for Day One. Day Two to follow later this month.
Registration is open. Hope to see you in San Francisco.
Get a first look at the 2018 eTourism Summit provisional agenda here:
October 9, 2018
2018 eTourism Summit Provisional Agenda | Subject to Change
Note: Invited, not yet confirmed = ( i)
Workshop Option 1: Facebook Guerilla Marketing: Curriculum Leader: Dennis Yu, CEO, Blitz Metrics
Workshop Option 2: Storytelling on Your Phone. Ideal for DIY’ers and back by popular demand, register early for the eTS smartphone Video Storytelling Workshop. Teams of four are dropped off at iconic locations in San Francisco to shoot, then edit raw footage into a one-minute video. (This year we will use industry leaders and professional editors. Limited to 24 participants at $495 pp (includes equipment).
Workshop Option 3: The Great Vetted Vendor PitchFest: 15-Minute Updates from New Vendors. Exercise your mind, as former “Bright Shiny New Objects” alumni update us with their latest offerings; eTourism Summit sponsors reveal “What’s New” for 2018/19 and innovative tech providers, (each referred a member of the eTS community), present in back-to-back 15-minute sessions. Ideal for those who would like compare and evaluate new vendors for 2019. FREE for eTS attending companies.
Workshop Option 4: Top 20 Things Your Newly Hired Digital Staff Need to Know. Chances are your new digital staff has experience in social media or digital marketing for an e-commerce company, but travel marketing has many layers and nuances that they won’t know about. In this session, led by eTS board members who have hired digital staff, you’ll learn the Top 20 things you need to know to be effective out of the gate. Topics include: Managing communities, vocal committees, outsourced v. in-house, and basics around influencer marketing, social media marketing, paid and earned media, etc.
October 10, 2018
Track One: Content Marketing:
9:00-10:00 am: What’s Your Content Strategy for 2019? Three Tourism Marketers discuss their forward strategies:
- The evolution of your video strategy
- The evolution of your Influencer strategy
- The evolution of your Facebook/Instagram strategy
10:00-11:00 am: Show and Tell: Video Marketing and Influencers
Visit Franklin Films. Visit Franklin, a suburb of Nashville, TN, has established Visit Franklin Films to drive more engagement using a completely different approach. Establishing a public access TV “mockumentary” style using in-studio talk shows, man on the street interviews, and partnering with local theatre products is part of their new video strategy. Where to find fans that will be most likely to shar? Identifying fans at local festivals, incentivizing them through contests that maximizes engagement and sharing.Presenter: Josh Collins, Visit Franklin (i)
Visit LEX Finds a Sequel to Horses Filming Horses. Creating videos by mixing Lexington, KY brand pillars with pop culture and understanding how to use six-second bumper ads around videos to grab attention. Presenter: Gathan Borden, VP Marketing, Visit LEX (i)
Three Billboards Outside Reno, NV. How Reno made stars of their influencers by promoting them on billboards. Does this facilitate lower fees?
11:00-11:15 am: Morning Break
11:20-12:00 pm: Content Distribution
The Evolution of Influencer Marketing 2013-2018
Look at how influencer marketing has shifted since its start way back in 2013. Influencers have gone from hobbyists to doing it for living, and many have started their own media companies. They offer marketers pre-set photo shop filters, and some are bringing newly minted self-proclaimed influencers to destinations in groups of 10. Presenter TBD
Maximizing Facebook Live: How Nelson and Kootenay Lake Tourism, a string of destinations around British Columbia Lake country created a UGC contest that culminated in the winning entries being live streamed during a town hall meeting that attracted nearly 20,000 followers and 900 comments. Presenter: Dianna Ducs, Executive Director, Nelson and Kootenay Lake Tourism. (i)
12:00-12:30 pm: The Next Big Thing? Taking Extreme Advantage of Facebook Groups. What can tourism marketers do to take advantage of Facebook’s latest initiative to promote groups as a way for marketers to build communities of the most engaged followers within specific niches in order to amplify distribution. Presenter: TBD
A Day in the Life a State-Level Digital Media Manager. Digital media managers from states with limited budgets have unique challenges given that they have to offer support to statewide DMOs while managing their own time. Here a state manager offers a typical version of his day on an hour-by-hour basis. Presenter: Logan Hildebrand, Digital Media Manager, Kansas Office of Tourism and Travel. (i)
Blind Date Lunch: 12:30-2:15pm: Blind Date Lunch (or lunch on your own)
2:15-3:00 pm: Social Media Marketing Targeting Trends:
What You Can Learn from Cambridge Analytica Without Going to Jail. How to mine Facebook data to precisely target your best prospects in a way that will not get you in trouble with Facebook or the law. Presenter: Martin Stoll, CEO, Sparkloft Media (i)
New Video Series; African-American targeted; Food tourism: Distribution efforts around those were efficient and got $2 million; cost per 30-second view. FB added a survey tool questioning whether it made viewers want to visit Philadelphia.
3:00-4:00 pm: Show and Tell: There’s Riches in Those Niches.
The Great Montgomery County CVB Pizza Tournament. How March Madness basketball made Valley Forge CVB’s “Best Pizza Joint” tournament and scored a three pointer with social media. Presenter: Ed Harris, Valley Forge CVB (i)
Color Me Happy! Tennessee Department of Tourism uses video and social media to promote a new telescope that helps those afflicted with color blindness see the burst of leaves changing during fall foliage season. Brian Wagner, VP Marketing, Tennessee Tourism (i)
Visit Buffalo Earns its Wings: Visit Buffalo develops the world’s first and only Buffalo Wings trail. Drew Brown, Marketing Manager, Visit Buffalo/Niagara. (i)
Animal House! Two destinations display their adroitness in the new field of pet-friendly marketing. How Visit Asheville offers a tour of their destination from a dog’s point of view; Visit Vacaville’s Director of Barketing. Presenters: Kat Kessler, Visit Asheville, (i), Melyssa McLaughlin, Executive Director, Vacaville, Chamber; Dave Kendrick, founder, Dogtrekker. (i)
4:00-4:15 pm: Afternoon Break
4:15-5:00 pm: Content Marketing Measurability: A panel of DMOs and attraction content managers discuss how they report measurability on social media and influencer marketing platforms. Panelists: TBA
5:00-5:30 pm: Websites We Fell in Love With
Meeting Planners to DMOs: Your Websites are Useless! According to a Digital Edge survey, meeting planners who tested nine DMO websites (most of which included a dedicated meeting planner section), found the #1 reason planners wouldn’t use it. None of offered any value. Starting from scratch, they reinvented the Meeting Planner section of VisitParkCity.com and found they were able to increase leads generated by 200%.Presenter: Mya Surrency, CEO, Digital Edge (i); Sarah Myers, Digital Marketing Manager, Visit Park City
Take a Chance on Us: Milwaukee’s New Website Introduces Slot Machine Technology. Introduces website functionality embracing the spirit of the city, featuring a virtual slot machine, “randomizer,” that serves up random suggestions for unique things to do when visiting. Megan Suardini, VP Marketing and Communications, Visit Milwaukee (i)
Track 2: Digital Strategies and Accountability
9:00-10:00 am: How We Divide our Digital Media Plan Budget. Presenters from three different organizations at three budget levels discuss how they divide their digital media plan. Presenters TBA
- Under $1 million
- Under $2 million
- Over $3 million
10:00-11:00 am: Underutilized Media: What You Get When You Spend $80,000 on a Campaign Using: Quantcast, Pinterest, Vox and Atlas Obscura. We ask a panel of tourism media buyers what they can get for $80K on a campaign using unconventional digital media options. Invited presenters: AdGenuity (i), Visit Savannah (i), and Tempest (i)
11:00-11:15 am: Morning Break
11:20-12:00 pm: Show and Tell
Out from the Shadows of Larger DMOs. How suburban DMOs can use digital tactics to emerge from shadows of larger, better known and more robustly financed metropolitan cities. Using content marketing and digital paid strategy to identify the most passionate locals. Presenter: Ryan Callinson, Visit Frisco.(i)
If Facebook’s New “Trip Consideration” Can Make it Here, Can it Truly Make it Anywhere? NYC & Co is first DMO to Road Test Facebook’s new “Trip Consideration” feature designed to target paid posts paid posts to potential visitors who have expressed interest in your destination or attraction. Presenter: Taisa Veras, Director of Social Media, NYC & Co. (i)
12:00-12:30 pm: Show and Tell: The Best Map Technology
12:30-2:15 pm: Blind Date Lunch
2:20-3:00 pm: Can You Game Google’s Algorithm? How Tourism Marketers Can Improve Presence on Google’s Ecosytem to Share the Most Relevant Content with Prospective Visitors. Presenter: TBA
The Most Viable Alternatives to the Google and Facebook Duopoly. The best way to break the duopoly is to develop relevant organic traffic to deep links from an array of different sources; finding other people to tell your story and deliver an experience that they naturally want to share. Dark Posts on Facebook to drive traffic to your site, testing Google pay-per-click campaigns using image-based tiles instead of text. Presenter TBA
Digital Campaigns That Prove Why DMOs Are So Important. How do we validate the work we’re doing? How can we best communicate this to board members, local businesses and stakeholders in a way that makes feel like they are part of DMO?
- The number of stakeholders at Visit Fort Worth’s annual breakfast grew from 200 to 800 over four years because of the way they communicated value to residents and businesses.
- A new dashboard developed by Visit Philadelphia showed how a combination of paid content and geo-fencing at Penn Station encouraged more NYC commuters to visit Philly.
- Lexington, KY activated their community by creating the Lexington Hospitality awards as well as destination development plan launched with board and featuring people in the community. Presenter: Gathan Borden, VP Marketing, Visit LEX
4:00-4:15 pm: Afternoon Break
4:15-5:00 pm: The Great Digital Agency Smackdown. Four digital agencies “nominated” by the eTourism Community pitch for 10 minutes each about why they deserve your consideration. Presenting agencies TBA
5:00-5:30 pm: Show and Tell: A.I. in Action: Visit Stockton, CA has a chatbot serving as a concierge and ambassador. Its forward thinking leadership created an ethos around cutting edge digital marketing, ultimately helping a rebound from a 2012 Forbes distinction as “the Most Miserable City in the U.S.” Presenter: Wes Rhea, CEO, Visit Stockton
Steal This Idea: How Myrtle Beach Created a Niche Marketing Campaign to Help Families with Autistic Children Vacation with Peace of Mind. Presenter: Scott Schult, VP Marketing, Visit Myrtle Beach.(i)
TOPEKA, Kansas – A view from the inside, thanks to Logan Hildebrand, Digital Media Manager, Kansas Office of Tourism & Travel and CrowdRiff.
Sound familiar? “Keeping track of everything that goes on in an entire state with a small team,” and “getting hundreds of Kansas DMOs on the same page.” Logan points out several of the realities – and learnings – of her job in an article found here.