In case you missed the discussion on June 24, takeaways are below and the webinar in full along with other past sessions, is on the YouTube channel.
For 21 years, the feedback from hundreds of attendees has been crystal clear: eTourism Summit connects the ecosystem of destination marketing pros exchanging ideas in an intimate setting like no other conference. So, in 2020, it’s by staying small and staying true to that “North Star” that we’re guided in everything we do.
To support that mission in the best way possible, eTourism Summit 2020 will be a hybrid event with options for both virtual and in-person attendance.
As always, our focus of eTourism Summit is “See Tomorrow” — and there’s never been a more important time to put our heads together and re-imagine the future of tourism.
Date and Location Changes
eTourism Summit will take place at the fabulous Wynn in Las Vegas* on October 19-21, 2020. And for everyone who was excited about being in Seattle, no worries; we will be there in 2021.
*You may have read that Wynn designed the blueprint that’s leading the hotel industry in health and sanitation products and protocols.
Sharing the news here first.
ATLANTA, June 17, 2020 — eTourism Summit, the business-to-business travel industry conference for the digital marketer community, has opened registration for its 21st event at the five-star Wynn Las Vegas on Oct. 19-21, 2020.
At the intersection of digital media and tourism promotion, the eTourism Summit mission is to “See Tomorrow” in an intimate interactive setting featuring highly relevant, dynamic content. This fall, #eTS2020 will showcase all-new “See Tomorrow” programming focused on digital marketing in the post-pandemic environment.
A hybrid event model offers innovative and flexible choices for marketers and suppliers.
For marketers, a virtual participation package is available via “21 Days of eTS.” This registration option includes curated hour-long sessions throughout the month of October as well as pre-selected private vendor appointments. Virtual registration may be extended individually or company-wide.
An exciting concept for virtual attendance is being newly introduced. Using a unique code, the “Community Pass” allows marketers to share unlimited attendance with their qualified members and partners in a destination.
Off-site registrants will participate in intimate roundtables with other DMOs, attractions, and hoteliers, “see” industry friends and make new connections at fun gatherings. Highlights include the eTourism Summit 21st anniversary celebration and the 3rd Annual eTSY Awards ceremony recognizing excellence in digital destination marketing.
In-person attendance in Las Vegas includes all the virtual components plus two days of exclusive general sessions, keynotes, and panel discussions.
Will Seccombe, president of Connect Travel said, “The eTourism Summit has been the premier industry event for digital savvy tourism marketers for the past 21 years. It’s known for presenting ground-breaking thought leadership that keeps everyone one step ahead of the pace of change. Due to the sudden and rapidly evolving events of 2020, we’ve seen the critical role that technology plays. In the two decades since the founding of eTourism Summit, digital marketing and communications in tourism have gone from emerging to highly relevant to absolutely irreplaceable.”
eTourism Summit was acquired in 2018 by Connect Travel, a division of Connect, a Tarsus Group company. “Connect Safe Space 2020,” provides leadership in post-Covid environments, ensuring design and implementation of best practices, cutting edge solutions and common sense protocols to enable in-person business events.
ABOUT CONNECT TRAVEL Connect Travel is the leisure travel division of Connect. Connect Travel creates efficient and effective environments to expedite the sales process by connecting tourism professionals with the products, services, people and ideas that allow them to thrive in a rapidly evolving and highly competitive global marketplace. For more information, visit ConnectTravel.com.
CONNECT/Tarsus Group Connect is a leader in the meetings, travel and tourism industry. Specializing in destination marketing, the company produces a full suite of digital programs, online and mobile solutions, meetings business and travel magazines, trade shows and consumer events, travel guides for newspapers and leisure magazines and destination information distributed through broadcast and custom programs. More information about the company’s brands and services is available at connectmeetings.com. Connect is part of U.K.-based Tarsus Group, a business-to-business exhibition company with more than 150 events worldwide.
Destinations International has named five 2020 inductees to its Hall of Fame and presented its annual Destination Organization Leadership Award to Joe D’Alessandro, president and CEO of San Francisco Travel Association, the DMO founded in 1909.
The Destination Organization Leadership Award was created in 2017 and is among the association’s most prestigious honors, recognizing those outstanding individuals who, through their exceptional work and achievements, have made a significant contribution to the destination marketing industry and a profound difference in the communities they serve.
The five 2020 Hall of Fame inductees are (l to r):
- Bonnie Carlson, CDME, president and CEO of Bloomington (Minn.) Convention & Visitors Bureau
- Solomon and Gloria Herbert, publishers of Black Meetings and Tourism Magazine
- Wendy Perks Fisher, retired president and CEO of Rockford Area Convention & Visitors Bureau
- Karolyn Kirchgesler, the recently retired president and CEO of Team San Jose, who sadly, passed away on May 29 after a battle with cancer.
Georgia Department of Economic Development announced that Mark Jaronski, a 25-year travel and tourism industry leader and veteran Disney marketing executive, will lead Explore Georgia, the state tourism office within the Georgia Department of Economic Development.
Jaronski spent 16 years at The Walt Disney Company in Florida in a variety of marketing roles including manager of Disney Cruise Line PR, brand manager of Walt Disney World theme parks, and director of external communications for Disney Parks Worldwide. He is former chairman of U.S. Travel Association’s communications committee. Since 2016, Jaronski has been serving as CEO of Select Registry Distinguished Inns of North America.
Hawaii Tourism Authority is on the hunt again for a new leader as HTA president and CEO Chris Tatum has given notice that he will retire and move to Colorado on Aug. 31 after 40 years in the hospitality industry.
Tatum took over the top HTA job in December 2018 following a 37-year career with Marriott International.
The announcement comes as Hawaii’s tourism industry has ground to a halt with no clear path to recovery. Hawaii’s inter-island quarantine is ending on June 16 but the mandatory 14-day quarantine for out-of-state arrivals remains in effect into July.
The Star Advertiser indicates that “HTA’s fiscal year 2020 budget was $86 million, but the agency has reduced its fiscal year 2021 budget to $55.2 million. HTA plans to reduce its branding budget from more than $51 million in fiscal year 2020 to about $28 million, a 44.5 % drop.”
In New York State, Melaine Rottkamp has been named president and CEO of Dutchess Tourism, effective July 21. She will succeed Mary Kay Vrba, who has served in the post for nearly 26 years. Rottkamp has worked at Dutchess County Tourism for more than eight years, serving most recently as vice president.
Destinations such as Explore St. Louis and Experience Columbus are working with local venues and establishments to demonstrate a commitment to health and safety by attaining GBAC Star Accreditation, presented by ISSA, the worldwide cleaning industry association. GBAC STAR establishes requirements to assist facilities with work practices, protocols, procedures, and systems to control risks associated with infectious agents, such as SARS-CoV-2, the virus responsible for COVID-19.
Stephanie Davis Smith, VP of Content & Marketing at Connect Travel, talks to Brian Hall, CMO at Explore St. Louis and Sarah Townes, VP Marketing at Experience Columbus about how “CVB Staffs Become Infectious Disease Experts” in this post. Read more about these efforts here.
London World Travel Market has announced plans to go ahead with its scheduled in-person event on Nov. 2-4, 2020*. The ExCel London centre event typically draws 30,000 industry attendees.
*Note: Election Day in the U.S. is Nov. 3, 2020.
The New York Times Travel Show has made a different decision, cancelling its event scheduled to take place on Jan.29-31, 2021 at the Jacob K. Javits Convention Center in New York City. Normally, it attracts more than 35,000 attendees with over 750 exhibitors from more than 175 countries, making it the largest travel trade and consumer show in North America.
SearchWide Global has been retained to conduct an executive search to find the next president & CEO for the newly formed Santa Clara DMO. Santa Clara, California, is in the heart of Silicon Valley about an hour south of San Francisco where it is home to the 49ers Levi’s Stadium and the Santa Clara Convention Center.
Silicon Valley Central Chamber of Commerce has started a search for a new CEO and president with the departure of former top executive Nick Kaspar. The organization is the third-largest business advocacy group in Silicon Valley, according to Business Journal, with $2.32 million in annual revenue in 2017 and 25 paid staff in 2017, the latest fiscal year for which figures were available. Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org.
IATA has produced an interactive map to keep track of coronavirus travel restrictions, country-by-country. Find out the latest detailed information about restrictions that apply to international cross border traffic by clicking on any country using this link.
San Francisco, we have a problem. The weather is sunny and 72º F. under bright blue skies, but it’s on the windy side. And our ears are ringing because “The Golden Gate Bridge Is Now a Giant Orange Wheezing Kazoo,” says KQED, the local NPR station.
A confused and startled Twitterverse noted that this is 2020, after all.
Friends in London and Paris asked about it when the story made international news. The walkable, bikeable 87-year-old suspension bridge is consistently ranked by travelers as a top landmark on TripAdvisor.
Depending who you talk to, the sound is surreal, hypnotizing, trippy, annoying, nothing at all like a fog horn. Everyone agrees that it’s crazy loud; complaints are coming in from residents all across the city.
The reason? Engineers installed new railing slats along the bike path on the bridge to help with seismic refit and wind resistance, but didn’t take into account what happens when westerly winds blow right through.
Aargh. This comment in the San Francisco Chronicle is not amusing. “Officials said there are no planned fixes for the issue.” To take a listen, click here.
We’re all on a journey within a journey and the only road map is data. Join the next “Staying Connected” webinar on Wednesday, June 10 at 1 p.m. (ET) where we’ll get this conversation going about where the numbers are taking us.
Geek out with this panel of experts along with host and moderator Josh Collins of Streetsense.
- Jamie Lane, Sr. Director, Economics & Forecasting, CBRE
- Jay Kinghorn, Chief Digital And Analytics Officer, Co-founder, Entrada Insights
- Allison Schult, Visit North Carolina and Principal & Chief Navigator, Mile Marker 630
- Josh Collins, Director Destination Activations and Marketing, Streetsense
In case you missed it, Key Takeaways from last week’s webinar with Arival on the topic, “Think Differently: It’s Time for DMOs to Work With Local Tours, Activities, Attractions and Experiences.” Thanks to our panelists, including Visit Salt Lake City, Visit Houston, San Diego Zoo, Bandwango, Bindlestiff Tours.
- We’ve gone from big growth heroes to zero with no sales funnel. So, it’s time to think differently; that means building from within, starting with community development. Local tours, activities, attractions and experiences are the foundation for that plan.
- What’s new and interesting is the buzz that makes a place unique. For example, Visit Houston created a website “things-to-do” marketplace; Visit Salt Lake City created a 365 days/year sightseeing pass; Bandwango explains how Visit Indy builds niche audience around a craft ale trail; Las Vegas visitors self-drive to parks where a guide from Bindlestiff Tours meets them; San Diego Tourism promotes the San Diego Zoo’s ‘Kids Free October’ and is building on it (think Miami Spice and Miami Spa months).
- DMOs should rethink their KPIs. Look at the whole consumer journey and look at adding value, including loss leaders like free things-to-do. Create resident ambassadors, invite locals to visit locally, remember the importance of VFR as an incentive to travel.
- There’s untapped opportunity to build more and stronger relationships. Only 49% of the operators in this forum indicate they’re currently working with their destination marketing organizations (DMOs).
- We’re at a crossroads for change. The room tax funding model for DMOs has been disrupted by Covid-19, so metrics will shift. DMOs are more interested than ever in promoting Ma & Pa places, small businesses and local enterprises.
Catch up on any conversations you may have missed on our YouTube channel.