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Powered by Expedia Group Media Solutions and Simpleview, the eTourism Summit Excellence Awards recognize and celebrate the best of 2017-18 campaigns and programs with awards in 13 original categories.
“The eTourism Summit community is comprised of tech-savvy digital marketers who are always looking for innovative ideas that will deliver measurable results for their destinations,” said Monya Mandich, Senior Director Marketing & Public Relations for Expedia Group Media Solutions.
“The eTourism Summit Excellence Awards are a great opportunity to honor the work that destination marketing organizations are doing to advance the relevance of travel and tourism around the world,“ said Cara Frank, Vice President of Marketing at Simpleview. “The excellent work that DMOs produce for their communities deserves to be rewarded.”
The call for entries opened in June 2018 and concluded three months later, garnering strong interest from city, state, county, and regional DMOs and attractions throughout the US. Appreciation goes to a panel of expert judges from across the nation: Cara Frank, VP of Marketing, Simpleview; Jason Hackett, President and Founder, Brier Katama LLC; Andrew Hertz, Dade Media Inc.; Monya Mandich, Global Senior Director of Marketing and Public Relations, Expedia Group Media Solutions; and Matt Stiker, Chief Marketing and Nourishing Officer, Garrand Moehlenkamp, who considered three key criteria: strategy and objective; creativity; and impact/ measurability.
“The quality of digital marketing in the travel and tourism industry is impressive. Every category was highly competitive,” said J. William Seccombe, president of Connect Marketing, owner/operator of eTourism Summit. “We applaud all those who submitted examples of their great work for national recognition and congratulate the winners.”
Winners of the eTourism Summit inaugural 2018 eTSY Awards for Excellence presented by Derek Price, Director of Sales – North America, Expedia Group Media Solutions; Rennie Leon, Director of Marketing, Simpleview; and Jake Steinman, Founder of eTourism Summit are:
Best Augmented, Virtual or Mixed Reality Video – Atlanta Convention & Visitors Bureau
Best Short-Form Video – Lee County (FL) Visitor & Convention Bureau
Best Long-Form Video – Tennessee Department of Tourist Development
Best Use of Live Video – Travel Wisconsin
Best Viral Campaign – Tennessee Department of Tourist Development
Best Executed Strategy – Visit Philadelphia
Best Influencer Marketing Campaign – Tennessee Department of Tourist Development
Best Content Marketing Program – Tennessee Department of Tourist Development
Best Niche Marketing Campaign – Tennessee Department of Tourist Development
Best Email Marketing Campaign – LEGOLAND California Resort
Best Organic Social Media Post – Lee County (FL) Visitor & Convention Bureau
Best Destination Website – South Carolina Department of Parks, Recreation & Tourism
Best Digital Co-op Program – Tennessee Department of Tourist Development
By Expedia Media Solutions
For online travel shoppers, the purchase journey is complex. From the inspiration, research and consideration phases to the booking phase, the process may include many twists and turns while navigating online travel information, OTA, hotel and airline sites, and more. With an understanding of the intricate online booking journey, brands can connect with travelers and influence their purchases.
A new study on the Traveler’s Path to Purchase from Expedia Media Solutions and comScore reveals trends in how online travel shoppers in the U.S., U.K. and Canada choose destinations and make travel purchases.
The study found that Americans spent 8.7 billion minutes on digital travel content during a 15-month period, more than a 40 percent increase year over year. In the 45 days leading up to an online travel purchase, American shoppers visit travel sites an average of 140 times, and as they get nearer to making a purchase decision, they seek out even more content and spend a significant amount of time conducting online research and planning.
During this booking journey, American travelers are also paying attention to advertising: 32 percent said advertising or word of mouth prompts their research and exploration of a trip. The impact of advertising is further illustrated in that nearly half of travel bookers recall seeing a travel ad while shopping for or booking travel. This presents a great opportunity for travel marketers to reach and influence the online booker throughout their travel path to purchase.
Here are three ways to influence online travel bookers:
1. Create efficiencies for travel bookers by creating compelling content that can be accessed across devices. The digital industry in the U.S. is expansive: there are 258 million people who engage with digital content across screens (desktop, mobile or tablet), and of those, three out of five people specifically spend time on travel content. American digital travel shoppers are increasingly interacting with travel content on mobile devices, which reaches more consumers than desktop. As multi-platform usage increases, consumers expect a cohesive, integrated content experience, regardless of which screen they are using.
2. Leverage online channels and partnerships that provide efficient and scalable reach through all phases of the consumer booking journey. The top resources that U.S. travel shoppers initially use to choose a destination include OTAs, airline sites and family and friends. They consistently use OTA, airline and hotel sites throughout the duration of the purchase path, relying less on other resources as they get closer to booking. It’s crucial for travel marketers to take note of when and how shoppers use different resources in order to create an effective and fully integrated approach.
3. Consider shopper habits and influential touch points throughout the entire booking journey to determine marketing objectives and create an integrated strategy. The best opportunity for travel advertisers to influence and maintain share of voice is at the initial point of consumer inspiration. This phase of the online booking journey is when ad penetration is lowest and recall is highest. For travelers who are considering multiple destinations, advertising can make an impact — it influences 27 percent of those who are undecided. Targeting effectively reaches travel consumers, as bookers are four times more likely to see travel advertising than non-bookers. By taking into account the entire path to purchase, marketers can optimize their reach and effectiveness to influence consumer purchase decisions.
-> Attendees at eTourism LABS on March 14-15, 2017 will hear directly from Derek Price, Director North America, Expedia Media Solutions.
Jason Hackett, former chief digital officer for New York Cruise Lines, has struck out on his own as CEO and founder at Brier Katama LLC, a C-level strategic consultancy for DMOs, hotels, operators and attractions. “Tourism creates joy, jobs and understanding,” says Jason. A past speaker at eTourism Summit who has shed light on using Facebook dark posts, Jason’s LinkedIn profile explains, “Our work at Brier Katama is to help tourism businesses eliminate obstacles and improve the traveler’s experience. We are strategists, technologists, designers and marketers and we are on a mission to make every tourist a local and every local a tourist.”
Following two years as vice president of global communications at Visit Orlando, the former Disney executive, Mark Jaronski, becomes CEO of Select Registry, a portfolio of more than 320 quality-assured, independent bed and breakfasts, inns and boutique hotels throughout North America.
Promoted to Tourism Lead for Google Canada, Kim Rellinger, an audience favorite among 2015 eTourism Summit speakers, is expanding her role from Account Executive in the travel vertical. Kim addressed influencer marketing and trends in video marketing in two sessions and says she really enjoyed the networking at eTS in October. Kim continues to be based in Toronto.
Sojern has made two new appointments, says Sylvia Weiler, General Manager, Tourism Vertical. Welcome to Mat Harris, a startup veteran with a background in mobile and video advertising as well as digital agency work that includes Tapjoy. The former lead for product management at InMobi, Mat becomes head of product at Sojern in San Francisco. At Sojern in New York City, Derek Price joins the team as East Coast advertising sales director. Derek’s depth and breadth in travel industry partnerships includes 20-plus years’ experience encompassing AAA, Travelocity and Orbitz.