Editor’s Note: This is the first in a series of regular summaries covering a selection of sessions at this year’s eTourism Summit.
By Laurie Jo Miller Farr
A DECLARATION OF INTERDEPENDENCE: What’s next? The kid is highly sociable, growing up fast and getting into new behaviors on what seems like a weekly basis. Furthermore, this kid has learned how to put his hand out for money.
Just when we thought we had our heads around organic search, the kid wants a lock on his bedroom door. We should probably expect this behavior from a 15-year-old, but could anything be more annoying than Google’s Hummingbird changes?
IPOs and monetization mean that social media and search marketing have had to grow up. Nothing on the marketing landscape has changed more in the past five years than the interdependence of social media marketing, mobile strategy, search and content. Because, let’s face it:organic search is now dependent on social, social is tied to mobile, and having a mobile presence is now a critical factor in appearing high in search rankings. The new Circle of Life?
There is, however, a top-rated consensus on what’s in store for 2014: mobile, mobile, and mobile. Secondly, content is not only still king, but has enjoyed an indisputable promotion to emperor. By being more compelling than ever, the best content is now known as “storytelling.”
To address these ever-changing behaviors, Facebook head of travel Lee McCabe used the phrase, “If it works, it’s obsolete.” Put another way, we must all learn to live in beta.
Since change never comes easy, many are wondering whether there is a silver lining. Here are five:
1) The mobile website vs app and HTML5 vs. responsive design debate is over. Responsive design, having come down in cost, is the clear winner for those wishing to develop one site for all screens.
2) Tourism companies can strengthen partnerships with stakeholders as they bring social media marketing in-house to better coordinate and grasp content, product and campaigns.
3) Get to know the younger kids* on the block now, as they will also grow up quickly and either move away or no longer be free to make friends with you.
4) Everything old is new again. Email is back, but it’s hanging out with the cool kids at Facebook, LinkedIn, Google+ where it’s mimicking their behavior.
5) You can realize serious ROI by utilizing buckets found lying around the sandbox beside friends like Adara and Sojern who have shovels to help get you started.
We like to keep in mind that: “Social media marketing is, after all, “just marketing.”
* Those are the ones with trendy names such as Yammer, Tumblr, Flickr, Seen, Vine, Instagram, Pinterest, Field Trip.