Author Archives: NAJ

About NAJ

We produce www.touroperatorland.com website as well as boutique networking trade shows and conferences: Active America China, eTourism Summit and three annual NAJ Receptive Tour Operator Summits for the leisure and MICE markets: East, West and Orlando.

Bright Shiny Object Profile: Pictyear

Jerome Tricault, Pictyear

Jerome Tricault, Pictyear

Each year eTourism Summit includes a  session where new start-ups present their product to a group of three potential users in a “Shark Tank” format.   This year we selected several companies that our attendees had suggested and others that are new but may be part of the Visitor Center of the Future.

Pictyear:  Meet Jerome Tricault, founder and CEO of Pictyear. We sat down for a chat with the serial entrepreneur and father of four in his office, which happens to be located 200 yards from eTourism Summit World Headquarters.  His current creation is a collaborative photo app was chosen for eTS based on its potential to enhance shareability.  Pictyear is the first app that allows smartphone users to create collaborative photo books with friends and family…on the go! And, it’s free.

Screen shot 2015-10-14 at 9.06.39 AM

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Q: What problem does this solve for users?

JT: It’s an app that allows friends and family to build a commemorative photo book either as a free e-book that can be shared with friends and family on Facebook and Twitter  or as photo book that can be produced on the go.

Q: How does it work?

JT: Here’s a 60-second intro that tells you everything you need to know.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?t=47&v=tr_F2Sr_ItI

Q: How much does it cost?

A: The app is free, to create a shareable e-book is free, and a printed book shipped directly to your home is $29.95.

Q: How can eTourism Summit attendees use it?

JT: I can think of five ways:

  1. Have your Visitor Center show people how they can create their own photo album.
  2. Create a scavenger hunt promoting lesser known attractions.
  3. Offer advertising for partners on the back cover of each book.
  4. Earn money as we share in revenue of every book that gets printed.
  5. Visitors attending special events together can create their own photo album.

Q: How do you feel about being selected as one of six start-ups to present at eTourism Summit?

JT: I’m a little nervous about my French accent, but we’re excited to be chosen. When you try the out the app at eTourism Summit, we’re going to award the best ePhoto Album generated from the Summit with $100.

 

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Sneak Peak: A Rough Draft for 2015 eTourism Summit Agenda

eTourism Summit 2015

(Provisional Program)

Subject to change (probably several). Note: “i”=invited but not yet confirmed

Thursday, October 22, 2015

Three Tactical Workshop Tracks

Track 1: Content Marketing

8:45-9:30 am: The Budgeters Guide to Content Marketing Strategy

Ask three people to describe their content marketing strategy, you’ll receive three different answers based on what they can afford. Tourism marketers with three different leisure annual marketing budgets (excluding convention and meeting sales) describe their strategies.

  • Under $1M: Josh Collins, Digital Communications Manager, Visit Williamson County CVB
  • $1-3M: Mark Crabb, Chief Sales Officer, Sonoma CVB (i)
  • $4M+:   Justin Bresler, VP Marketing, Visit Denver (i)

9:30-10:30am: Social Media Driving Your Content Marketing. Takeaways that everyone needs to know about:

  • Facebook/Instagram: MMGY(i)
  • Twitter/Periscope, TBA
  • Pinterest: Enid Hwang, Community Manager, Pinterest (i)
  • SnapChat and Vine, TBA

Content Marketing Makeover:  eTourism Summit assigns staff to completely revise a destination’s content marketing and reports back on the results. Presenters TBA

10:30-11:00am: Break

11:00-12:00pm: Video Content That Rocks

  • Facebook vs Youtube Video: What are the key differences, which is most effective and what are the costs?  Presenters: Chris Adams, VP Research; Gray Lawry, Director of Media & Analytics, Miles   
  • What’s ahead in video marketing: Live Video Streaming, Meerkat vs Periscope   and what it means for travel marketers. Videos rule right now. Presenters: Brian Carr, Head of Travel, Twitter (i)
  • What Constitutes Shareable Video: Justin Watkins, CEO/Founder, Native KC (i)

12:00-12:30pm: How Blogging Has Evolved in the World of Content Marketing

  • The state of the blogging industry: Roger Wu, Co-Founder, Cooperatize.com
  • Panel of travel blogging influencers discuss the latest in the industry

12:30-1:30pm: Lunch on own

1:30-2:30pm: Influencer Marketing Part 2:

  • Finding Influencers Who Can Be Bought: Congress has proved that you can buy influence, that’s nothing new.  But now it’s wide open; influencers and brands can be purchased in a biddable auction format.  TBA
  • How to Create Your Own Influencer workshop. San Francisco Travel met with 40 influencers to discover new insights for their content marketing programs. Dan Rosenbaum, Sr. Manager, Content and Social Media Marketing, San Francisco Travel (i)
  • Creating a Value-Driven Model for Influencers: How much are they worth? TBA
  • The Great Instagram Take-Over: Hand over your account to cross audiences and followers, rewarding your most loyal fans. Teresa O’Neill, VP Tourism, Travel Oregon (i)

2:30-3:30pm: How Tourism Brands Are Measuring ROI on Content Marketing

  • Katie Paterson, Director of Marketing, Traakr
  • Katie Cook, Director of Digital Marketing, Austin CVB
  • Katie Harris, VP Marketing, Amelia Island CVB (i)

3:30-4:00 pm: Break

4:00-5:30pm:  Success Stories Come To Life

  • El Paso Uses In-App Facetime as Virtual Visitor Center: Bryan Crowe, General Manager, El Paso CVB
  • Albuquerque CVB takes to Social Media to Bust Myths: Tania Armenta, COO and VP Marketing, Albuquerque CVB (i)
  • Louisville’s LGTB Wedding Promotion: Creating the world’s largest wedding reception to coincide with Louisville Pride Week.

Track 2: Paid Stuff

8:45-9:30 am: Programmatic Buying For Dummies: Programmatic Buying101! Making Programmatic Buying Understandable and Affordable Understand what it is and how it works. Programmatic isn’t just a hot trend; it’s an effective, smart way to reach targeted and re-targeted audiences at optimized CPM costs in real-time. 

  • The Future of TV Advertising: Programmatic TV buying, connected TV and new ways it plays into the overall video landscape of the future.  TBA
  • The Future of Digital Radio Advertising: Leon Van Gelder, Regional VP, Pandora (i)

9:30-10:30am: The Newest Paid Media Tools and Features on the Leading Platforms

  • Facebook
  • Google
  • Twitter
  • Pinterest

10:30-11:00 am: Break

11:00-12:00noon: Which Vendors Should You Use When Building Your Tourism Marketing Sales Funnel. In its simplest form, tourism advertising means understanding which vendors fit into which stages of the sales funnel. Three independent media professionals provide recommendations on the leading vendors and publishers to use through the funnel.

Upper Funnel: Inspiration Stage: Gray Lawry, Director of Media & Analytics, Miles;  Programmatic: Rocketfuel; TripAdvisor; Digital Video Pre-roll, Radio, Awareness,  Native Advertising

Mid-Funnel: Research & Comparison Stage: Tania Leichliter, President,  AdGenuity, TripAdvisor, Adara, Rocketfuel, OTAs

Lower Funnel: Activation & Booking Stage: Plus email marketing to the right database. Tour operators/wholesalers; OTAs, Travelzoo, FacebookChris Herring, Director of Digital Marketing, BarkelyREI (i)

12:00-12:30pm: What’s Ahead in Content Discovery Engines: Taboola and Outbrain. How successful are they at driving incremental traffic to your website and what should you pay? Presenter TBA

12:30-1:30pm: Lunch on own

1:30-2:30pm: How to Use Analytics: Understanding Newest Features of Google Analytics and Facebook Insights

2:30-3:30pm: Using Facebook as an Advertising Tool: Not for Beginners. Mid-level Facebook users learn about more advanced features: Look-Alike clones, Custom Audiences, Power Editor and Atlas to generate more conversions and revenue, and measure via new paid features on Facebook and Instagram.

Martin Stoll, CEO, Sparkloft Media

Debate: Humans vs Robots 

  • Humans: We’re Not Dead Yet: Humans provide ideas, interpretation, creative impetus and the intuition that drive all those clicks. As Albert Einstein said, “Not everything that counts can be measured and not everything that can be measured counts.” Presenter: Damian Bazedona, CEO, Situation Interactive (i)
  • Robots: Data Doesn’t Lie: Marketing science has great measurable technology behind it. Presenter: Cree Lawson, Founder, Arrivalist 

3:30-4:00pm: Break

4:00-5:00pm: Native Advertising Smackdown:

What happens when you invite the leading native advertising providers to explain how their technology delivers in real-deal, straight-up, no jargon, no buzzwords, plain English? You’ll find out when we pit four competitors against each other with some tough questions and topics. Jay Freedman, C.R.O. Nativo;  Ryan Bifulco, Founder/CEO, Travel Spike; Madden Media TBA

The Cross-Device Marketer: Understanding how to deliver the same message on mobile, tablet and desktop.  TBA

5:00-5:30pm: Success Stories Come To Life: Real life examples of successful campaigns and the people behind them. TBA

Track 3: Attractions + Experiences + Tours

8:45-9:30am: Search Marketing 101: The basics of a good search marketing program that works for desktop and mobile including both SEO and SEM.

9:30-10:30am: Content Marketing for Attractions: Hate Us on Yelp and TripAdvisor: Latest strategies to manage your online reputation TBA and Three Attractions Discuss their Content Marketing Strategy TBA

10:30-11:00am Break

11:00-12:00noon: To Dream the Impossible Dream…Can We Measure Incremental Sales for Tours and Attractions? “Did my marketing efforts create new sales or would the customer have purchased anyway?” is the Holy Grail of attraction marketing and sales. Is attribution modeling the answer?  Presenter: TBA

12:00-12:30 pm: Are Apps So Fourscore and Seven Years Ago? A Great Debate.  Presenters TBA

12:30-1:30pm Lunch on Own

1:30-2:30pm: In a Pinch Smackdown: What Drives New Sales When You’re Behind Plan: We’ve all been there, sales are lagging behind budget and we need to boost them fast or we’re going to have to answer to the boss. We “give” four leading vendors $25K each and ask them how they would use it most efficiently. 

Invited vendors include: Seth Forman, Head of Destinations, Travelzoo; Michael Flood, SVP Business Development, Dunhill Travel Deals; Sarah Pastor, Manager, Living Social; Global Accounts; Groupon, TBA

2:30-3:30pm: Kitchen Sink: Part 1: Presentations on topics that everyone will want to know (but we weren’t sure where they go)

  • Geo-fencing: Using iBeacon technology to rope off a digital area within which to market offers
  • Email marketing in the 21st Century: Still the primary workhorse of every marketing campaign, an expert from Constant Contact will discuss ways to update preferences and integrate e-mail marketing into your content marketing plan.  Presenter TBA

3:30-4:00pm: Break

4:00-5:00pm: The Kitchen Sink: Part 2: More topics that we can’t find anywhere else to place

  • Meeting Planner Marketing:  Don’t Call Us, We’ll Call You! Meeting planners don’t want to hear from you unless they need you. But, through training and relationship-building your staff can work this space. Thought leaders use a combination of paid and free tools to win their hearts.  Jennie Cini, Head of Travel, LinkedIn (i); Mya Surrency, Principal & Chief Marketing Officer,Digital Edge Marketing 

5:00-5:30pm: Success Stories Come To Life: Three Effective Digital Campaigns-Attractions: Presenters TBA

Friday, October 23, 2015

General Session

9:00-9:20am: State of the Digital Millennial Traveler: John Mangano, Head of Travel, Comscore

9:20-9:35 am: Trends in Video Marketing For Travel: YouTube Research Reveals: Tourism Marketers Should Focus on the “Three H’s: Hero, Hub, and How To: Betsy Vankula, Head of Travel Industry, Google (i)

9:35-9:50 am: The Latest Trends in Mobile for Tourism Marketers: Christine Warner, Head of Travel, Facebook (i)

9:50-10:05am: Twitter and Periscope: How Travel Marketers are using Live Streaming to Increase Visibility and Engagement: Brian Carr, Head of Travel, Twitter (i)

10:05-10:20am: Can This Algorithm Write A Better Blog than You? Alice Robbins, Head of PR, Quill –an advanced natural language generation software that creates data-driven communications at scale.

10:20-10:35am: How to Be a Content Marketing Hero: GoPro is the leader in developing content marketing that resonates for both excitement and effectiveness: Zander Lurie, Sr. VP-Media, GoPro (i)

10:35-11:05am: Strange Bedfellows: Airbnb Executive Takes the Stage with a Hotel GM: Chip Conley, Head of Global Hospitality and Strategy at Airbnb, has agreed to share the stage with a hotel general manager to discuss ways they can co-exist. Conley was the founder of JDV Hotels, now in charge of training Airbnb hosts how to act more like a hospitality company.  Presenters: Chip Conley, Head of Global Strategy, Airbnb in conversation with James Lin, General Manager, Omni Hotel, San Francisco (i)

11:05am-11:25am: Break

11:25am-11:45am: Steal These Ideas: TBA

11:45-12:00pm: Who Has the Best Mobile Website?  We’ve asked the User Experience gurus at Destination Analysts to conduct usability tests with consumers on the mobile websites of 24 attendees. “The envelope, please…”Erin Francis Cummings, President & CEO, Destination Analysts

12:00-12:30pm: Are Travel Brands Facing the End of Monogamy? Ten years ago tourism brands had one main agency of record. Then, they outsourced media buying to a specialist agency and later, digital marketing to yet another agency. Now they are farming out individual campaigns and projects to a variety of external vendors. How do they juggle so many vendors?

12:30-1:20pm: Bright Shiny New Objects: Promising New Products, Tools and Apps

  • Pictyear: Build a Collaborative Photo Album with up to 20 friends
  • Bandwango: Enables DMOs to create and manage digital visitor passes, deals
  • YouVisit: Virtual reality as an App
  • Travelmyth: We are pleased to introduce the founders, a dynamic Athens-based duo recently featured in the Sunday New York Times
  • VipeLine: Enables users to record videos from your website

1:20-2:50pm: Luncheon Sponsored by Expedia

3:00-5:00pm: eTourism Summit Speed Dating Sessions

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SNEAK PEEK: Rough Draft of eTourism Smiit

 

 

 

 

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10 Things We’re Working On For eTourism Summit 2015

Our 2015 Registration is open now with a super early bird offer.

Here’s a sneak preview:

1. Optional pre-conference Deep Dive Workshops with a choice of two of these options:

          a. Advanced Facebook  b.Video Performance  c. Digital Media Buying

2. VIP Tour for CMOs and CEOs

          A day of in-office briefings by Google, Twitter, Uber and Airbnb.

3. New Tracks on Day One:

          Track 1: Content Marketing

          Track 2: Mobile Marketing

          Track 3: Measurement & Fun

4. New mobile design platform

Industry experts are saying this is the 5th generation of web design: Cards.

5. It’s all about the GIF

Soundless loop videos were one of the hottest topics at SXSW  in Austin. Meet Giphy and Imgur, two new websites every DMO should know about.

6. Facebook’s Atlas

Being pitched as the hottest new Cross Device Measurement System. What could it mean for you?

7. Digital Watch Field Test

eTS is field testing both the Android and Apple watches and will report on the results.

8. The Cross Device Marketer

Be the one who knows how to send the right message to the right person on the right device at the right time.

9.  Who’s using 3D to market travel? 

Tourism British Columbia is using Occulus Rift to market their province.

10. Groupon’s founder is now developing “stories that take you places” with GPS walking tour technology.

Conclusion: The one place to be to See Tomorrow: www.etourismsummit.com

 

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Instagram Moves to Position of Number Two Social Network in USA

searchInstagram Moves to Position of Number Two Social Network in USA:​
According to the results of a just released study ​eMarketer.com​, the number of U.S. ​Instagram​ users increased nearly 60 percent in 2014, bringing the social network’s U.S monthly user base to 64.2 million people, according to new 
figures from ​eMarketer​. In 2018, Instagram’s U.S. user base will top 100 million—reaching 106.2 
million that year—when growth finally begins to taper off and dips into single digits for the first time. 
 
U.S. Instagram Users and Penetration 
2013-2019 
(Users by millions, % Change and % of Population) 
Year 
No. of Users (millions) 
Year-on-Year Change 
% of population 
2013 
40.2 
+93.6% 
12.7% 
2014 
64.2 
+59.9% 
20.1% 
2015 
77.4 
+20.9% 
24.2% 
2016 
89.4 
+15.1% 
27.6% 
2017 
98.9 
+10.6% 
30.3% 
2018 
106.2 
+7.4% 
32.3% 
2019 
111.6 
+5.0% 
33.6% 
Note: Internet users who access their Instagram account via any device at least once per month 
Source: eMarketer, February 2015 
 
Twitter’s U.S. user base grew 12.1 percent in 2014 to reach 48.4 million users, eMarketer estimates. 
The gap in the number of users between Twitter and Instagram will continue to widen over its 
forecast period, with Twitter’s user growth slowing to single digits starting in 2015.  
 
U.S. Social Network Users and Penetration by Site 
2013-2019 
(Users by millions, % change and % of population) 
Network 
2013 
2014 
2015 
2016 
2017 
2018 
2019 
FACEBOOK 
147.5 
152.5 
157.1 
161.4 
165.7 
169.2 
172.0 
% change 
+4.2% 
+3.4% 
+3.0% 
+2.8% 
+2.6% 
+2.1% 
+1.7% 
% 
population 
46.4% 
47.8% 
48.9% 
49.8% 
50.7% 
51.4% 
51.8% 
INSTAGRAM 
40.2 
64.2 
77.6 
89.4 
98.9 
106.2 
111.4 
% change 
+93.6% 
+59.9% 
+20.9% 
+15.1% 
10.6% 
+7.4% 
+5.0% 
% 
population 
19.7% 
20.1% 
24.2% 
27.6% 
30.3% 
32.3% 
33.6% 
TWITTER 
43.2 
48.4 
53.1 
57.6 
62.0 
66.1 
69.1 
% change 
+19.4% 
+12.1% 
9.6% 
+8.6% 
+7.6% 
+6.6% 
+4.6% 
% 
population 
18.6% 
15.2% 
16.5% 
17.8% 
19.0% 
20.1% 
20.8% 
PINTEREST 
34.9 
42.3 
47.1 
50.7 
53.9 
56.8 
59.3 
% change 
34.5% 
+21.2% 
111.4% 
+7.7% 
+6.3% 
+5.4% 
+4.2% 
% 
population 
+11.0% 
13.3% 
14.6% 
15.7% 
16.5% 
17.3% 
17.9% 
TUMBLR 
13.7 
17.7 
20.6 
22.2 
23.8 
25.4 
26.6 
% change 
+46.2% 
+29.2% 
12.9% 
+11.4% 
+7.2% 
+6.5% 
+4.8% 
% 
population 
4.3% 
5.6% 
6.2% 
+6.9% 
7.3% 
7.7% 
8.0% 
TOTAL 
165.7 
173.6 
180.3 
184.0 
191.2 
195.9 
200.1 
Note: Internet users who access their Facebok, Twitter, Pinterest, Instagram and/or Tumbler accounts 
via any device at least once per month; social networking audiences are not mutually exclusive; there 
is overlap between groups. 
Source: eMarketer.com, February 2015 
 
Teens and millennials dominate Instagram’s user base, and through 2019, a majority of the network’s 
users will be between the ages of 12 and 34. In 2015, 20.3 million U.S. Instagram users, or 26.2 
percent of the total, will fall within the 25-to-34 age group, and that group will maintain the largest 
portion of the Instagram audience throughout our forecast. The highest penetration, however, will 
remain in the 12-to-17 age group—61.9 percent of all US teens will use Instagram regularly this year, 
and by 2019, more than three-quarters will be Instagrammers.  
 
Going forward, Instagram will also compete with other emerging social networks for attention among 
these younger demographics, and by extension, for brands’ ad dollars in reaching those demographics. 
However, over time, we believe Instagram’s straightforward and simple content feed has wider 
appeal across all demographics—no matter what age or level of digital savvy. 
 
“Instagram has a lot of momentum in the US, growing faster than Twitter, Pinterest, Tumblr and 
Facebook,” said ​Debra Aho Williamson​, principal analyst at eMarketer. “The simplicity of the app is 
what is most appealing; Instagram has stayed true to its core mission—delivering beautiful imagery 
and videos—while other services, such as Snapchat, have loaded on lots of new features.”  
 
U.S. Instagram User Metrics by Age 
2013-2019 
(Users by millions, % penetration and % share) 
Age Group 
2013 
2014 
2015 
2016 
2017 
2018 
2019 
0-11 
0.3 
0.6 
0.8 
0.9 
1.1 
1.2 
1.3 
% 
population 
0.7% 
1.2% 
1.5% 
1.9% 
2.2 
2.4% 
2.6% 
% share 
0.8% 
0.9% 
1.0% 
1.05 
1.1 
1.1% 
1.1% 
12-17 
8.3 
13.6 
15.5 
16.8 
17.9 
18.4 
18.9 
% 
population 
33.2% 
54.3% 
61.9% 
67.4% 
71.5 
73.9% 
75.4% 
% share 
20.6% 
21.1% 
19.9% 
18.9% 
18.1 
17.4% 
16.9% 
18-24 
9.0 
13.6 
15.4 
17.5 
19.0 
20.2 
21.2 
% 
population 
28.8% 
43.2% 
50.0% 
56.5% 
61.8 
65.9% 
69.3% 
% share 
22.5% 
21.2% 
20.1% 
19.6% 
19.2 
19.0% 
26.5% 
25-34 
11.4  
16.8 
20.3 
23.7 
26.4 
28.2 
29.6 
% 
population 
26.6% 
38.6% 
56.0% 
52.8% 
58.0 
61.2% 
63.6% 
% share 
28.4% 
26.1% 
26.2% 
26.5% 
26.7 
26.5% 
26.5% 
35-44 
4.8 
8.7 
10.9 
12.4 
13.7 
14.9 
15.6 
% 
population 
11.8% 
21.6% 
26.9% 
30.6% 
33.5 
36.0% 
37.1% 
% share 
11.9% 
13.6% 
14.0% 
13.9% 
13.9 
14.1% 
14.0% 
45-54 
3.5 
5.7 
7.4 
9.0 
10.3 
11.2 
12.0 
% 
population 
8.0% 
13.2% 
17.6% 
21.1% 
24.3 
26.8% 
29.0% 
% share 
8.75 
8.9% 
9.8% 
10.1% 
10.4 
10.6% 
10.7% 
55-64 
2.3 
4.0 
5.4 
6.9 
8.0 
9.2 
9.9 
% 
population 
5.7% 
10.0% 
13.2% 
16.5% 
19.1 
21.6% 
23.1% 
% share 
5.6% 
6.3% 
6.9% 
7.7% 
8.1 
8.7% 
8.9% 
65-plus 
0.6 
1.2 
1.6 
2.1 
2.5 
2.9 
3.1 
% 
population 
1.4% 
2.5% 
3.4% 
4.3% 
5.0% 
5.4% 
5.7% 
% share 
1.9% 
1.8% 
2.1% 
2.4% 
2.6% 
2.7% 
2.8% 
Total 
40.2 
64.2 
77.6 
89.4 
98.9 
106.2 
111.6 
% 
population 
12.7% 
20.1% 
24.2% 
27.6% 
30.3% 
32.3% 
33.6% 
Note: Internet users who access their Instagram account via any device at least once per month 
Source: eMarketer, February 2015 
 
 
 

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Why We Created DigMe

Midtown Manhattan and Central Park, New York City

#DigMe15: June 10-11, 2015,  Affinia Manhattan Hotel, NYC


 

Over the 15 years we’ve been producing eTourism Summit, we’ve observed evolutionary shifts in online marketing for the travel industry.  Critically, budget dedicated to digital marketing among attendees has crept up from zero to an average of around 40 percent. Meantime, organic engagement for SEO and social is plummeting down through the single digits.

Modern Maturity

Google, Facebook and other platforms have business models that built a critical mass base of users before lowering the boom by requiring us to pay to reach the same audience we previously reached for free. As each platform matures, an entire subset of new services offering sophisticated analytics, data tools as well as a slew of digital media providing measurement in granular detail try to enter the travel B2B marketplace.

It’s Complicated

What began as simple pay-to-play ad forms such as PPC search, banner ads and boosted posts, now includes video marketing, intent marketing, contextual marketing, data-driven marketing, aggregators and multiple forms of native advertising. They’re all sold by a bewildering number of “networks” claiming to have the best audience methodology for targeting travelers in various stages of the sales funnel. 

Many new platforms use an auction format enabling marketers to bid against one another to target various audiences. This looks like a mix of public exchanges, mobile advertising, private exchanges, attribution technology and trading desks, essentially algorithm-controlled robots. Together, all this has given rise to what is now called “Marketing Science” — which is programmatic buying, retargeting and ever more granular measurement that adjusts in real time. 

Traditional Agencies Losing Business to Specialists

Four industries with the highest online sales are travel, finance, automotive and retail. However, marketing travel stands alone, since it’s the purchase of an experience, not a product.

As performance-based marketing has grown, “traditional” agencies have lost their importance, especially in digital marketing, as they focus on the branding, campaign creation and buying media from existing sources with whom they already have relationships.  An ad agency media buyer, which is often an entry level position, can be tasked as gatekeeper of the media budget, but has very little knowledge of what works within the travel vertical and why. Their media buys often result in increased website traffic but the bounce rates can be 2-3X normal. 

In the last several months, scores of new companies have been knocking on the doors of travel marketers and their agencies, who for the most part, have neither the time nor the contextual understanding to evaluate them and their promises effectively.

Connecting the Dots

Our vision for DigMe is: A one-stop venue where travel marketers bring their agencies to get updates on the most important pay-to-play providers, as well as to evaluate new innovative technology and tools that will help them to “Spend Smarter.”

At the Heart of the Matter

While eTourism Summit draws on San Francisco’s energy as the epicenter of innovation, its DigMe spinoff puts roots down in New York City, at the hub of the world’s media ecosystem. There’s nothing else remotely like DigMe; it’s designed specifically for digital travel buying professionals. 

DigMe Format:

Day 1:

A full day of 15-20 minute presentations to provide updates from a well-curated group of digital marketing thought leaders and executives.

Day 2:

A deeper dive through concurrent sessions:

   Room A: Speed Dating for Information:  Attendees take 10-minute one-on-one appointments with digital media companies and qualified experts. 

   Room B: Rotating Round Tables: These are built around top specific pain point topics identified by delegates. 

Who Should Be There?

+ Independent hotel companies and their agencies
+ Attractions and their agencies
+ In-destination service companies and their agencies
+ Local sightseeing companies and their agencies
+ Dining and theater booking companies and their agencies
+ Cruise lines and their agencies
+ Destination marketing organizations and their agencies

 

Photo credit: Andrew Mace, flickr CC 2.0 license

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Latest Update: 16th Annual eTourism Summit 2015

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We’re delighted to announce that eTourism Summit 2015 will be held on October 21-23, 2015 at San Francisco’s Wyndham Parc 55 Hotel, one minute from Market Street, two minutes from the cable car turnaround and three minutes from Union Square. Our negotiated delegate rate is $249, a good deal off the $344 daily rate showing for those dates. Registration is open with a super early bird offer.

We’re sharing more news from eTS today. Based on our latest Advisory Council meeting and your feedback from eTS14, we’re working on the following key topics and goals built around your “pain points.”

Increase Digital Marketing Budgets:

Help increase your digital budgets by launching an outreach to those higher up the decision chain: CEOs, CMOs, and Marketing Directors and their agencies. The focus is on providing them with better understanding of digital marketing and better resources to evaluate third party vendors. We’ll also include international boards from Asia Pacific Region who have U.S. West Coast offices.

How?

We are in the process of creating a special pre-conference VIP day by invitation on Monday, October 21 for CMOs, CEOs and tourism boards to include:

  • Morning briefing at Google’s San Francisco office
  • Lunch and executive roundtable exchange at Airbnb HQ
  • Afternoon with Twitter
  • Evening: Bay Cruise (open to all eTS15 attendees)

Increase Networking at ETS:

Since networking is a key reason that people to attend eTS, we’re working on an optional 4-hour “UnConference” session, a brand new format in which participants design their own sessions around topics they choose. Yes, the inmates may be running the asylum…for four hours!

How?

  • We’re working with a company now in stealth mode to debut their beta networking App that simulates Tinder for business. All eTS attendees will be able to easily find others based on specific preferences.
  • Bar Crawls: We’ll reserve spaces at some of the best bars within walking proximity of the hotel around specific topics so attendees with similar interests can meet one another.

Provide Complimentary Consulting Advice:

How?

“DigMe” will be expanded to a full afternoon on October 23,  with tables provided for attendees to meet sponsors and experts in 1-2-1 appointments based on specific “pain points” they’ve provided in advance.

And, we’ll include website critique sessions based on consumer comments available to a limited number of attendees.

What’s Next:

  • The burgeoning field of Marketing Science
  • How Oculus Rift, recently purchased by Facebook, transformed British Columbia into a video game
  • New platforms like Imgur, now attracting over 140 million users/month

Lastly, to file under “You Heard it First Here” —

DigMe Takes On The Big Apple:

The “DigMe” spinoff of eTourism Summit rolls into New York City on June 10-11, 2015 at the Affinia Manhattan hotel.  Just as eTourism Summit updates attendees on all aspects of digital marketing for destinations and attractions, DigMe Summit will bring together experts and thought leaders focused on digital media and marketing science: Programmatic buying, retargeting, data driven marketing and measurement for travel.  Yes, it’s “Humans vs Robots.”

One of our targets will be the marketing/ad agencies with travel and hospitality providers — those that want to learn about the newest digital media options, updates from the key social and search platforms, trading desks, real time buying.

We’ll be asking you about your own agency during the next few weeks.

Until then, best wishes from our team to you and yours for this festive season and for a great start to 2015.  

Jake Steinman

Founder and CEO

NAJ (North American Journeys)

office: (415) 339-0578                  mobile: (415) 235-0724

www.thetouroperator.com          www.rtosummit.com 

www.activeamericachina.net      www.etourismsummit.com

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10 Top Reputation Tips from TripAdvisor

Interview with Andrew Wiens, TripAdvisor

At the eTS14 roundtable with Andrew Wiens, TripAdvisor

Based in Los Angeles, Andrew Wiens is International Sales Manager for DMOs at TripAdvisor, an eTourism Summit 2014 sponsor. His media background includes working with large country-level DMOs as well as with smaller city-level partners. We talked to Andrew, a self-admitted tech addict,  during eTourism Summit 2014 in San Francisco, where he offered the following short and sweet advice targeted at DMOs and attractions for good internet reputation management. Take ten from Andrew. 

Andrew Wiens, TripAdvisor

1.  Take ownership of your listing. It’s free and it’s easy.

2.  Upload quality photos; you simply cannot have too many.

3.  Respond to each negative review without being defensive. Shoot for 100 percent coverage.

4.  Recognize positive reviews with a genuine thank you. Aim for 30-50 percent as a minimum.

5.  Remember that you’re speaking to two audiences: the person who wrote the review as well as the rest of the world.

6.  Be original with every response to show you care. Never cut and paste replies.

7.  Match your tone of voice in a reply with the tone of the comment. Be formal when addressed that way, more relaxed when the writer’s style is informal.

8.  Be sincere. A sincere response to a negative review sets you up for an even better review.

9.  Don’t over promise. The fastest way to a crappy review is to over promise and under deliver. 

10. Be authentic. “Authenticity is everything. The second trust goes away, you’re the next Myspace and you’re gone.”

– Laurie Jo Miller Farr, contributor

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Filed under eTourism Summit San Francisco, Internet Reputation Management, TripAdvisor

Summary of eTourism Summit Takeaways, Pain Points and Suggested New Topics

A big thanks for the 64.5 percent response on our post-summit survey. Here are your replies:

Rank My Takeaways Mentions
1 Importance of creating good quality video 33
2 Gained insights into use of Facebook, Instagram, Twitter 28
3 Curate user-generated content and great storytelling from staffers, bloggers, locals as ambassadors 25
4 Importance of mobile now + apps 20
5 Future trends and new tech, incl. Drone video, Utrip and other apps, booking engines 16
6 Networking and collecting best practices from peers 19
7 How to maximize use of Pinterest 12
8 Inspirational buzz and talk from Google / Approach to Millennials 11
9 Hearing best practices from social media platforms 6
10 = Importance of authenticity 5
10 = Manipulating big data for effective targeting 5
11 Working messages and tone of voice cross-device 4
12 = Using partnerships 3
12 = DigMe 1-2-1 marketplace 3
13 Attractions Track 2
14 – 24 Working with zero budget, shoulder season marketing, team building, email marketing, native advertising, analyzing sales funnels, audience segmentation, advanced social marketing tools, China, international markets, pyramid of communication, group sales,TripAdvisor 1
Rank My Pain Points Mentions
1 Facebook changes and move to pay-to-play 22
2 Developing content strategy and increased engagement 19
3 Adequate staffing and resources 18
4 Budget and allocation 12
5 Measurement, ROI 10
6 Digital buying 9
7 Management / Admin / Politics 8
8 = Creating video 7
8 = Strategizing, Seeing tomorrow 7
8 = Email marketing 7
9 = SEM and cross-platform devices 5
10 = Effective date management 4
11 = Reaching groups and meeting planners 3
11 = Mobile development 3
12 = User acquisition / lead development 2
12 = Website development 2
13 – 17 Instagram, Twitter, training in SEO & analytics, paperless pay, international visitor development 1
Rank My Suggestions for New Topics Mentions
1 Staff presentations from Facebook & Instagram 9
2 More DMO case study presentations 8
3 Staff presentation from LinkedIn 7
3 = More on email marketing strategies 6
3 = More on content strategy 6
3 = More from digital futurologists 6
4 = Google Analytics training 5
4 = Developing digital strategy w/ online journalists, bloggers 5
4 = More SEM and SEO guidance 5
4 = Longer presentations to allow more detail 5
4 = More on ROI 5
4 = More on groups, meeting planners’ strategy 5
5 = More on mobile & Twitter strategy for attractions reaching visitors on site 4
5 = Continued focus on Attractions Track on Day 2 4
6 = More on Google AdWords 3
6 = More on video development 3
6 = Case study presentations from outside travel industry 3
6 = More new tech products 3
7 – 12 More on branding, sharing economy, Google +, additional social media platforms, GoodBlogs, big data segmentation and analysis 2
13 – 34 Expand DigMe 1-2-1, events promotion, budgeting and structuring, bring in hotels and airlines, bring in Apple and Microsoft, conduct an Instagram Walk, mobile focus, more debates, more research on patterns of aging population, geotags, paperless vouchers, more web design, more on apps, PR database management tools, marketing led automation, HomeAway and vacation rentals, more from TripAdvisor, more on partnership marketing, more on advanced social media tools, more from ‘Best Job in the World’, Ted-type talks 1

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eTourism Summit 2014 Takeaways

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The “fire hose of information” delivered at #eTS14 is not meant to put fires out, but rather to start more fires burning. Stoke your at-home fires with these top takeaways curated from 22.7K Twitter impressions across the cyberspace that was #eTS14.

Thunderous themes:

  • Be human, not corporate
  • Interact with people
  • Be a story instigator; content is still king
  • Mobile, mobile, mobile
  • China, China, China
  • Music videos: the next frontier for DMOs
  • Free FB lunch is over; use pay-to-play wisely
  • Empower the under-35s 
  • Re-visit and prioritize your SMART KPIs
  • Steal good ideas and scale them to suit

More Key Learning Points

Social Media Platforms

Facebook: Reachpocalypse is real and can only be fought with a compelling content strategy directed at sharing by a committed fan base. Be conversational, use other people’s good content, feature outstanding visuals of food and scenery. Watch for organic to drop to zero and a buy button to appear.

Twitter: is growing up fast. It’s fundamentally changed how we watch TV to make it interactive in real time, explains Brian Carr. One billion conversations are happening every 48 hours; 280M users will likely peak at 300M and 78% use on mobile will rise to 81%. Promoted tweets by keyword and tailored audiences mean it’s time to strategize on a clever campaign. Use Twitter analytics and experiment with Twitter Cards to drive traffic to your website, Lead Generation Cards to capture user interest and emails, App Cards to prompt a download. 

Pinterest: resonates as a visual bookmark which has key impact during dreaming stage. Different to other channels, it’s not about past or present, but future. Works best when you think of your content as actionable, creating travel tips, itineraries, must-dos, free things, etc. It’s OK for a business to start with 24 boards, populated with 20 vertical images on rich pins. Enid Hwang’s tip: omit hashtags, they may penalize you. 

YouTube: 71% of travel searches on YouTube are for specific destinations, trumping search at 58%. Seeing Y-o-Y growth at 179%. Destinations and attractions account for 40% of all travel video views. Talk to your visitor centers, address what people want to know when developing video content. Google’s Shaun Aukland says, “Video is the next frontier.”

Google: Importance of search through the five stages of travel: Inspiration/Planning/Booking/Experiencing/Sharing. Note that if all advertising were to move to mobile-only, that’s OK, since 50% of all travel-related searches are now on mobile. “The importance of mobile is the single most important thing you can take away from this conference,” suggests Shaun Aukland. He emphasizes that the  “under-35s understand this stuff naturally,” and management from the governor’s office right on down should “listen to them, give them budgets and let them lead.” 

Videos

  • Best-practice example: Memphis video kills it in one minute with poetry and a voice over that rivals Richard Burton. – (filmmaker Peter Bragiel, In Transit)
  • Audio is 50% of your presentation. Use music to convey desired mood of video. – (Marla Johnson, Aristotle)
  • The story must be the foreground, the destination is the background. There’s nothing unique about eating out, a nice glass of wine, a swimming pool. Golfers already know where the golf courses are.
  • Remember that Vimeo is where Millennials are hanging out. “Subscribers are currency. Forget views. It’s about how many people have relationships with you.” – (Peter Bragiel, InTransit)

      *  “What are your top 10 Google and YouTube searches? Are you answering those questions with video? Start.”  – (Shaun Aukland, Google) 

  • You can even do it in-house. Too many ideas? Break up the topics into short, separate videos.
  • “Must. Do. More. Video.” – (Melia Dicker, Visit Mississippi)
  • “Like a home video?” Fly the producer over!” – (Peter Bragiel, InTransit)

Social Media & Advanced Social Media Marketing

  • Create a social media culture in your organization. Your chief storyteller and best brand ambassador may be sitting right next to you. – (Gathan Borden, Visit Louisville)
  • Get to your community’s bloggers. You don’t have to be first to the punchline, but do pass the good stories along.
  • Join the Instagram conversation. Among Millennials with smartphones, 43% are using it. Thursday is the biggest day. – (Katie Cook, Visit Austin)
  • “What’s even better than targeting your customer? Finding other ones just like them.” – (David Fluegge, Colorado Tourism)
  • Keep your Facebook and personal pages separate. Business Manager is the solution. – (Josh Collins, Visit Williamson County)
  • Start “thinking like a publisher.” Facebook is. – (Mo Sherifdeen, Travel Oregon)
  • Advanced analytics, custom audiences, lookalike, tracking pixels, using your own mailing list: tools are your friends. “Spray & Pray approach won’t work.” – (David Fluegge, Colorado Tourism)
  • “Native beats banner.” – (Jessica Cox, MMGY Global).  Native advertising is here to stay, so join the crowd, use it wisely. – (TJ Salo, DreamPlanGo)
  • Focus on one KPI at a time or you’ll end up achieving nothing. – (Tess McBride, Sparkloft Media)
  • Consider targeting email unsubscribers to continue conversation elsewhere on social. – (David Fluegge, Tourism Colorado)

       *  “A sense of place is the filter I put every piece of content through. How strongly does it evoke a destination?” – (Talia Salem,  Brand USA)     

Attractions Social Marketing

  • Change happens. “Be tolerant of chaos.  Let the ground move under your feet every single day.” – (Geoff Drake, Monterey Bay Aquarium)
  • Make your organizational chart flat. Employees such as mountain climbers and aquarium explainers are hearing fabulous comments from the public every day. Use compelling, appealing assets from the top of the world to the bottom of the ocean. “Cute baby otters works, too.” – (Geoff Drake and Theresa Ho, Yosemite DNC)
  • Attractions now have the upper hand with flash sale sites. – (Bob Schwartz, Boston Duck Tours)

       *  Vary your content, tone of voice, even grammar and punctuation for each social media platform according to user demographics. It works. – (Amie Wong, California Academy of Sciences)     

  • Mobile bookings means massive opportunities in the tours and activities space, even a storefront within the app. – (Michael Berman, Peek and Alex Bainbridge, TourCMS)

Small Budgets, Limited Resources

  • Maximize Twitter hashtags, Instagram and Pinterest when there’s no money. – (Leslie McLellan, San Jacinto Valley CVB)
  • Video need not be expensive. Maintain the rights and use contest entries.
  • Q: If you could have only one staffer on social media, what skill set? Designer? Photographer? Writer? A: “Don’t overlook a sense of humor.” – (Marla Johnson, Aristotle)  Tip: Check out graduate school of journalism students to find all 4-in-1.
  • Prioritize your channels, prioritize mobile.
  • Develop a tone of voice. (Tucson got 824% FB organic reach with “Advice From a Cactus” post.) Use other people’s content. (ScenicWA got 2500% organic reach with one-a-day image feeds.)

MICE Marketing

  • Look in the right place. You’ll find this audience on LinkedIn. – (Mandy Volpe, UniqueVenues)
  • Use website landing pages for specific types of meetings.
  • Push notifications will be the email marketing of tomorrow.

Experiential Travel

  • The sharing economy is here to stay. Embrace it, work with it.
  • Restaurateurs see EatWith.com as complimentary (appreciation of good food and company), not competitive. – (Guy Michlin, EatWith.com)
  • International visitors wanted to “live like a local.” Now they want to “meet the locals.”
  • The physical distribution of Airbnb changes a visitor’s experience with a destination, since they primarily live an average of 5 days where hotels are not found. – (Andrea La Mesa, Airbnb)

Out-of-the-(Tool) Box Thinking

  • We have street view. We have satellite view. Why not drones? Drones are the something in-between. 
  • Not perfect is the new perfect on Snapchat. You don’t have to maintain the image of a perfection to get engagement. Watch developments: Snapchat Stories, Our Stories and Snapchat geotags…not to mention ads. – (Martin Stoll, Sparkloft Media)
  • Bitcoins have a higher and more steady demand than Expedia anticipated, and “none of us should be ignoring this innovation.” – (Michael Gulmann, Expedia Media Solutions)
  • Google CEO recommends Googlers to work one day/week out of mobile exclusively. Grounds the consumer experience, invites innovation. – (Shaun Aukland, Google)

Media Buying

  • “Data and creativity are the Montagues and Capulets of advertising. They’ll start working together with formidable results.” – (John Durham, Catalyst S+F)
  • “Mobile advertising is in its infancy,” at currently only 2% of all ads. – (Scott Swanson, Opera MediaWorks)
  • Fasten your seat belts, but you don’t have to drive your data as crazily as the big box retailers do. – (Chris Smuthy, Sojern)
  • “The real purchasing strategy lies in the why and the how – not the where and the who.” – (Sabrina Wilson, Ad+Genuity)
  • Evaluate ROI during campaign, not just at completion.
  • Use call to action words appropriately; different ones apply to awareness, inspiration, consideration, activation, re-living.
  • “Invest in storytellers. In Louisiana’s best content, you can just smell the food.”- (John Durham, Catalyst S+F)

“There are three kinds of people: those who make things happen, those who watch things happen and those who wonder what happened.”Nicholas Butler Murray (1862 – 1947) educator, former president of Columbia University

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Filed under Attractions marketing, Digital Tourism Marketing Trends 2015, DMOs, eTourism Summit San Francisco, Facebook, Google, Instagram, KPIs, Native Advertising, Pinterest, Snapchat, Social Media Platforms, Storytelling, TripAdvisor, Twitter, YouTube