Smart Businesses Watch Conference Hashtags

[tweetmeme source=”pagetx”]For the last couple of days, Texas CVBs have converged on San Marcos TX for the 2011 Texas Association of Convention and Visitors Bureau’s Annual Conference.  I am fortunate to have joined them for the first time in several years.  The educational content has been first-rate and the San Marcos CVB and Embassy Suites San Marcos have done a terrific job hosting us.

But they weren’t the only ones who provided excellent customer service and hospitality.  There’s a local Twitter account called TwitBiz San Marcos (@TwitBizSM) that helps shine a light on some of the great local businesses and restaurants located in San Marcos.  They do a hell of a job. Continue reading

How Do You Say Thank You? Like This.

[tweetmeme source=”pagetx”]About a year ago, I was preparing for a presentation on social media marketing for a small town business group.  The focus was going to be about how small businesses could benefit from the use of social media to market their products and services.  I wanted to provide them with some examples of how businesses just like them are using social media marketing and seeing results.   Who better to ask for ideas than the social media world itself?

I put out a request for examples on Twitter and within the day I had several leads to research.  Becky McCray sent a few ideas to me, but one in particular stood out.  Continue reading

National Tourism Week Goes Social – 2011

[tweetmeme source=”pagetx”]About this time last year I wrote about some cool social media promotions that DMOs around the country were doing to help celebrate National Travel and Tourism Week.  This year, National Travel and Tourism Week is May 7-15, 2011.  Hundreds of events will be held throughout the week to inform the public about the economic impact that travel has in our communities.

Many groups are holding local rallies.  Some are doing outreach to the media.  And others are stepping up their advocacy efforts to elected officials.  Some DMOs are including social media as a major component of their National Travel and Tourism Week activities.

Last year, I featured the Abilene Convention and Visitors Bureau, Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority, Visit Indiana, and Visit Jacksonville, Florida.  Swing by the U.S. Travel Association for all the information and resources you need to launch an effective campaign in your destination.  And if you tweet, be sure to add #TravelTuesday and #travelrally to your tweets on Tuesday, May 10 to help spread the word.

Are y’all ready for round 2?

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Customer Service … IRL (gasp!)

SCRTD - Del Amo Customer Service Center RTD_1119_11[tweetmeme source=”pagetx”]I felt inspired to write a post about good customer service.  There are lots of examples of good online or social media-based customer service out there.  This post, however, is about customer service IRL … meaning face to face … without computers … or <gasp!> Facebook.  In other words, no technology was harmed in the writing of this post.

If you’re cool with that, then let’s proceed.  I think you’ll enjoy this.

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West Texas’ Social Media Rock Star – Shanna Smith Snyder

[tweetmeme source=”pagetx”]West Texas is known for a lot of things.  Big skies, ranching, oil, rugged terrain …  One thing it hasn’t always been known for is being a hotbed of social media activity.  Until now.  Enter Shanna Smith Snyder with the Abilene Convention and Visitors Bureau (ACVB).

Shanna and I first got acquainted on Twitter, where I became an instant fan of her work with the CVB in Abilene.  After building our online relationship for a while, we finally got to meet at a Texas Travel Industry Association function.  Shanna impressed me so much that I asked her to speak at a seminar series my organization hosted called “Social Media for Economic Development and Community Marketing”.  As I expected, she did a fantastic job getting our attendees to realize that social media marketing was not out of reach.

I think her story will really resonate with a lot you out there.  ACVB is a small- to mid-sized bureau that does all their social media marketing in-house.  Yes, it’s possible and yes, it can be done.  Shanna is living proof.

So here’s my one-on-one interview with Shanna Smith Snyder.

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Social Media and Simple Acts of Kindness

KINDNESS[tweetmeme source=”pagetx”]This isn’t a cheesy post about how happiness makes the world go ’round.  Instead, it’s a true story about three people who just wanted to help each other out.  This story does have a happy ending, but there’s a twist.  Read on.

A couple of weeks ago I got a DM from David Kaufman with DK Worldwide.  David and I have never met IRL, but have chatted with each other via Twitter on several different occasions.  His DM said that he had a friend living in Austin, TX who was interested in getting into marketing.  He asked if I would mind sitting down with her for a few minutes to see if I could offer her any insight into marketing, and just do some networking with her.

To some of you, this might seem like an unusual request.  To meet with someone I didn’t know?!  On the recommendation of  someone else I didn’t know?!  Crazy, right?  Not to me.  I have first-hand experience with the incredible power of social media – mainly Twitter.  There are several people who I consider to be trusted friends and colleagues who I initially “met” through exchanges on Twitter.  I’ve been fortunate to actually meet some of them in person, but many still remain as mainly online relationships.

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Social Media Marketing for #Arts Organizations

[tweetmeme source=”pagetx”]I got to do something pretty cool on Monday.  I was asked to present advanced social media marketing ideas to attendees at the State of the Arts 2011: Leading the Creative Economy Conference held in Austin, TX.  This conference was attended by representatives from various arts-related organizations from all over Texas.

Hosted by the Texas Commission on the Arts, City of Austin Cultural Arts Division, Texas Cultural Trust Council, and Texans for the Arts Foundation, this conference brought like-minded people together to discuss issues facing the creative economy.

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