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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National Travel and Tourism Week Goes 2.0

NTTW logo[tweetmeme source=”pagetx”] National Travel and Tourism Week is here again (May 8-16, 2010).  This year, as with every preceding year, I watch with great interest to see what destination marketing organizations (DMOs) around the country will be doing to extol the virtues of the tourism industry and promote their destinations.

Hundreds, if not thousands, of DMOs are participating in this year’s efforts to raise awareness of the economic benefits of our industry.  The U.S. Travel Association heads up the marketing and public relations efforts for National Travel and Tourism Week, as well as U.S. Travel Rally Day.  They’ve put together a very helpful toolkit that’s full of ideas, templates, logos, and more to help DMOs run a successful campaign.

There was one thing a bit different in the toolkit this year that caught my eye – it was a PDF with social media tips for National Travel and Tourism Week.  Maybe they did it last year and I just missed it, but this (to me) was something new and fresh.  They’re asking tourism industry people on Twitter to use #traveltuesday or #travelrally when you update your status on May 11 to help increase visibility and searchability of National Travel and Tourism Week in general and Travel Rally Day specifically.  After seeing this, I started noticing that a few DMOs had gotten on the National Travel and Tourism Week social media bandwagon too.

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