Tired of Searching for Flickr Photos of Your Destination? Automate It!

Flickr Icon[tweetmeme source=”pagetx”]As many of you already know, I am a huge fan of Flickr.  I use it personally to share photos from my life and my travels.  I also use it professionally to help promote the Colorado River Trail region with our Flickr group.  With this group, I’m able to get candid and often high-quality photos from people enjoying my destination.  I’ve used them in blog posts, on Facebook and Twitter, and even in a publication (with the photographer’s permission, of course).

Finding these photos can be very time-consuming – especially when your destination consists of 11 Texas counties.  Manually searching for town or attraction names is tedious at best.  What if there were a way to have great photography delivered to you on a daily basis?

What if you didn’t have to hunt for them any more?  What would that be worth to you?

Now.  What if I told you it was free and just takes a few simple steps to get set up?

Well, wait no more!   Continue reading

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Fish Where the Fish Are

A man's man's breakfast

Courtesy of Coos Bay-North Bend VCB/David Miller

Back in June of 2009, I wrote a post about The Ones To Watch.  In it, I highlighted two smaller communities that were using social media effectively to help promote their destinations.  And while neither of them have really left the scene, Coos Bay, OR is back with a simple lesson to us all: Fish where the fish are.   Both literally and metaphorically. Continue reading

Bam! Market Research Made Easy

[tweetmeme source=”pagetx”]Social media changes on a daily basis.  So much so, it’s hard to keep up with the newest shiny toy that shows up to solve all our marketing problems.  It’s great to experiment and try new things, but sometimes we forget about the fundamentals as we chase after the brass ring.   That’s why I get so excited when I see brands that still do the simple – and often overlooked – things in social media marketing.  Take today for instance …  Continue reading

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 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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Social Media Tips for Marketing Downtowns

[tweetmeme source=”pagetx”]From time to time, I’m asked to speak at various regional and state conferences about social media marketing and other tourism-related topics.  My most recent request came from the Texas Downtown Association.  They asked me to present during a breakout session at their annual conference in El Paso, TX on November 11, 2010.

My presentation covers the use of social media to promote and market downtowns, downtown businesses,  and downtown attractions.  I’m co-presenting with Lisa Garibay with LARGetc.   Lisa is presenting on strategy development, and I get to show the participants some examples of types of content to use and some social media best practices.  In other words, the fun part!  Sorry, Lisa. 🙂

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The Easy Button: Does Your DMO Have One?

the easy button[tweetmeme source=”pagetx”]In today’s fast paced way of life, who doesn’t want things to be easy?  Everyone is so busy, our schedules so hectic that anything that makes things easy is welcomed with open arms.  Staples, the office supply store, really nailed it with their “Easy Button” campaign.  Need toner for your printer?  Press the Easy Button.  Need your office supplies delivered on the double?  No problem – just press the Easy Button.  Staples recognized a consumer need in the marketplace, and developed a strategy to fill the void.  Genius.

The Earthquake in Haiti

I got to thinking about this strategy while following the news about the Haiti earthquake disaster on Twitter.  It was such a horrible situation.  Such incredible need.  The American Red Cross (and several other charitable organizations) responded to that need by making it easy for all of us to help.  Their method was astonishingly simple.  It’s something most of us do everyday without a second thought.  The answer?  Send a text message with “HAITI” as the subject to 90999.  The results were overwhelming.

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