It was amazing to see the power of social media during the recent Olympics to engage people, share experiences, and expand market reach.
Businesses and organizations involved in tourism, entertainment, hospitality, and sport are actively getting involved in social media, both on other sites, and adding social media to their own sites.
Through events such as the tourism and Olympic speakers at VancouverAM Tourism Association
and other groups, is is great to be able to exchange and learn, to build upon success.
Here is a interesting article I just came across in The Vancouver Sun - July 8, 2010
By Kevin Krueger, BC's Minister of Tourism, Culture and the Arts.
Tourism is vital to British Columbia, providing over $13.8 billion in annual revenues and supporting over 131,000 jobs. Growing the tourism industry has been and continues to be a high priority for the B.C. government.
We proudly hosted the 2010 Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games, which many are calling the best Winter Games ever. Some even believe British Columbians have sparked a new level of patriotism in Canada. The beautiful images of British Columbia broadcast during the Games provided an unprecedented opportunity to drive sustained tourism growth.
We are building on the momentum of the Games by marketing B.C. and all its tourism advantages around the world. Here are just a few examples of how we are working to help grow the tourism sector in B. C:
In mid-March, we launched an integrated North American advertising campaign targeting travel, lifestyle and news websites, coupled with highly effective social media and search engine marketing strategies. We're also accessing our database of more than two million consumers to send customized information encouraging both first-time and repeat visits.
Overseas, we plan to launch more than 120 cooperative advertising campaigns with key travel trade organizations, to aggressively market B.C. For example, in the U.K. we have already partnered with a leading tour operator, Air Canada and The Telegraph newspaper to reach a high-end U.K. audience of 824,000 and worldwide audience of 27.1 million.
In Japan and South Korea, we're partnering with the Canadian Tourism Commission and various tour operators in multimedia campaigns encouraging consumers to visit B.C. this summer, with very positive results.
Here at home, we've launched a campaign to persuade more B.C. residents to "staycation" this summer. This campaign began in June and includes TV and print advertising, as well as special contests and promotions designed to excite British Columbians about vacationing right here at home.
We've also enhanced the HelloBC website
by increasing interactive options for maps and information to help visitors enjoy some of our most spectacular driving routes. We have doubled grant funding for our smaller visitor centres.
On June 24, tourism got a major boost with the signing of the Approved Destination Status (ADS) agreement between Canada and China. With the ADS designation, Canadian tourism businesses and destination marketing organizations -- including ours in British Columbia -- can now actively market within China.
Further, tour operators to the Chinese can organize, promote and advertise leisure group travel packages to Canada. This was not previously allowed so we are very excited about the potential this market holds for us.
The agreement is expected to boost the number of Chinese visitors to B.C. by 10 per cent in 2010, 15 per cent in 2011 and an additional 15 per cent for 2012. Last year, 160,833 Chinese visitors came to Canada, with more than half visiting British Columbia.
We will take full advantage of this opportunity. The B.C. government will continue to work with the Canadian Tourism Commission to maximize B.C.'s exposure to potential Chinese tourists through expanded marketing campaigns highlighting the many tourism opportunities B.C. has to offer.
These campaigns will include travel stories on B.C. in print, online and broadcast to increase awareness in China of B.C. as a highly desirable travel destination, including cooperative advertising of packaged group holidays available through selected tour operators. This will benefit tourism throughout British Columbia.
We have a strong plan and our team of highly talented people is dedicated to making Super, Natural British Columbia one of the world's top vacation destinations. The result will be a growing tourism sector in every region of the province.
Interesting article. What are your thoughts? Is this helping tourism in Vancouver and BC? What do you think is most effective? What are other tourism, entertainment and hospitality areas doing well?
Contact Synergy today for a complimentary strategy session to discuss your businesses' social media goals and how Synergy Connect can help you start achieving these today. Call us today at 604-681-0516 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Kathy Woolverton, President of Synergy
, proudly holding the Vancouver 2010 Olympic Torch at a Vancouver AM Tourism Association