“A dizzying amount of information is coming at us that we have to learn how to manage.” Jonathan Greenblatt, social entrepreneur, co-founder of Ethos Water and All for Good, speaking at DMAI’s Annual Convention
Representatives from destination marketing organizations around the world convened at the Destination Marketing Association’s International Annual Convention in a steamy Fort Lauderdale at the end of July. With a tropical storm moving towards them, they got a reminder of one of the challenges that can scare away visitors — threatening weather. During the closing general session on Friday morning, July 23, the noise from winds blowing over the roof of the Westin Diplomat Convention Center competed with the speaker. Fortunately, the storm proved to be more sound than fury and few attendees were inconvenienced by delayed flights as they left the event.
Weather always has been a factor that meeting planners have to consider when choosing dates, destinations and activities. But today there is so much more to contend with.
“I was trained by CVBs when I came up — this was where you went for information,” said Chuck Potter, meetings manager for the American Animal Hospital Association, who sat on a panel discussing empowerMint.com, DMAI’s initiative to develop a complete destination web portal and historical database. “Now, I have websites, hotel sites, print material, events and past experience. I can and do use all these sources, but processing this information takes time. I’m working through 2019 now … researching three to four cities a year takes a lot of time. Drilling down through all the websites and all, how do I get verifiable profiles?”
Potter’s comments resonate with most of us. How do we drill down through all the information coming at us from all directions? How do we find, as Potter said, the diamonds in the rough. “I know the major cities,” he said. “How do I find the lesser known cities that have value … the ones that I may have overlooked or missed?”
We, too, sort through a dizzying array of information to find gems, whether nuggets of wisdom shared by fellow planners and industry professionals, or new places discovered by our writers. We collect tips, look for trends, present case studies from events like yours, share inspiration and experiences from fellow planners and industry leaders, and talk to business leaders outside the industry to get fresh perspectives on technology, best practices and strategies.
At the 2010 Rejuvenate Marketplace in Louisville, Ky., Oct. 18-21, attendees will find educational sessions designed to help them drill down through the overload and learn how to use the information highway to their advantage. We’re also committed to making sure the sun shines inside, no matter what the weather brings.
Hope to see you there. There’s still time to register.