Journalist Describes Economic Impact of NTA Initiatives | Six Social Media Fundamentals
November 30, 2010
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Journalist Describes Economic Impact of NTA Initiatives
Six Social Media Fundamentals
Becoming a CTP Just Got More Affordable
Tourism Cares Inducts Bob Whitley Into Hall of Fame
OTTI Offers International Travel & Tourism Market Webinar
December Courier Recaps Convention Highlights
NTA Appreciates Its Sponsors
CLEAR Program Relaunches at Orlando Airport
Online Toolkit Shares Economic Survival Strategies and Stories
Industry News and Updates
NTA Job Center — Collette Vacations and Wanderlust
Posted yesterday on TravelPulse.com, David Cogswell’s "NTA’s Globalization for the Little Guy" details NTA’s efforts to facilitate travel to and from the United States, Canada, China and Latin America, and describes the benefits of the association’s increased global awareness:
"These and other initiatives will put NTA onto a new playing field and demonstrate that a trade association can gather the collective bargaining power to help its members take advantage of the benefits of globalization that have previously been limited primarily to large multinational corporations."
Moving from the global view to the personal picture, Cogswell captures NTA members’ spirit and sense of purpose:
"… There was a strong sense of belief at this year’s NTA conference that tourism is more than just a great business, but also has a lofty role to play in the larger theater of life. People who work in travel often express a belief in a higher purpose for the industry than just bringing in the weekly paycheck. … That feeling was palpable at this NTA conference."
You can read Cogswell’s entire story here.
According to a national poll of 500 small business owners or managers, 52 percent of small businesses believe that having a social media presence is important. Yet, writes social media blogger Pam Dyer, "only 16 percent of U.S. small businesses say they use social media to engage their customers." Dyer’s blog gives the following fundamentals for using social-media channels to build customer relationships:
1. Be a good listener: Once you sift through the social media noise and find the kinds of people with whom you wish to engage, take the time to hear what’s being said before jumping in.
2. Think of social media as a conversation rather than a marketing vehicle: In many respects, social media is like a giant room with millions of people in it, talking about thousands of subjects. Your task is to locate the part of the conversation that matters to you and find a way to participate. And, just like a conversation in the real world, if you bully your way in and try to dominate, people will just turn away.
3. Join in: You may as well participate, because the conversation goes on whether you choose to take part or not. By participating, you get to tell your part of the story.
4. Consider your objectives: Whether you want to improve awareness of your brand, listen for customer comments about your business, or track what your competitors are up to, it’s important to establish your objectives and focus on them. Otherwise, social media can be incredibly time-consuming.
5. Inform rather than "me-form": When you encounter a post, or series of posts, that you can add value to, do it. But you would do well to think in terms of contributing to the conversation rather than making a blunt sales pitch.
6. Understand your target audiences: Knowing the needs and engagement style of the people you want to connect with will give you a much better chance of having a positive experience with the conversations you join.
Studies have shown that earning professional certifications can lead to higher salaries and advancement in an industry. NTA’s Certified Tour Professional program helps travel professionals gain a better understanding of day-to-day business operations and opportunities, while demonstrating their commitment to their careers and the industry.
To help more members obtain this valuable industry recognition, we’re offering a 75 percent discount to participants who finish the program in two years—a $450 savings.
Now, when you register to become a CTP you pay only $150 of the $600 program cost. And, if you graduate within two years of your enrollment date, $150 is all you’ll pay. However, after two years from the date of enrollment, if you haven’t graduated from the program you will be invoiced for the remaining cost, $450. (The CTP program is designed to be completed in one year. It is a study-at-your-own-pace program, though, so, there is no limit on how long you can work on earning your CTP.)
Visit NTA Online to learn more about becoming a CTP. Ready to sign-up today? Just submit this enrollment form and you’re on your way to completing the only continuing education program designed by packaged travel professionals for packaged travel professionals.
Get a jumpstart on your CTP by participating in the CTP preparatory Webinar on Financial Management this Friday, Dec. 3, at 1 p.m. (ET). E-mail Lisa Thompson for more details.
The late Robert E. Whitley, longtime president of the United States Tour Operators Association, will enter the Tourism Hall of Fame, said Bruce Beckham, executive director of Tourism Cares.
"The Tourism Hall of Fame honors individuals who, among other business accomplishments, have made significant personal contributions to travel and tourism through philanthropic, volunteer and mentoring activities," Beckham said. "Bob Whitley certainly embodied all these attributes."
Whitley, who died in May, was a founding board member of Tourism Cares and its predecessor, Travelers Conservation Foundation. He served as president of USTOA for 32 years, traveling the globe as a worldwide ambassador and advocate of the tour operator industry.
The induction will take place on Dec. 10 during the opening luncheon of the USTOA Conference in New Orleans. Since the creation of the Tourism Hall of Fame in 1998, 19 men and women have been inducted.
A breakdown of the five-year forecast for each of the top 10 international travel and tourism markets will be the focus of a webinar at noon EST on Thursday, Dec. 9, hosted by the U.S. Department of Commerce, Office of Travel and Tourism Industries and the Commercial Service Travel & Tourism Team. The cost of participating in the webinar is $50.
The hour-long webinar will focus on OTTI’s five-year Travel Forecast (and the assumptions behind the forecasts) for each of the top 10 countries and other select visitor-origin markets.
Register for the webinar here. Questions? Call Anastasia Xenias at +1.212.482.1856, Julie Heizer at +1.202.482.4904 or Mark Brown +1.202.482.4754.
Ready to catch up on all the business, fun and education NTA offered during Convention ’10? The December issue of Courier is your source. Read what your fellow NTA members said about their experiences in Montréal — from the Opening Ceremony to the Destination Pavilion, educational sessions and the Tuesday Night Fever party. The Convention coverage section also features tips for successful event follow up, articles from two Montréal seminar presenters and details on a few of the Pre-Fam tours. Destination stories in the final 2010 Courier highlight Latin America, the Rockies, the U.S. Smoky Mountain region, Alabama, Louisiana and Mississippi.
Advertisers in this issue:
Alabama Tourism Department | The Berkely Group (TPP) | Capital One Merchant Services | Colorado Springs CVB Experience Colorado Springs at Pikes Peak | Empire State Building Observatory | Stoney Nakota Resort
March Issue — Ad Space: Jan. 5; Editorial: Dec. 6
Features/Destinations: Accommodations, Arizona, Colorado, New Mexico, Utah, Branson, Africa, Mediterranean, Toronto & Niagara Region (New York and Canada).
April Issue — Ad Space: Jan. 25; Editorial: Jan. 3
Features/Destinations: 2011 MONTAGE issue, U.S. Civil War, Historic Homes & Gardens, Arkansas, Oklahoma, Texas, Mexico, U.S. Antebellum South (Alabama, Georgia, Louisiana, Mississippi, South Carolina, Tennessee), New York City, The Caribbean
May Issue — Ad Space: Feb. 23; Editorial: Jan. 31
Features/Destinations: Beach Destinations; National Parks; Wine and Culinary Tours; Iowa; Kansas; Missouri; Nebraska; Northwest Territories, Nunavut & Yukon; Chicago; Italy.
Year after year, NTA is blown away by the support our sponsors provide for all NTA events. This year is no exception. NTA’s 2010 sponsors were top notch and we are grateful for their commitment to the association. Here’s the bottom line: Convention ’10 would not have been such a great event without the dedication of NTA’s sponsoring members.
Now’s your chance to join NTA’s prestigious list of sponsors and become a sponsor in 2011. Sponsorships are available for MONTAGE ’11, CONTACT ’11 and Convention’ 11. All are sold on a first-come, first-served basis, so make your plans now! For more information, check out our 2011 Media Kit (pages 9-15) or contact Karla DiNardo at 800.682.8886, ext. 4232, or +1.859.226.4232.
The CLEAR program, which enables travelers to bypass security checkpoints, reopened at Orlando International Airport earlier this month. The biometric-based registered airport security traveler program lets its members speed through security in their own designated lanes. Members are identified at one of the five verification machines at the Orlando airport, which use fingerprints and iris scans to identify travelers for airport security.
First launched in 2005, CLEAR had 200,000 subscribers and operated in 18 airports, before the original owner, Verified Identity Pass Inc., abruptly shut down in June 2009. New owner Alclear LLC is honoring original members’ contracts and accepting applications for annual membership, which costs $179.
The program also is in operation at Denver International Airport, and the company hopes to expand to other airports in the coming months.
Cultural and heritage tourism attractions and organizations that have struggled because of the economic downturn can now find a virtual shoulder to lean on. The Heritage Tourism Program at the National Trust for Historic Preservation has just completed a new online "survival toolkit" at www.preservationnation.org/survival-toolkit. Developed after hundreds of hours of outreach to national and state leaders in cultural and heritage tourism over the past year, the toolkit describes 11 key survival strategies and includes 80-plus survival stories to showcase these strategies in action.
This user-friendly Web site allows visitors to search for stories by region of the country, type of attraction or organization, and/or the survival strategy or strategies that the story illustrates. The toolkit also includes links to other online resources to help cultural and heritage tourism attractions and organizations stay afloat during tough times.
- Terry Dale has been named the new president of the U.S. Tour Operators Association.
- Mexico’s new secretary of tourism, Gloria Guevara, addressed worries about safety and security in her country during the recent "Mexico: Perception vs. Reality" Webinar at TravelWeekly.com.
- The U.S. Travel Association has launched www.YourTravelVoice.org as a way for industry professionals and travelers to share their concerns and recommendations on air travel security screening.
The links in this article are not monitored by NTA staff. Any bad links, expired pages, etc. are due to the constantly changing nature of Web sites.
Collette Vacations — Air Operations Supervisor
Collette Vacations currently is seeking an Air Operations Supervisor for our Pawtucket, Rhode Island, office. This person will be responsible for the supervising, scheduling and coordinating work of all air operations staff in an effort to increase revenue and maximize profit. The supervisor will act as liaison to the director for all operational functionality within the air department and collaborate with other departments. Additional responsibilities include strong time management skills with focus on operational efficiencies and customer retention. As well, they will be responsible for first tier air emergency response on and off hours, to the director’s second tier. To view a full job description and apply online please visit www.ColletteVacations.com/careers.cfm.
Are you a competitive person? Are you a producer, not a manager? Can you work well within a system? Can you take direction but also operate with little supervision and without subordinates? Do you have prior experience selling conceptual or professional services to marketers? Do you possess a balanced mix of sales drive and problem-solving skills? Can you nurture and maintain positive relationships with prospects? Do you have the focus to only pursue business that’s a perfect fit?
A 2010 Capital Area Best Places to Work
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