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How to Market auxiliary Destinations

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Presented by Toronto Star Travel Editor Jim Byers at the Canadian Tourism Commission's annual international Gomedia Marketplace September 2011.

Presented by Toronto Star Travel Editor Jim Byers at the Canadian Tourism Commission's annual international Gomedia Marketplace September 2011.

Published in: Technology, Travel

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Transcript

  • 1. GO MEDIA 2011 COMPETING WITH THE BIG BOYS (OR GIRLS)
  • 2. Ignore the trends
    • Zig, don’t zag. Be different. Italy is #1 in wine but a great story a few years back was on Italian beer.
    • Try the opposite of what everyone else is talking about. I’d rather read about a great chef who bucks the trends and uses weird ingredients from all over the world than someone growing beets on the roof.
  • 3. Ignore the people who pay your salary
    • Hotels might pay your bills but most Hilton or Marriott hotels aren’t good travel stories. Think of interesting characters instead of buildings. We all love pictures of people, right? That’s why we like Facebook!
  • 4. Be Yourselves
    • Points of differentiation are important. I loved the Keister Family Fiddlers at Go Media. We don’t have that in Toronto.
    • Your readers don’t WANT you to be Vancouver or Montreal. Really they don’t.
  • 5. Think Small
    • - Any mention is a good mention. Richmond isn’t going to get the same ink as Vancouver. But a short story on the night market or a fun item on the cream puff pastry place at the Asian mall is better than no story.
    • In other words, there’s nothing wrong with page 10. Or a nice blog item somewhere. Or a Twitter mention, for that matter.
    • Try me for our “fare deals” section. We do that twice a week and highlight bargains from all over. They’re short items, but, hey, it’s a mention!
  • 6. Think like a journalist
    • Know your editor. I like my stories a certain way but the Globe is different. Our audiences also are different. One paper or outlet might do more high-end, another might be more adventure oriented.
    • Know your freelancers. Some are great spa writers, some do shopping. Some do wine. Try to see what they’re best and match them with the right trip/story.
    • Have fun. Be creative. Be goofy, even. It’s travel, not nuclear fission.
  • 7. Think Visuals
    • Photos are critical for editors. Really good lighting and people shots (see the Facebook mention earlier) are HUGELY important. Try not to make them look too perfect and too staged. More natural shots are better than ….
    • PHOTOSHOP. I hate it! Fake-looking lakes, impossible clouds. Try shots that look more like what I’d actually see if I visit.
    • Image banks are very helpful. Winnipeg gave me some awesome photos for a story I’m doing. Make them easy for the media to access.
    • Did I say Photoshop was the devil? Oh, yeah. I did.
  • 8. GET MY ATTENTION
    • Keep it short. Avoid sending media those eight-page items that list every hotel that has a new flat-screen TV. Two or three items, nice and tidy.
    • Avoid the usual, “Dear Jim, it’s Halloween and I thought you’d be interested in…” Nope. Boring. That goes straight to the trash. Sorry, to the recycling bin.
    • Hit me with something fun or even sexy. Don’t write “Hey, stupid, here’s a good story.” And perhaps “Free sex for all guests visiting Moncton this weekend” is a bit much. But, like I said, have a little fun.
    • Need to reach me? [email_address] . Twitter: @jimbyerstravel

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