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Marketers talk Tech at USTOA

At the USTOA Annual Conference closing session on travel technology and innovation, four marketing executives shared their thoughts regarding mobile technology, social media and connecting with today’s constantly connected consumer. Their session was moderated by Bruce Rosard of PhoCusWright, a leading travel industry research firm.

Including a comment from the floor, these observations were shared:

“We are giving our tour managers across the world iPads and communicating both destination information and specific tour logistics to them on those devices.”
— Paula Twidale, Collette Vacations

“For our distribution channels, a color brochure is still necessary. We tried e-brochures and found that only 15 percent of our customer base will use them — the others still want to see a printed brochure during the decision-making process.”
— Steve Born, Globus Family of Brands

“Two years ago, we tried to go directly to tablet. Today, we use iPads for updates but still use print for the consumer. A hybrid of the two seems to be the answer now — the right mix.”
— Julie Canning, Banff Lake Louise CVB

“Twitter is a great way to speak, but it’s also a great way to listen. You can learn a lot about what’s being said about your destination or company through Twitter.”
— Bruce Rosard, PhoCusWright

“We use two real-life Swiss farmers in our videos, and we could never afford television commercials. But through YouTube and the Internet, we actually get a lot of traffic.”
— Alex Herrmann, Switzerland Tourism

Travel’s  Universal Truth
“I’ve visited people all over the world in places like North Korea and Kabul. What I’ve learned is that no matter where you are, people want to share their culture. People want to feel connected throughout the world. Anywhere you go in the world today, you are going to be welcomed.”
— Matt Harding to USTOA Delegates

Mac Lacy

Mac Lacy is president and publisher of The Group Travel Leader Inc. Mac has been traveling and writing professionally ever since a two-month backpacking trip through Europe upon his graduation with a journalism degree from the University of Evansville in 1978.