Sept 15 #tourismchat: Influencers

The September 15 #tourismchat focused on influencers. For more information, check out the entire chat transcript on Chirpstory. Here are my highlights:

How do you define an influencer?

  • @MaddenMedia An online influencer is a resource. They offer up their expertise on a regular basis.
  • @scullyano Someone that shares knowledge and ideas. Blazes a trail for the industry.
  • @JoyLinDMAI Person/org that provides information or opinions that help others come to a decision, from understanding, change behavior.
  • @TourismCurrents An influencer is someone who might be a catalyst to convince others to visit your destination, attraction or lodging.
  • @WhosYourAnnie someone who helps to promote your brand, mostly because they genuinely love it.
  • @emilyforsha Someone whose message motivates or convinces others to action.
  • @TOPTravelOnline a trusted source amongst your ideal customers
  • @travel2dot0 An influencer has a specific focus, always helpful, active both online + offline and provides inspiration for others.
  • @Joe_ExpCols An influencer is a person with access to and credibility with your target audience.

Are you going after those that are generally influencers or ones that are influencing a certain niche? What niches?

  • @JoyLinDMAI Really depends on what message you’re trying to get out, what goal you have — strategic or transactional.
  • @CygnetUpdates Influencers with well-defined niches usually are more effective as resources

What is your primary goal when you are engaging an influencer?

  • @Joe_ExpCols The goal is to get the influencer to tell their world they love you. The work is in building the relationship.
  • @tourismknowhow building a relationship important with influencers who’re passionate about their area/topic: want to share passion not be used
  • @jslipski To amplify the spread of your message.(But to know if they reach targeted consumers & not just other “influencers”?)
  • @travel2dot0 Building a relationship. Nothing else matters. No relationship, no promotion.
  • @AuthenticCoast Build a relationship, share our story.
  • @NinaSunshine Be a part of their community, be helpful, interact, give in the relationship too, w/out expecting anything.

Where are your key platforms for connecting with influencers? Twitter? Facebook? Blogs?

  • @Beaumartian Twitter, TourismGeeks, conferences. I’m big on relationships.
  • @theresaoverby Twitter is number one. Blogs sometimes. Conferences are a big one for me.
  • @MaddenMedia Twitter and blogs. I think it encourages more conversation. Facebook is great, but sometimes too general.
  • @MaddenMedia Forgot about conferences! Nothing replaces a one-on-one interaction
  • @TourismCurrents Initial contact usually on his/her blog, Twitter, maybe FB or a LinkedIn Group. Next is offline, usually at a conference.

Are you utilizing your local influencers to give out of towners advice? How?

  • @emilyforsha Was waiting for @mosherifdeen to chime in but #askOR is doing a good job connecting visitors with *real* local experts
  • @WhosYourAnnie I love #askOR (@TravelOregon) and @VisitAustinTX’s (visitors guide) use of local ambassadors.
  • @VisitFingerLake I’m not a winemaker but share the winemakers tweets about harvest + local foods, etc.
  • @jslipski @visitholland is building a #loveholland platform that will source content from locals & influencers for tourists
  • @WhosYourAnnie I think local is the way to go. More people want an authentic experience of the area when they travel.
  • @SkyeGrove In Cape Town locals are the best tourism ambassadors & influencers.. Citizens are powerful ambassadors for @CapeTownTourism
  • @HTTietjen Winemakers in the Finger lakes makes sense. That’s what a traveler wants not more stuff from marketers like us.
  • @tourismknowhow can foresee a time when visitors will be most influenced by locals not tourism marketing professionals – local knowledge is key

So how are you engaging with influencers?

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