Tag Archives: My Destination

How companies are using social media to attract customers directly and indirectly

The power of social media is getting well documented and speculated on in terms of customer acquisition and retention. Both directly by those involved, and the large influence your friends and family have over what you see in your social media and search engines results pages.

Eli Pariser in his TED talk explains how not to get trapped in a filter bubble. These first crude algorithms by the powerful platforms, which could be [in the short-term] quite self-fulfilling. That you only get shown what they think, or you have said you have been interested in: to the exclusion of other content.
So, many companies are quite rightly trying to attract audiences and get into people’s flows.

Queensland tourist board, back in 2009 ran “The Best Job In The World” to huge success, effectively starting the genre of competitions to raise a company’s profile. There have been a number of competitions in 2013 alone, some with success and some not so much. Ones that spring to mind include. First Choice, a TUI company has been running their “Want to Be a Slide Tester?” inside a Facebook app. Havana Club, the rum company is offering the chance to win a gap year, and the biggest one I have seen to date is My Destination, an online travel resource with their “Biggest Baddest Bucket List”. Their winner chooses at least 25 destinations, and must visit all 6 continents, over 6 months all expenses paid.

Maybe these companies have got it. Social media is an effective inbound channel that doesn’t respect brand heritage. It’s fun. It’s current. It also has the advantage of being relatively cheaper than global TV and if you get it right, you can win big. And if by magic, if you or your friends engage, you will see their work in the future in your personalised SERPs and social flows.

Just a thought for a Wednesday.

Infographic: Your Holidays and You

I am pleased to announce the latest in travel trends conducted from consumer research by My Destination’s inbound marketing team. Back in December we conduced a survey on our site and via our social media channels. We thought that some of the results were interesting and pull it together in to this graphic. Enjoy…

a holiday-inspired infographic from My Destination

Click to enlarge
Made by My Destination, locally informed, globally inspired travel guides and information

The My Destination annual conference

This time round the ‘family meet-up’ in a swanky hotel in Bangkok, Thailand. It was an increadibly intense week of presentations, workshops, discussions, and some socialising.

I just wanted to share 2 photos.

1. The most opulent room I have ever run a workshop in – just shows the scale of the Mandarin Oriental hotel or how important I am?!

SEO workshop room at the Mandarin Oriental hotel

And. 2. The closing party was fancy dress. Can you spot which one was me?

Closing party fancy dress

The new and improved My Destination

…if that is even possible I hear you say.

Over the recent months I have put on here a number of My D references including infographics. And you know what I don’t mind, as I really believe in what we are doing here. This blog is about my industry thoughts on travel, SEO and the Internet and I feel that the bigger the internet becomes the move it needs to be really local.

After working for or with my companies who think they are local, it is a refreshing change to be apart of one that actually is. There is a strong sense of team and identity in our network [hub and franchise model] and we are all working together to make this work. Lots of local input, mixed with systems and processes from the centre can make a truly powerful collection of travel enthusiasts who can punch about their weight.

So…as of today, the 6th of September My Destination is officially unveiling the revamped design. There is more emphasis on video, images, virtual tours and real UGC. And there is plenty of more to come.

Here is a chunk from the official press release

My Destination, (http://www.mydestination.com) a leading online travel guide with a focus on local knowledge and expertise, today re-launches its portal of 68 destination websites that span the world (with a further 55 destinations literally in the making), from British Columbia in North America, to Malta, Singapore, Kenya and Tenerife. With dedicated local teams at each of its destinations who have been building ‘on-the-ground’ relationships with local businesses (51,000 in total) and communities since 2006, My Destination cements its USP of local expertise with the new site.

Showcasing local tips, local expert reviews, and exclusive offers that are only attainable through our local relationships with businesses, users enjoy the kind of information that travellers cherish, but can usually only attain once they arrive at the location (and rarely find on big name global travel guide sites). Since My Destination’s earliest days ‘local expertise’ has been its mantra and this is now vindicated as a sustainable proposition and differentiator against the omniscient Google as the latter encroaches more and more into the travel sector (first with the buyout of ITA (for bookings), then Zagat (user reviews), and now Frommer’s (editorial content)).

“By the sheer size of the web, there is quality content out there. Google has the key to find it. But for all its complexity we still think that at the end of the day it’s sheer brawn and computational power – that’s what search engines are good for, and what Google does best. But that’s a commodity. My Destination is more than that – we aim to give our users value-add. For us this is through ‘local expertise’, and there’s only one way to get that and it’s with people on the ground, not with rows upon rows of computers in the middle of the desert on the other side of the world, or an editorial team in global head office. We absolutely pride ourselves in our ‘hand-made’ approach to each of our destinations so that we offer our users the service and knowledge that only local people can provide” – Neil Waller, CEO

There is a lot of social noise today from our ever growing network and hopefully trade and industry press in the coming days.

Its official

Some images from one of the launch posts.

My Destination launch 1

My Destination launch 2

Where is Norman?

…we know.

The intrepid traveller Norm is hiding on the HP can you find him? If you are getting stuck, even my son found him!

What do you think of the site? Feel inspired?