Why Destinations Still Don’t Get Social Media

Recently, I have been thinking about what the future of DMO, CVB and destination marketing looks like.

In a recent post (Your Tourism Destination Strategy is Wrong), we elaborated on a pillar of this new strategy, the need for speed.  Simply put: Your new destination strategy is delivering valuable answers in less time than the other guy.

Unfortunately, far too many destinations do not understand this concept.  Nor do they fully understand their place in social media.  And frankly, few understand social media.

Case in point, the New Mexico Tourism Department.

For a major state DMO that actively and prominently promotes their social channels, you would assume that a simple question would be an easy request.

Our tweet to @NMTourism.

Alas, our question fell upon deaf ears.

Although it was sent on a Friday, directly to the @nmtourism account and asked for specific help, we got nothing.

Nothing on Friday, nothing on Saturday, nor Sunday and not on Monday.

Ignored. Forgotten. And frankly, a little pissed.

Not because my question was not answered…I already knew where to eat, the breakfast at Harry’s Roadhouse is amazing…no, I am pissed because for all of the talk, hype and promotion of social channels, here is a destination that missed an perfect opportunity to:

  1. Establish itself as an expert.
  2. Promote a member or support a local business.
  3. Communicate and make a direct impact on tourism revenue in the state.

But the missed it. They failed.

A quick review of recent @nmtourism tweets highlights a clear misunderstanding of Twitter.  No conversation, just tweet after tweet of promotion, specials and endless noise.

Let me make this as clear as possible, if you believe social media is a marketing tool you are wrong.

Social media is a communication opportunity.

An opportunity that can be rightfully rejected by the consumer for poor content, poor response or lack of speed.

You would never let a call to your call center go unanswered so why would you let a tweet drift into the internet ether?

Don’t have the staff, resources or strategy? No problem, I  have an answer.

Quit social media.  Stop, cancel and delete your account until you are ready to commit.

Commit or quit.

New Mexico Tourism should quit.

What about your destination?

Comment? @travel2dot0 or email.