The DMO Download

A weekly digest on economic development and cultural, heritage tourism news.

Behold, the Icelandverse

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Check Out This Week’s Industry News for DMOs

Thanksgiving is just around the corner! With many having a busy week ahead, it’s a great time to get caught up with a news digest from Bull Moose Marketing. Every week we gather the top resources and headlines to keep you updated on industry trends and opportunities. This week, read a one-of-a-kind article about what The Avengers teach DMOs about stakeholder buy-in, learn about opportunities to celebrate indigenous people in your community, behold the Icelandverse and read about how visual storytelling can enhance your destination’s messaging to visitors. There’s a lot of great information to check out, so keep reading!

Learn About Getting Stakeholder Buy-in for Destination Branding... From The Avengers

We learn from stories— and that’s why movies are such powerful teaching tools. So when Bull Moose Marketing’s VP of Client Strategy, Ron Mattocks, told us that he learned about stakeholder buy-in from The Avengers, it didn’t come as a surprise.

It takes a village to give visitors a good experience, so getting stakeholder buy-in is essential when it comes to developing a good, consistent destination brand. Your brand represents your whole community, making it vital to involve the community in your branding efforts. Getting everyone on board is not always easy. But, as The Avengers show us, it’s possible for independent and talented individuals to join together and become one unstoppable force. In our latest blog, Ron highlights the seven important steps The Avengers took in achieving this trust and reveals how DMOs can apply this to their relationships with their stakeholders.

For even more branding insights, RSVP for our webinar, “Welcome to the Brandlands – Branding Your Destination” on Dec. 8 at 1 p.m EST.

Houston Offers Opportunities to Honor Their Indigenous Peoples

The area around Houston, TX was once home to an estimated 50 Native American tribes. Today, about 70,000 ancestors of these tribes live in the Houston area. With such a large population of Indigenous people still residing in their ancestral homeland, the area’s residents have found a variety of ways to celebrate their heritage and history. This article from Thrillist cites 6 ways Houston residents and visitors could experience and honor their ancient heritage on Indigenous Peoples’ Day, which was October 10. Between the Annual Native American Championship Pow Wow, special Native American museum exhibits or a stay in the oldest reservation in Texas, the area offered immersive ways to learn about the area’s original inhabitants.

While the event in this article were in honor of Indigenous Peoples’ Day, Houston shows us the importance of promoting activities that teach us about a destination’s local heritage. With more and more visitors craving authenticity in their travels, it’s important to offer educational experiences surrounding your destination’s history all year round.

Each destination has a diverse group of people in their community, so take time to seek out their stories. Welcome different groups in your community to create a platform to share these experiences with your visitors. This not only helps visitors learn more about your destination, but creates an opportunity to honor your neighbors.

Welcome to the Icelandverse

A new video was released this month promoting Icelandic tourism and giving many viewers deja vu. This tongue-in-cheek video mimics Mark Zuckerberg’s recent announcement video for Meta. A Zuckerberg look-alike opens the video by offering an alternative to headsets and virtual reality by welcoming viewers to a “very natural setting” where “everything is real.”

The Zuckerberg look-alike contrasts a virtual experience with the wonders of the very tangible experience of seeing Iceland’s amazing sights and connecting with real humans. This is an excellent way of demonstrating Iceland’s unique selling point in a way that stands outto the people watching the video.

The clever script and stunning views of Iceland have earned the video over one million views since early November. The video’s success is a lesson to DMOs looking to use visual storytelling in their marketing strategy. Iceland was able to relate to potential visitors by not only promoting their destination but also offering them entertaining and relevant content to enjoy.

Visual Storytelling Is More Than A Pretty Picture

Since a picture is worth a thousand words, DMOs need to step up visual storytelling in their marketing strategy. Social media created a highly visual world that made images, video and graphics indispensable – especially for destinations. Good visual storytelling on your social media feed and website is important for attracting visitors to your destination. It’s one thing to have potential visitors read about your destination. It’s an entirely different thing to see it. Simply put: good visual storytelling stirs up wanderlust in a way text cannot.

Before you prepare to tell your destination’s next story, Content Marketing Institute shares some top considerations:

  1. When telling a story, easily recognizable metaphors and representations are an effective way to communicate. For example, if you want to show that your destination is family-friendly, showcasing a mixed group of adults and children enjoying your destination may convey that message to your audience.
  2. Make sure your audience is filling in the blanks. You want to show them the important images that guide them to the correct conclusion— without explaining every little detail. Don’t over-explain your destination. Sometimes showing the right images will reveal details that a blog cannot.
  3. Visual storytelling gives you the freedom to tell stories without the confines of text-based stories. It opens up opportunities to reveal the beauty of your destination and the friendliness of your community through engaging images and video.

Paige Fay
Content Production Manager at Bull Moose Marketing. A lover of literature, a sunshine enthusiast and journalism junkie. Connect with me on LinkedIn @paigefay

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