In this episode, you will learn about why differentiation is the name of the game and why you need to provide unique, niched experiences to attract visitors to your destination from Ed Healy.
Ed Healy is Vice President of Marketing for Visit Buffalo Niagara where he is responsible for VBN’s destination marketing strategy. His responsibilities include overseeing all sales and marketing communications, including the production of an annual visitors guide, websites, e-newsletters, social media, videos, podcasts and consumer advertising, as well as media and public relations.
During his tenure at VBN, Buffalo has been named one of the National Trusts Dozen Distinctive Destinations, the No. 1 Mid-Size Arts Destination in the United States by American Style Magazine, one of 44 Places to Go by The New York Times and, most recently, one of CNN’s 16 Intriguing Things to See and Do in the U.S. in 2016.
He was the executive producer of Buffalo: America’s Best Designed City and has produced and scripted numerous promotional videos that have been viewed more than one million times on YouTube. He serves on the board of Gardens Buffalo Niagara and the marketing committee of the Darwin Martin House.
He was named the David I. Levy Communicator of the Year in 2016 by the Advertising Club of Buffalo.
Healy began his career at the National Hockey League as an editorial assistant and eventually served as editor of Goal Magazine, the NHL’s official publication. He then joined the Gannett Newspapers in White Plains, New York where he served as a staff writer for the paper’s Sunday magazine and the Arts and Entertainment editor for its southern Connecticut edition. After moving to Buffalo in the early 90s, he joined the Marketing Department of Blue Cross & Blue Shield where he served in a variety of capacities before joining Visit Buffalo Niagara in 2001.
He is an avid photographer whose work has been exhibited at galleries ranging from Buffalo’s Studio Hart to Rochester’s Visual Studies Workshop to Soho Photo in Manhattan. He had his first solo show at CEPA Gallery in 2005. He is a proud graduate of the English Department at the University at Buffalo and the Newhouse School of Public Communications at Syracuse University.
Healy grew up in West Seneca and now lives in North Buffalo with his wife, Karen. He has two adult children, Meg and Dan.
In this episode, you will learn how regions don't influence a travelers decision on where to go, and how to get them to come to your destination from Josiah Brown.
Josiah Brown is best known the New York Sherpa and has logged over 600,000 miles throughout New York State over the last 13 years. He is the brain and the passion behind New York’s Best Experiences. The Sherpa lives for recommending the best-kept secrets New York has to offer. He coined the tagline “because we’ve been there,” well, because he has. Josiah is President and CEO of New York Welcome’s You. He is a public speaker and trainer offering workshops to the tourism industry on topics including: winning first-time visitors to a destination, branding first, and the future of the group travel market.
A transcript of this episode is available here: http://destinationontheleft.com/josiah-brown/
In this episode, you will learn about providing a great customer experience and building partnerships that help you do that from Tom Mulliez.
Tom is a father, husband, entrepreneur, and the visionary behind iTREKKERS. Tom founded the company in 2014 after realizing that bringing together vetted professional captains and guides on one platform would help guarantee everyone a better experience in the outdoors. iTREKKERS is a combination of Tom’s desires to share his love of nature and to simplify the process of booking guided outdoor activities. His mission is threefold: to get people to experience the outdoors through iTREKKERS; to help people get outdoors, period, by providing useful tips and referrals; and to educate people about the outdoors and ways to be mindful.
Tom, who earned a Bachelor in Commerce from Canada’s McGill University and an MBA in marketing at Virginia Commonwealth University, was raised between his hometown of Roubaix, France, and a small town near Atlanta. His love of nature is derived from early memories of camping in the Georgia mountains with his father. For Tom, the only passion greater than a love of the outdoors is his love of family. Tom and his wife often spend time outdoors camping, at the beach, or on their boat with their three young children.
A transcript of this episode is available here: http://destinationontheleft.com/tom-mulliez/
In this episode, you will learn about how restaurants featuring local wine makes such a huge impact from Michael Warren Thomas.
Michael Warren Thomas owns Savor Life and products and hosts four radio shows focusing on gardening, wine, food, and travel. He started his first show, Naturally Green, in April 1994. He’s added several shows since then including For the Love of Food, a show all about food, wine, and restaurants; The Grapevine, a fine wine show; and Discover the Finger Lakes, about Finger Lakes destinations, events, and regional treasures. Michael oversees all aspects of the shows from production to advertising sales and promotion. The shows air on Saturday and Sunday mornings on WYSL1040 AM and 92.1 FM in Rochester, New York.
Michael and I partnered on a project in 2013 called New York Wine Spotting with the goal of getting more New York state wines into local restaurants. New York Wine Spotting is a bi-local movement encouraging Rochester restaurants to support the Finger Lakes wine region by adding more local wines to their menus. Restaurants are challenged to make Finger Lakes and New York State wines at least one-third of their wine list. The local wine loving public is encouraged to participate by becoming wine spotters. Checking restaurants wine lists for Finger Lakes wines, recognizing the restaurants that have them and asking restaurants that don’t to carry them. The local wine industry is encouraged to participate in much the same way consumers are, along with reaching out to the restaurants to introduce their wines through education and tastings.
A transcript of this episode is available here: http://destinationontheleft.com/michael-warren-thomas/