Now more than ever we see the importance of the travel and tourism industry telling their story, showing their value, and measuring the impact. We have seen proof, first hand, that “tourism is the Front Door to Economic Development.” The level and the roles at which we as DMO/CVB’s need to get involved on a local level continue to grow and increase.
We are not just the destination marketer, we’re involved in economic development, we’re community planners and crisis managers. We’re collaborators, workforce retention and recruitment coordinators, and cheerleaders. How do we explain to our board, partners, key stakeholders and community members the importance and value we as DMO/CVB’s play?
The US Travel Association’s report Made in America helps explain just this. I was made aware of this report recently by a colleague and have shared this with my board and partners. The report highlights “travel’s essential contribution to economic development.” It talks about the impact that travel and tourism has on a community and the realization that we can’t sustain without travelers. The importance of collaboration and destination improvements, to think of your community like your home, is it ready for company.
Our work goes beyond just the visitor, it starts locally providing an avenue for community members to be empowered and take pride in their community. The report also refers to how DMO’s champion the small businesses and highlight what makes us unique and compelling to our visitors. The role that we play in being inclusive with our neighbors or surrounding smaller communities. Often the DMO/CVB paves that relationship road and connects an area of communities together.
Lastly, how important it is to invest in the promotion of a community and what’s at stake if you don’t. It looks at the cause and effect relationship of reducing promotion to an area, and what that can look like for a community if that is reduced.
I would highly recommend sharing this report with your board and your key stakeholders in your communities. The time is now for us to share our stories and articulate what we do and why it matters. No one will do this for us, and we continue to see community members and partners questioning what we do and why we do it. We grow and develop our areas and communities, and we do it because our communities rely on it, they NEED us to.
In conclusion, a quote from the report says it best, “Destination marketers are in a unique role to lead the collaboration with other key organizations, engage residents, stimulate small business and even assist in the recruitment of skilled workforce and businesses.” So, thank you for all you do for the travel and tourism industry, but more importantly, for your communities!
A resource for additional: https://www.ustravel.org/research/made-america-travels-essential-contribution-economic-development
-Stephanie Busiahn, 2019 Board Chair
- Posted by MACVB
- On February 19, 2019
- 0 Comments