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Finding interesting travel-related people to follow on twitter

(cc) mfilej
twitter (cc) mfilej

You may have heard it, or you’ll soon hear about it: Twitter is going mainstream and is one of THE online place to be for discussing and easily exchange with other people.
For us travel-oriented people, this is also a good place to get in the loop as well as showcase our posts, discoveries.

If you want to have “listening-people” notice what you’re doing, be aware that Tuesday is the day to raise your hand and speak on twitter land by using the #traveltuesday hashtag. A kind of advice though: don’t abuse the system.

Here are my few tips to get the most out of this #traveltuesday hashtag:
– first, tweet on tuesday. Obvious but be careful with timezones. You’d want to tweet while people are active on line. One way to verify the frequency of posts is to search for “#traveltuesday” on http://search.twitter.com
– recommend or retweet some other tweets you found useful. Remember you’re in the social media arena: it’s not always about you- be ready to share or retweet about others
– use URL shortners (bit.ly, tinyurl.com,…) to gain some “additional” characters. This is one of the features that I personally love with tweetdeck (a twitter application- that works great on almost any platform BTW- am using it on an ubuntu box)

Searching for the “#traveltuesday” hashtag is also a good way to discover interesting tweeterers to follow and exchange with.

So, are you ready to join the twitter ride?Share some twitter accounts worth following that you’ve found on the comment section

ITB Berlin 2009: ideas to leverage Web 2.0 tools for trade show exhibitors

ITB Berlin- March 2009(one of the world’s leading travel trade show):  some lucky bloggers will have a press pass in order to cover the event provided they leverage the major Web 2.0 tools during the event- those tools are mainly:

– blogging often DURING the event – giving their readers insights to this worldwide recognized event for the tourism industry,

– podcast and vidcast: audio/video are encouraged to be published online for people to listen to/watch it from different devices (iPod, multmimedia players, computers, …)

– micro-blogging via twitter: many people  consider Twitter as a waste of time-I was part of this group until I decided to play the game too and become almost addicted to it :-). But considering that Phocuswright (a well-recognized online travel industry research) and the consortium of travel-related bloggers Tips from the T- list (BTW, if you haven’ t done it yet, I highly encourage you to download and read this Tips from the T list book-which is free- but where you can find a “condensé” of advices from recognized travel 2.0 bloggers all over the world) consider it as a requirement for a blogger to be given a pass proves that twitter is  a tool to consider for covering such events.

Now what’s the point for Madagascar (the country)?

For the delegation that will go to ITB Berlin, or for our national DMO (Office National du Tourisme de Madagascar), I’ d  suggest they do the following:

BEFORE THE EVENT

* from now (January 18th): create a twitter account and clearly indicate on your profile that you are from Madagascar preparing Madagascar’s participation to ITB, have people follow you on twitter

* get in touch with potential bloggers/journalists that will come to ITB. Have those people follow you on Twitter and do the effort of updating your tweets regularly. You can give them insights or excerpts of what you’re going to do before as teasing or as a PR efforts in the view of having a wider “media” coverage for the participation to the event, or in the view of attracting more people to Madagascar’s booth during the trade show

* publish on youtube or dailymotion the promotional videos you are planning to bring to the event,

* gather all the brochures of Madagascar’s participants and upload it on scribd (I’ ve already covered this topic on “how to give an online life to your brochure”), then motivate all your participants, as well as your contacts to spread the word about it through every channel (for example through connections on any social networks that they are member of : on facebook, flickr, wayn,…)

DURING THE EVENT

* increase the number/frequency of your tweets that may announce some events that will happen on Madagascar booth,

* take photos/videos  and directly upload it for people to share it

While hints I’ m giving here are not exhaustive, you may consider having a look at “Trade Show insights”, which I particularly find useful for exhibitors to get used to as they deal with actual experiences

I’ ll also be intersted to discover other ways from you (readers of this blog) about how to leverage Web 2.0 tools for trade show exhibitors…

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