World Travel Market (WTM), the leading global event for the travel industry, is for the first time reaching out to the global online travel community with the launch of a newtravel blog, a number of social media webinars, and an extensive social media program taking place during the exhibition.
The all encompassing WTM Social Media Program has been designed to connect with the thousands of people and companies that make up the online travel community, to encourage interaction year-round, and especially during World Travel Market 2011.
The World Travel Blogspot will go live in September, encouraging the travel communities around WTM to share, tweet, and comment. The blog will look to cover travel-related topics of interest to the international travel community drawing on WTM’s rich content and official program of events.
WTM has also identified a demand within the travel community for education on how to develop, launch, manage, and measure effective social media campaigns. The paid-for social media webinars that will be published during October will feature an underlying theme of “Social Media Business Class – how to future proof your travel business.”
During the four days of WTM (Monday, November 7–Thursday, November 10), an extensive program of social media activities have been planned to educate and engage participants.
The highlight of the program is the two-day Social Travel Market (STM) taking place Wednesday, November 9 (North Gallery Room 10) and Thursday, November 10 (North Gallery Room 4/5). The STM will be made up of competitions, keynote speeches, panel debates, and practical workshops covering a range of topics such as:
• The ROI of paid travel blogging
• Video – Your most important social media tool?
• The perfect travel tweet
• How to supercharge your blog
STM (@socialtrav) is free to attend for WTM visitors and is organized by travelwriter Mark Frary (@markfrary) and The Sunday Times Online Travel Editor Steve Keenan (@stevenkeenan).
“Social Travel Market is aimed at bloggers, digital marketing executives, PRs, and anyone in the travel industry interested in tools such as Facebook, WordPress, Twitter, and the next generation of networks such as Google+,” said Frary, “We have a cracking line-up of speakers confirmed already, including Fortune Cookie’s Justin Cooke, Granturismo’s Lara Dunston, VisitBritain’s Pleasance Coddington and Juantxo Llantada of the Valencia Regional Tourist Board, with more big names to come.”
On Monday, November 7, the International Federation for Information Technologies in Travel and Tourism (IFITT) Conference will be hosted at WTM with keynote speaker Professor Dimitrios Buhalis, e-tourism specialist from Bournemouth University.The workshop is set to discuss technology and social media-enabled real-time service management in hospitality and tourism.
Tuesday, November 8, Platinum Suite 1, 1400–1500 hours plays host to Genesys, The Travel Technology Consultancy, and their session on “Making the Most of Social Media.” Paul Richer, Senior Partner of Genesys, will discuss how to make social media work for your organization.
Also on Tuesday, November 8, “Travel Bloggers Unite” will be presenting case studies to help demonstrate the best practice for working with travel bloggers and how they can provide impressive ROI for your organization. This is taking place in NorthGallery Room 8 from 1530–1630 hours.
World Travel Market Exhibition Director Simon Press said: “Social media continues to grow in its influence over all industries. Tourism being very consumer-led needs to embrace, engage, and utilize the tools that are available. WTM is looking to help educate the industry with the expanding social media program and input from some of the leading companies that specialize in social media.”
Delegates will be encouraged to tweet and submit questions during the panels and presentations. For the full WTM event program, including dates of sessions and timings, please visit www.wtmlondon.com/eventprogramme .