Government Connections - Spring 2013 - (Page 12)

Working with your Visitors Bureau By Dori Kornowski Laack, CGMP Tampa Bay Convention & Visitors Bureau TRANSPARENCY, INNOVATION, INCREASED demand for greater return on meeting investments and hard economic times require meetings and conventions to be planned and managed more efficiently and seamlessly than ever before. In today’s meetings and convention world, smarter, faster and better is what convention and visitors bureaus are all about. One of the greatest resources a government planner or any meeting planner within our industry can use is a convention and visitor’s bureau (CVB) or destination management organization (DMO). They are the eyes and ears/experts of the destination under consideration or already chosen. Someone once told me that she thinks of a CVB or DMO as the Yellow Pages to planning a meeting and/or convention of any size. The reason behind her thought is that CVBs/DMOs enable you, the meeting planner, to focus on the content of your meeting/ convention and allow the destination experts to find the right fit for all of your requirements. Why reinvent the wheel? Enable your host destination CVB/DMO to do the legwork for you. The synergy between the client, sometimes a third party meeting planner, the hotels, convention centers and the host city is extremely important to enhance the success of the meeting/convention. The relationship built between the planner and the CVB/DMO can help create an even better experience for everyone. Since most CVB’s are not-for-profit, they truly do represent a specific destination and are funded through hotel occupancy taxes and/or memberships. Many CVB/DMO services are not known or realized or in that matter even tapped into at any given time. All services within a CVB/DMO are complimentary and they work with any size group, from 10 rooms per night or more! CVB’s / DMO’s represent a gamut of visitor related businesses, from restaurants, rental cars, casinos, 12 GOVERNMENT CONNECTIONS | SPRING 2013 racetracks, retail, attractions, theatres, transportation, fairgrounds, stadiums, sports complexes, hotels and convention centers. From their sales to marketing team, to their marketing/public relations and advertising team to their convention services team, CVBs/DMOs are always looking for ways to ensure you, their client, that your pre-planning meetings and meeting logistics are seamless. When it comes to understanding the best match for your meeting/ convention needs, CVB/DMO representatives are the best people to go to because they are the experts for their destination. The team can provide you with all of the “nuts and bolts” of a venue and paint a picture for you so you can visualize your event in that particular facility. The unbiased information about serv ices and facilities in the destination is invaluable. Marketing material, attendance builders, social media, customer service, promotional material, special events, registration, housing, site inspections, familiarization tours, site selections, security, speakers, local sponsorships and educational opportunities are just some of the services CVB’s/DMO’s provide to a planner and truly do make your life easier in the long run because we are our destinations experts. Doing a great job in today’s economy is much more demanding than years before. Whether there are staff reductions and budget cuts, use your CVB’s/DMO’s today and think of us as an extension of your team and remember…we are complimentary! Think of a CVB/DMO as the liaison between you, the planner, and the community/destination. The overall job is to market and sell the destination and make you look GREAT! Use your CVBs/DMOs today, so you can focus on creating an unforgettable experience for your attendees and still stay within your budget.

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Government Connections - Spring 2013

President's Letter
Editor's Letter
SGMP Nation
The Meeting Minute
Advertisers' Index
Plan Green: Why Create a Sustainable Event?
Good to Know: Do You Need Per Diem?
That's Technology: Dispelling the Myths about Strategic Meetings Management
Conference Connection: 2013 NEC & Expo
SGMP's New Headquarters
Working With Your Convention and Visitors Bureau
Starwood Looks Forward to Seeing You

Government Connections - Spring 2013