100 Years of Advancing Destinations

3 Ways to Mobilize the Media around a Meeting in Your Destination

Author: Joy Lin
Posted: April 22, 2013
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As the official destination marketing organization (DMO) for your community, you’ve spent years crafting the in-market relationships that meetings professionals can rely on time and again in order to connect them with the right partners to help execute a successful event in your destination.

Not the least of these, is your standing relationship with the local media. DMOs have the unique position of lending instant credibility to the groups that you work with, and you have considerable clout to engage media coverage of these groups. However, in a recent webinar with Steve Schell, Vice President of Sales at the San Diego Sports Commission, Steve named three important factors to take into account in order to successfully mobilize your local media around any meeting in your destination:

Make a financial statement.

Many meeting professionals are not aware of the massive benefits that are generated through local media coverage of their event. Whether you’re working with a corporate or association event, it’s up to you to make sure that both the planner and the media is aware of the overwhelming financial benefits that can result from a marriage between media and meeting. Not only are you as the DMO uniquely positioned to help the meeting professional conserve marketing dollars, attract sponsors, and promote attendance or increase ticket sales; you are also able to translate this event into economic impact figures for your destination in order to promote good will for the organization and excitement from your local community.

Find your angle.

Now that you have everyone’s attention, it’s time to connect the dots and tell the right story. The best way to serve both media and meeting is to find an angle that ties the organization directly to the community. Brainstorm with your staff and your client: What human interest pieces represent both meeting and destination? Is there a local, noteworthy guest in attendance? What topical or groundbreaking focus can you bring to light? Is the event taking place at a unique location or venue? How can the public get engaged or involved? What is the organization’s industry impact?

Help them help you.

Ultimately, a positive relationship with your media partners is what keeps them coming back to cover more meetings and events in your destination, so it’s important to keep them engaged and get information into their hands. Be sure to designate someone on your staff as the media liaison. Work with your clients to offer them complimentary media passes to events and social functions. If possible, provide a media room from which to work.

There’s no denying that media coverage on any event can benefit everyone involved, so be sure to continue nurturing this relationship with a quick list of things to help you get started:

  • Provide a list of local media contacts to your clients.
  • Help write or distribute press releases
  • Arrange interviews.
  • Involve your PR and Marketing Departments to develop story angles.
  • Help the meeting professional tailor their media plan to your destination.

Originally published at SocialTables.com.