100 Years of Advancing Destinations

New Plans Slated to Cleanse and Grow Exclusive DMO Meetings Database


Thursday, February 12, 2015
Destination Marketing Association International and Columbia Books Information Services to Enhance Accuracy and Breadth of Meetings Data for DMO Prospecting

Destination sales professionals will access invaluable planner information from Destination Marketing Association International’s (DMAI) empowerMINT initiative, through improved data hygiene and supplemental meetings and contact information supplied by Columbia Books Information Services (CBIS). The data platform will relaunch in summer of 2015.

“Today’s planners expect sales professionals to be targeted with their prospecting, informed about their meetings, and timely in their outreach,” said DMAI President and CEO Michael Gehrisch. “As we leverage data partnerships and the competencies of CBIS, toward improving the database, destination sales professionals will be better able to address planner needs with more robust intelligence.”

The empowerMINT initiative positions destination sales professionals as the preferred local experts who assist meeting planners in finding a fit for any size meeting. The database, as one of two technology products supporting that mission, has operated as an exclusive resource for destinations to share information and prospect for meetings business for twenty years. As a result, ongoing activity has led to a gradual accumulation of obsolete, legacy information in the database.

CBIS, an information publisher, has extensive experience in capturing and delivering relevant and highly accurate data for over 40 years. Since its acquisition of Thompson, which included The Salesman’s Guide, CBIS now boasts key information on meeting preferences and locations for over 16,000 U.S. associations and 6,000 corporations that will be integrated into the current empowerMINT offering. CBIS databases include AssociationExecs.com, MeetingPlannerLists.com, Association Meetings and Event Planners, Corporate Meetings and Event Planners, and Lobbyists.info.

“We are very excited to work with DMAI on taking the empowerMINT initiative and its data to the next level,” CBIS President Joel Poznansky. “DMAI has led the way with aggregating important, useful information for those working to identify the right meeting planners for their cities. Incorporating the data skills and additional information collected by Columbia Books will create the preeminent offering in North America.”

Spearheaded by DMAI’s Sales and Marketing Committee, the empowerMINT enhancement project will occur in two phases:

  1. Cleansing of Existing Data and Matching of Records
    CBIS will conduct an initial review of existing empowerMINT records, making appropriate updates and matching those records with those found in CBIS databases. Then, CBIS will consistently make updates to matched organization and contact records every six months moving forward.
     
  2. Addition of New or Missing Data
    empowerMINT will import through a one-way interface selected records from the CBIS databases for destinations to search and view.

“As sales professionals, we have had a long history of collaboration through empowerMINT,” said Rachel Benedick, Vice President of Sales and Services with VISIT DENVER and Chair of DMAI’s Sales and Marketing Committee. “As not only users and contributors to the database, but also stewards of the quality of information found there, the Committee is looking forward to ensuring that empowerMINT continues to be an important and constructive resource for the entire industry.”

The Committee has outlined a plan to finance the enhancement through a consolidation of subscription levels under DMAI’s empowerMINT initiative. The project will eliminate the current unit MINT pricing in the 2015-2016 subscription cycle, and raise empowerMINT subscription rates nominally, according to each destination’s total budget.

“Our collective knowledge and expertise on meetings business will always be one of our greatest assets. DMAI always strives to instill a spirit collaboration between destinations through the empowerMINT initiative,” said Gehrisch. “This data partnership will complement those efforts by continually ensuring that the information our sales professionals find in our database is valuable, accurate, and complete.”