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Destination On The Left

Destination On The Left is a podcast focused on the travel and tourism industry that explores successful collaborations, creative marketing ideas and best practices. Interviews are a mix of Destination Marketers, Industry Leaders, Consultants and businesses in the industry. We explore consumer marketing programs and travel trade marketing programs. This podcast provides an opportunity for professionals in the travel & tourism industry to share what they have learned and successes that they have achieved.
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Now displaying: March, 2017
Mar 29, 2017

In this episode, you will learn about non-profits in the travel and tourism industry from Jacob Taddy.

Jacob Taddy is the founder and Executive Director of Onwards, a non-profit organization connecting people through unique travel experiences that empower local entrepreneurs. After working on service projects in the Navajo Nation, Skid Row in Los Angeles, and construction sites throughout the US and the Caribbean, Onwards was born when founder Jacob Taddy recognized a need to shift how he, and others, were talking about and providing domestic and international aid. Onwards seeks to shift from short-term solutions and volunteer projects to long-term, sustainable economic development. By providing microloans and business training to local tourism based business owners, Onwards empowers local entrepreneurs to tap into the largest industry on the planet, tourism, to create jobs and direct tourism dollars into communities that need it.

What you’ll learn about in this episode:

  • What the next generation of travelers is looking for
  • How the idea for Jacob’s non-profit organization, Onwards, was born and how it finds ways to direct travelers to communities that need it
  • How Onwards creates authentic experiences
  • Onwards level of integrity behind what they do
  • How Onwards top priority is providing the biggest benefit to the community
  • Jacob’s biggest challenge: convincing people to go places that they’ve never heard of, and how he overcomes it
  • Why Onwards puts the faces of entrepreneurs at the forefront of their organization
  • How Onwards is showcasing models of community development in Haiti & the DR
  • The benefit of non-profits not treating each other as competitors
  • The importance of focuses on strengths in a partnership

Ways to contact Jacob:

Mar 15, 2017

You have heard our guests talk about co-opetition- that really cool thing that happens when competitors come together to collaborate on a project or program in order to create something bigger than they could have done on their own. This podcast recaps ten strategies for successful collaborative partnerships that we have learned from our guests.

What you’ll learn about in this episode:

  • Strategy #1: Communication — why clear communication requires talking on the phone or in person — not just through email (David Holder)
  • Strategy #2: Bring the right resources to bear — why you must know when to bring in outside help when you don’t have the necessary expertise needed for a project (Ralph Thompson)
  • Strategy #3: Set realistic expectations — why it’s so crucial to make sure that all project collaborators understand what realistic project success looks like — especially in the short term (Meg Vanek)
  • Strategy #4: Form relationships that lead to partnerships — why networking is the way that successful collaborative partnerships get off the ground (Kelly Rapone)
  • Strategy #5: Have a shared vision — why it’s so important that all collaborators envision the same outcome for a project (Jennifer Ackerson)
  • Strategy #6: Find commonality — why successful partnerships have to come from a place where partners share something in common (Leah Mueller)
  • Strategy #7: Set deadlines — why you need doers (not talkers) in your partnerships (Leah Mueller)
  • Strategy #8: Ask for solutions — why you shouldn’t present solutions to your partners or stakeholders and should instead bring them into the discussion (Dan Fenton)
  • Strategy #9: Have a can-do attitude — why you need to approach every project with the attitude that it will succeed (Kelly Blazosky)
  • Strategy #10: Be Genuine — why you should underpromise and overdeliver in your partnerships (Kristy Kennedy)
Mar 8, 2017

In this episode, you will learn about how New York is consistently growing their tourism efforts from Gavin Landry, the former Executive Director of Tourism at Empire State Development.

Gavin Landry joined Empire State Development (ESD) as the Executive Director of Tourism in March of 2013. Mr. Landry’s appointment came at a time of continued tourism growth across New York State and amidst the launch of a series of new tourism initiatives by Governor Andrew M. Cuomo. Thanks to the support of Governor Cuomo, tourism has become the fourth largest employer in the State.

As former Executive Director, Mr. Landry lead the iconic I LOVE NEW YORK marketing campaign where he developed and implemented new initiatives to further the State’s positive tourism growth. Mr. Landry also worked closely with the New York State Tourism Advisory Council, which provides input and advice regarding the state’s tourism efforts.

Before joining Empire State Development, Mr. Landry ran Landry Hospitality Consulting Services, where he provided full-service hospitality consulting to hotel developers and owners. Mr. Landry ran commercial hotels for a professional management company in markets such as Detroit, MI; Columbus, OH; Charlotte, NC, and Somerset, NJ. He has also served as president of the Saratoga Convention and Tourism Bureau, a post he held for 12 years. During that time, he served as the President of the NYS Association of CVB’s (2000-02). Gavin was the recipient of the 2016 Excellence in Leadership Award by the NYS Tourism Industry Association. A graduate of Cornell University, Mr. Landry served as an adjunct professor at New York University’s (NYU) Tisch Center for Hospitality, Tourism, and Sports Management for five years where he taught graduate courses in various disciplines of the tourism industry. In February of 2013, Mr. Landry was the recipient of an award for teaching excellence from NYU, one of 20 given across nine teaching disciplines. Mr. Landry is a member of the Cornell Hotel Society.

What you’ll learn about in this episode:

  • “It’s all here. It’s only here.”: How Empire State Development gets visitors that could travel anywhere to come to New York
  • Using the “I LOVE NEW YORK” brand to attract visitors beyond New York City and into all of New York state
  • The support the New York tourism industry has received from Governor Andrew Cuomo (including $55 million in 2017)
  • ESD’s experiential marketing team’s I LOVE NEW YORK “traveling pod” that includes interactive digital experiences to help raise awareness for events and attractions all over New York State
  • The impact of ESD’s digital initiatives like the I LOVE NEW YORK app that has been downloaded over 100,000 times since 2015
  • ESD’s social media efforts that have resulted in I LOVE NEW YORK being the #1 most followed state tourism office on Twitter and one of the top state tourism offices on Facebook
  • ESD’s partnership with Beautiful Destinations on Instagram where they’ve created some amazing video content
  • How ESD uses a matching funds program and tourism grants for funding local efforts in the different regions across New York
  • The recent growth of the agritourism industry under New York Governor Andrew Cuomo
  • Leveraging partnerships to attract International travelers
  • The incredible return on investment New York State has seen in the tourism industry (an investment of $170 million became nearly $8 billion!)

Ways to contact Gavin:

Mar 1, 2017

This episode is a little different from most. We will be hearing from a tireless advocate and NYS tourism industry promoter, Mike Linehan. This interview was recorded in October 2016. Mike was gracious in volunteering to be one of Destination on the Left’s first interviews. He was very patient with me and my audio team as we were learning the ropes of podcast production.

Mike and I had a fantastic conversation and he shared many insights from his 30 years in the tourism industry. The audio from our interview however didn’t record properly and most of the interview was unusable. Mike was very kind when I explained what had happened and offered to reschedule so that we could get a good audio file. Unfortunately, our schedules did not align and Mike passed away unexpectedly on February 15, 2017.

Mike’s vision, his tenacity, his insights, his humor are part of the foundation of tourism in New York State. So, I went back to that bad recording and found 20 minutes of our conversation that I want to share with our listeners. We can all continue to learn and benefit from Mike Linehan.

Mike Linehan served as President and Chief Executive Officer of the Yates County Chamber of Commerce for 24 years. Born in Hammondsport, NY, Mike settled in Penn Yan, NY after spending several years in the state of Colorado.

Mike’s formal training included courses of study at St. John Fisher College, Corning Community College, Finger Lakes Community College and the Institutes for Organization Management at the University of Oklahoma, where he was a graduating member of the Class of 1999.

Mike was a member of: the Keuka College Community Associates Board serving as Chair since 2000; NYS Tourism Industry Association where he served as past president; Benevolent and Protective Order of Elks; Loyal Order of Moose; Finger Lakes Regional Tourism Council where he served as Chair; Finger Lakes Wine Country Tourism Marketing Association where he served as Chair and the Chamber Alliance of New York State.

In his spare time, Mike enjoyed cooking, gardening, and boating on the Finger Lakes. He lived in Penn Yan with his wife, Molly, daughters Meaghan and Morgen, and dogs Moses and Maggie.

What you’ll learn about in this episode:

  • The challenge that arose after Penn Yan was flooded in May 2014 and how they overcame the public misperception that Penn Yan was closed after the media focused on the damage of the flood
  • Penn Yan’s efforts to redevelop the waterfront that Mike was beginning to focus on in October when we conducted this interview
  • Why dissenting opinions are so important in achieving the best final product
  • Examples of working within regulations and working to get onerous regulations lifted
  • The importance of visiting your elected officials when they’re home in your district

Tourism websites:

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