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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: November, 2019
Nov 20, 2019

Ben conceives and carries out the strategic direction for the overall brand positioning, messaging and marketing platforms. Ben is the brainchild of Catch Des Moines’ new the “S’s are Silent” brand campaign.

In this episode of Destination on the Left, I am joined by Ben Handfelt, Director of Creative and Communications at Catch Des Moines. We discuss the tactics and strategies Ben and his team are using to increase tourism in the Greater Des Moines area.

What You Will Learn in This Episode:

  • Ben’s background in marketing and PR
  • How Ben leveraged his experience as a transplant to create a new marketing strategy for Des Moines
  • How Ben differentiates Iowa from other destinations
  • The importance of intentional video content
  • Proper use of humor in a destination marketing campaign
  • The S’s are Silent campaign and what inspired it
  • The effects of tourism on the community as a whole

Destination Iowa

Tourism is more than a collection of intermittent events that draw weekend traffic—it impacts the quality of life for every resident in the area. It is the reason why Catch Des Moines brought Ben Handfelt onto the team. Ben spearheads the destination marketing efforts in Des Moines, IA, combining a background in entertainment and corporate PR with a passion for powerful creative.

Living Amongst Your Target Audience

Ben was a Chicago transplant for twelve years. He knows exactly what is going through the minds of jaded city dwellers when they hear the name ‘Des Moines.’ But as an Iowa native, he also knows what brought him back in spite of everything Chicago has to offer. That was the feeling Ben strove to capture as he built new campaigns and reshaped their brand voice. The Greater Des Moines area has seen significant results from the efforts of Ben and his team.

S’s are Silent

In any city, quality of life directly correlates to the attraction and retention of talent. So, Ben and his team are playing the long game. They created a significant amount of humorous video content and developed Catch Des Moines' new the "S's are Silent" brand campaign in an effort to draw more visitors. The campaign has an oddly specific hook, but there has been an immense payoff in leisure travel, sales, and new residents. Ben and his team are the voice of destination Iowa and they have only begun to scratch the surface.

Episode Transcript

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Nov 13, 2019

Darienne Mobley is a personal coach, professional development trainer, motivational speaker and team building facilitator who brings a world of experience and wealth of wisdom to her clients. As an industry trailblazer, Darienne works with individuals, helping them embrace life and leadership. She also partners with organizations, leading them to greater long-term success by developing effective and dynamic teams, and giving them the tools to create a clear and impactful vision.

As a passionate public speaker, Darienne is a true storyteller who connects with her audience by sharing authentic experiences and real-life solutions. Her presentations inspire, entertain, educate and elevate groups to new heights. Darienne offers keynotes, one-on-one coaching, workshops, group coaching, online programs and more.

Over the past decade, Darienne has successfully collaborated with more than 100 organizations from around the country. She began her career in the tourism industry and has held the distinct honor of serving as the Director of Tourism for both Mississippi and Louisiana. Darienne taps into her specialized knowledge and vast experience to offer thoughtful guidance and leadership to current and future leaders in tourism and hospitality, as well as other industries.

In this episode of Destination on the Left, I am joined by Darienne Mobley, Founder, and President of Darienne Inc. We discuss the journey of personal development through coaching and mentorship, and why it leads to sustainable happiness.

What You Will Learn in This Episode:

  • Darienne’s journey into coaching and professional speaking in the travel and tourism industry
  • Darienne’s personal experience with mentorship and coaching
  • What it means to achieve a “sense of flow,” and how to get there
  • How you know it is time to leave your job
  • The four pillars of Darienne’s process: clarity, intuition, priority, and truth
  • Why you need to prioritize personal rocks like health and spirituality
  • Leadership strategies for expanding roles in the travel and tourism industry
  • What you should be thinking about as you look for a personal development coach
  • How to use the Living Inside Out Virtual Program to start your own personal development journey at your own pace

Where You Want to Be

Darienne Mobley served as the Director of Tourism for both Mississippi and Louisiana, but her time in Louisiana was life-changing. There, Darienne held her position from 2004-2006, which means she was the Director of Tourism during Hurricane Katrina. There is no book on how to approach that scenario and the experience changed Darienne’s perspective on her career. At that time, she realized that she wasn’t interested in politics, finances, or budgets. Marketing was the place she wanted to be.


Darienne’s affinity for marketing and personal development led to the creation of her business, which enabled her to stay passionately involved with the tourism industry in a different capacity. She did a lot of tourism consulting in the beginning and eventually managed the Louisiana Travel Promotion Association on contract for ten years. That experience resulted in the final evolution of her business–coaching, professional development, and motivational speaking was her new focus.

The Effects of Coaching and Mentorship

Darienne hired a coach and experienced the impact first-hand. Her coach asked a lot of difficult questions that she could not answer. It helped her realize that she was not putting herself first, a trap that many of us fall into as women leaders and entrepreneurs. Darienne was pushed to pursue her untapped potential in public speaking and instantly built momentum. She got to do what she was best at in an industry she loved. Darienne was already getting clients before her year-long personal development program was over, and she finally found a sense of flow. Darienne made that transition late in her career, but there is no deadline; there is no substitute for the feeling that you are doing what you’re supposed to be doing.

Getting it Done With Grace and Ease

The theme of her program is “getting it all done with grace and ease. Most of us can handle getting it all done, but we often fail to do it with kindness, compassion, and peace of mind. Grace and ease represent the “flow” part, and it is important for you to realize that life shouldn’t always be hard. If you are doing what you love with grace and ease, even the difficult parts of your day will seem easier because you are approaching them with a different frame of mind.


The travel and tourism industry is Darienne’s sweet spot because that is what she knows best. She helps her clients determine if they are in the best place, and if not, how they can expand to do more of what they enjoy. Her process is built around 4 main pillars: clarity, intuition, priority, and truth. Those pillars are measured against your personal rocks to help you achieve sustainable happiness and success. When you are clear about what’s important to you and what your values are, you carry yourself differently. Coaching and mentorship is the best way to identify them.

Resources:

Nov 6, 2019

With a talent for creating special events that blossomed while working for my dad’s car stereo shop, I got my start in marketing at Frontier Field in Rochester and I began serving as the executive director of the internationally known Lilac Festival. Later on, I headed the Canandaigua, New York Business Improvement District while also performing projects for the tourism promotion agency Visit Rochester.

In 2009, I founded Break the Ice Media, with more than 20 years of experience in tourism marketing. I now host “Destination on the Left”, a highly successful tourism marketing podcast.

As a business owner, I know what it takes to be successful. I founded BTI to help businesses tell their brand story through public relations, digital and traditional channels. I have the ability to uncover unique marketing opportunities and develop marketing and public relations initiatives that help clients build long-term success.

In this solocast episode of Destination on the Left, I wanted to take the opportunity to share my gratitude with you. I discuss the insights I’ve gathered over the course of ten years in business and give you a look into a new project we are working on for Destination on the Left.

What You Will Learn in This Episode:

  • How to help us hit our goal of 100 reviews
  • What I am grateful for right now
  • The celebrations and events surrounding my company’s ten-year anniversary
  • My experience receiving the Small Business Person of the Year Award from the Small Business Council in Rochester, NY.
  • The insights I’ve gathered over the course of ten years in business
  • A sneak peek at a new project we’re working on for Destination on the Left
  • What it means to employ cathedral thinking

Ten Years Worth of Gratitude

As Thanksgiving and the rest of the holiday season approaches, I thought it would be appropriate to make ‘gratitude’ the theme of this week’s solocast. It is especially timely for me since my company, Break the Ice Media, celebrated its ten-year anniversary last month and I was honored with receiving the Small Business Person of the Year Award from the Small Business Council in Rochester, NY! With this episode, I want to share my gratitude with you.

Celebrate Every Milestone

I am grateful for you, our listeners, as we round off the podcast’s third year with overwhelming support. For our anniversary, we wanted to put together something that celebrates our team, clients, and everyone else who has been an important part of our journey. But with most of those people spread out across the continent, we had to plan something different for each group. I hope this will give you some new ideas and inspire you to do something special for your next big celebration!

Our process started by selecting an anniversary planning committee. It should come as no surprise that most of the ideas for our team celebration revolved around food and wine. But we wanted to get everyone involved. Our internal survey revealed that all of our team members wanted to do something unique and special. After some research, we booked the chef’s table at Good Luck in the Village Gate Square neighborhood of Rochester! With that settled, we moved on to brainstorming a client celebration.

A Toast to Our Clients

It didn’t take long for the light bulb to go off and we decided to hold a virtual toast for our scattered clients on October 14th (our birthday). To incentivize them a little bit, we shipped out fifty-six bottles of sparkling wine with custom labels to make the virtual event more sentimental and immersive. I am grateful for everyone that was involved and our team members who made it possible.

The Small Business Person of the Year Award was another momentous occasion. But when I was nominated for this award, I was hesitant to actually submit my application. The nomination came at a very busy time and our team was overextended. My leadership team pushed me to commit and I wouldn’t have done it without them. I made the top five of fifty finalists and it was a great honor to be recognized alongside nine other Rochester community business leaders.

Cathedral Thinking

As I prepared for the launch event, I drew inspiration from this podcast and reflected on all of the moments that molded me into a leader. The experience is best described by the concept of cathedral thinking, a mindset derived from manual laborers who began construction projects knowing they would not be completed in their lifetime. We are all cathedral thinkers, building our businesses for future generations, making impacts with our time to build better communities, supporting our families, and laying the foundation for our children and grandchildren for the next generation. I challenge all of us to keep having those big visions that will have far-reaching impact and to work towards that vision today, even if we do so.

Resources:

Episode Transcript

We value your thoughts and feedback and would love to hear from you. Leave us a review on your favorite streaming platform to let us know what you want to hear more of. Here is a quick tutorial on how to leave us a rating and review on iTunes!: https://breaktheicemedia.com/rating-review/

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