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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: December, 2020
Dec 16, 2020

Twenty years ago, Pascale Bernasse fulfilled a lifelong dream and began a career in the travel industry. Today, that dream remains a reality for her as the co-owner and President of French Wine Explorers.

Bernasse started working in the travel industry in 2000 after leaving a corporate career that had left her uninspired. Taking a leap of faith, she started her career at two of the first internet-based cruise retailers, then moved on to gain experience with a small niche tour operator and a brick and mortar travel agency. In 2007 Bernasse and her husband, Pierre, acquired French Wine Explorers, a boutique tour operator specializing in luxury wine vacations in France and Italy.

For the past nine years, Bernasse has been featured as a Condé Nast “Top Travel Specialist” for her expertise. Bernasse earned this reputation by providing exceptional immersive tours with memorable experiences. Her success is due to her insider’s knowledge and relationships with the top estates and guides in France. Daughter of a French native, Bernasse spent summers in France and received part of her college education and professional experience there. All this time spent in France has allowed her to have a deep perspective that she shares with clients.

Says Bernasse, “I am incredibly proud of my experiences in the travel business these last 20 years. This has been a dream of mine since I was a young child spending my summers in France. Over the years, I have forged relationships with outstanding clients and service providers. These partnerships have allowed me to grow in ways that I never imagined. We use a high-touch approach with our clients; and this fuels our brand as Pierre and I surround ourselves with the best in the business. I hope the next 20 years will challenge, reward, and inspire me as much as the past 20 have been!”

Along with recognition from Condé Nast, French Wine Explorers has been recognized by Wine Enthusiast, Travel and Leisure, Rachel Ray Magazine, Travel Weekly, and Bon Appétit magazines.

Destination on the Left is joined by Pascale Bernasse, the president of French Wine Explorers. In our conversation, Pascale and I talk about the importance of finding your tribe and maintaining focus so you can navigate the challenges of this pandemic. She explains how her company found its North Star and managed to stay healthy through all of the hurdles in 2020. And she also discusses her commitment to serving the community and putting her customers first. Our podcast is full of invaluable insights about French Wine Explorers’ ability to persevere in these trying times, and I am sure it will energize you as it did me.

What You Will Learn:

  • How Pascale found her way into the travel and tourism industry 20 years ago
  • Pascale’s role as co-owner and president of French Wine Explorers
  • The importance of finding your tribe amidst a global crisis
  • How to maintain focus so you can navigate the challenges of the pandemic more effectively
  • What French Wine Explorers did to stay healthy through all of the hurdles of 2020
  • How Pascale’s commitment to service and putting her customers first paid off during the pandemic

French Wine Explorers

Destination on the Left is joined by Pascale Bernasse, the president of French Wine Explorers. In our conversation, Pascale and I talk about the importance of finding your tribe and maintaining focus so you can navigate the challenges of this pandemic. She explains how her company found its North Star and managed to stay healthy through all of the hurdles in 2020. And she also discusses her commitment to serving the community and putting her customers first. Our podcast is full of invaluable insights about French Wine Explorers’ ability to persevere in these trying times, and I am sure it will energize you as it did me.

Serving, Not Selling

French Wine Explorers offers wine tours in France, Italy, and Spain to help wine lovers become true connoisseurs. Her customers are not comfortable sitting on a beach for a week—they are looking to come back with more knowledge than they started with by participating in enriching experiences abroad. On the surface, French Wine Explorers is a tour company, but Pascale figured out how to take it so much further than that. By focusing on relationship development and the individual needs of each client, each experience has a personal touch that her competitors can’t offer. French Wine Explorers doesn’t sell, it serves. And the new circumstances of the pandemic have only made that more significant.

Responding to the Global Pandemic

It goes without saying that the events of 2020 have been challenging for everyone, but the travel and tourism industry has been hit especially hard. It has forced us to adapt and serve our clients in new ways. In the first half of the year, Pascale and her team focused solely on protecting the investments of clients who had booked tours in 2020. The second half of the year has been dedicated to finding ways to run the business more efficiently based on Pascale’s vision for the future. France experienced a number of terror attacks in 2016 which cut French Wine Explorers’ business in half. Moving forward, Pascale and her team focused on building financial insulation for anything else that might happen in the future. That insulation has been key in their ability to pivot and push forward in these difficult times.

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/

 
Dec 9, 2020

As a tourism professional for over 25 years, David Holder co-founded Clarity of Place with a hands-on understanding of what destination leaders need to be successful. David leads stakeholder engagement efforts and crafts tactical plans to ensure destinations are equipped with the data and industry insights to react to changing environments but still attain their strategic vision.

In leading a variety of destinations, David proved himself to be an industry innovator, taking new perspectives on what it means for destinations to be competitive and specializing in setting and meeting measurable marketing, sales, and product development results.

A versatile and effective communicator, David honed his destination management skills by collaborating with industry partners through service on the board of directors for Destinations International, the Destination Marketing Accreditation Program, and the US Travel Association Destinations Council, to name a few.

Destination on the Left is joined by David Holder, the co-founder of Clarity of Place. David’s organization helps destinations navigate threats and opportunities that impact their ability to attract visitors and attain their long-term strategic goals. He has over twenty-five years of experience in the travel and tourism industry, and he has mastered the art of tactical planning, data analysis, and collaboration to ensure destinations can thrive in changing environments. On our podcast, David explains how DMOs should communicate with their communities. He also shares why aligning your priorities with the priorities of the community will set you up for success.

What You Will Learn:

  • David’s journey into travel and tourism
  • How DMOs can better communicate with their communities
  • Why aligning your priorities with the priorities of the community will set you up for success
  • The difference between the ‘why’ of what you do vs. the ‘what’ or the ‘how’
  • How to leverage transformational metrics for tactical planning
  • What DMOs can do to form stronger connections with economic development
  • How the pandemic has impacted destination marketing

Clarity of Place

Destination on the Left is joined by David Holder, the co-founder of Clarity of Place. David’s organization helps destinations navigate threats and opportunities that impact their ability to attract visitors and attain their long-term strategic goals. He has over twenty-five years of experience in the travel and tourism industry, and he has mastered the art of tactical planning, data analysis, and collaboration to ensure destinations can thrive in changing environments. On our podcast, David explains how DMOs should communicate with their communities. He also shares why aligning your priorities with the priorities of the community will set you up for success.

Get Buy-in From Your Community

David offers a unique perspective when it comes to the different ways destinations can leverage data. He believes there is a dire need for destinations to communicate more effectively across their communities because there is a disconnect between the priorities of DMOs and the priorities of the communities. Clarity of place has made it their focus to find connections between DMOs and communities, so they can help everyone understand the big picture effect of their programs and why they do what they do. If you can get buy-in from the community, your destination will have much greater success.

Responding to the Global Pandemic

When David and his team at Clarity of Place first started looking for these connections, they explored many of the different programs destinations created in response to the global pandemic. They found that the hyper-local outreach and progressive content strategy we have seen are only going to continue in these destinations after the pandemic subsides. The pandemic has changed the needs of the community and the individual, and it has put everything DMOs do into a different context. By understanding the data that drives the new trends, marketing organizations can use them to guide their strategies moving forward.

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/

Dec 2, 2020

With transformation and culture change in her DNA, Judy McKinney-Cherry is a seasoned leader and successful entrepreneur recognized for her expertise in economic and community development. She is sought after and known for her ability to balance a strategic focus with boots on the ground pragmatism that she leverages to help emerging businesses forge growth trajectories and create sustainable and successful futures. Ms. Cherry is currently the Executive Director for SCOPED, the Schuyler County Partnership for Economic Development, and the CEO/CFO for the Schuyler County Industrial Development Agency.

Ms. McKinney Cherrys diverse background includes over 25 years of executive experience across the private sector, public sector, and university settings including appointments by the Governors of New York and Delaware. Her service on numerous local, regional, and national Boards includes Corning Community College Regional Board of Trustees, CCS Workforce Investment & Opportunity Board, the Southern Tier Central Planning Council, Locate Finger Lakes!, Erie Canal Heritage Fund, Watkins Glen Area Chamber of Commerce, Regional Energy and Economic Development Corporation, to name a few.

As a certified economic developer with fellow member status, she also serves on the International Economic Development Council Accreditation Committee. When she manages to pull herself away from doing the work she loves and for which she has an unwavering commitment, you can find her riding her BMW motorcycle, beekeeping, working with raptors, and spending time on the golf course. She currently resides in Watkins Glen with her husband, Phil, her corgi, Winston, and their chickens, Emily, Lucy, and Ethyl.

Destination on the Left is joined by Judy McKinney Cherry, a seasoned economic and community development professional with a wealth of experience in the travel and tourism sector. She currently serves as the Executive Director of the Schuyler County Partnership for Economic Development, as well as the CEO, CFO of the Schuyler County Industrial Development Agency. Judy has a deep understanding of the role travel and tourism plays as an economic driver in destinations across the country. On our podcast, she joins us to share her story, highlighting the importance of housing in economic performance, and mapping out her collaborative framework as it relates to our 3C’s.

What You Will Learn:

  • Travel and tourism’s role as an economic driver in communities across the country
  • Why housing is critical to the performance of any economy
  • Judy’s experience with collaboration, and how it ties into our 3C’s framework
  • How Judy’s public/private sector perspectives and experience with data influence her decisions
  • Why we need to approach tourism as so much more than promoting/marketing a destination
  • What Judy has done to help her organization stand out from the pack
  • How Judy’s team has used creativity and collaboration to navigate crises
  • How the pandemic has leveled the playing field in travel and tourism

Tourism is Part of the Economic Fabric

Judy McKinney Cherry is a seasoned economic and community development professional with a wealth of experience in the travel and tourism sector. She currently serves as the Executive Director of the Schuyler County Partnership for Economic Development, as well as the CEO, CFO of the Schuyler County Industrial Development Agency. Judy has a deep understanding of the role travel and tourism plays as an economic driver in destinations across the country. On our podcast, Judy joins us to share her story, highlighting the importance of housing in economic performance, and mapping out her collaborative framework as it relates to our 3C’s.

More Than Marketing

Judy is extremely data-driven in her approach to strategy, and she views tourism as an economic driver. It is part of the economic fabric of every community, which is why tourism boards and organizations are so much more than marketers alone. If you look at tourism as an entire industry instead of a means of promoting your destination, then you will be able to thrive collectively. Tourism is not a subsect of economic development, it is part of it. And it is a way for communities to engage travelers in ongoing relationships that lead to potential opportunities for growth.

Planning for What-If Scenarios

In travel and tourism, Judy is always planning for the what-if scenarios. COVID is a good example because the entire industry transformed overnight. When destination marketers are only focused on promoting a destination, there is virtually nothing for them to do in a situation like this. But when they operate as an integral part of a destination’s economic development, they can help fill in the gaps wherever it is necessary. The essence of creativity is problem-solving. When you combine that with collaboration and a willing network of organizations that have a location’s best interest in mind, disaster scenarios are easier to manage.

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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