Visitor Servicing is changing. Customers are seeking travel inspiration and assistance at all stages of their purchase journey, and Visitor Information Centres need to adapt… fast!
We know that visitor centre staff are major custodians of destination brands, are
typically the call to action for demand driving activities, and most importantly they hold the
keys to the best stories in the region.
We also know that visitor centres are wanting to remain relevant for visitors planning to
come, and those who are already in their destination by influencing their experiences
through personalised stories and helpful tips.
We know there is a huge gap in online servicing and marketing knowledge and ‘know-how’
available to visitor information centre staff at all levels.
And, we know that visitor centres are willing to evolve into active contributors for local visitor economies,
but need the support through education, collaboration and empowerment to do so.
To help support VICs evolve to support our new customers, we’ve developed a brand
new Marketing Bootcamp just for VIC teams, where we share practical marketing knowledge and tactics on how VICs can successfully drive and convert
improving their influence and embedding their relevancy for their local visitor economy.
So if your VIC team is ready to take your Visitor Servicing and
Destination Marketing to the next level, then we’d love to have you
join our Marketing Bootcamp!
You and your team can see the landscape for Visitor Servicing is changing,
but you’re not sure of how your VIC can adapt to remain relevant for your customers.
You have a basic understanding of effective digital marketing + no real understanding of how to service customers online,
and know you need to up-skill yourself to ensure you’re as efficient and effective as you can be with stakeholder resources.
You’re tired of attending conferences and workshops and not getting actionable, practical advice
you can take back to your VIC and apply immediately and confidently.
If any of the above resonates with you, we’d love your team to join us for this professional development opportunity!
We’re Rebecca + Paige, Your Mentors
For those who don’t know us, we are two passionate tourism marketers, who have worked in the Australian Tourism industry for 25+ years combined, in international and destination marketing, and as tourism marketing trainers and facilitators.
Since 2011, we’ve worked as tourism marketing strategists in our own consultancies, and came together in 2012 to establish Tourism eSchool.
We’ve worked with hundreds of tourism businesses, local government, visitor servicing & destination marketing staff during this time to help them through strategy development, product development and online marketing training and implementation.
Why we created this Program…
After working in marketing roles in regional and state capacities, and delivering training programs and mentoring to destination marketers since 2015, we have accumulated an intimate understanding of the key hurdles when it comes to marketing and servicing a destination, including:
- Not all VICs are equal, some VICs are an attraction in their own right, some play a dominant role when it comes to marketing a destination and taking bookings, while others are simply offer a service, and don’t initiate any marketing initiatives.
- Working with relatively challenging budgets + resources, most visitor centres have one or two full-time equivalents, along with a volunteer base with a range of skills to implement marketing.
- Having the ‘bare-minimum’ knowledge of how a VIC can successfully compete in the very cluttered online space and keeping up with the latest in online marketing and what’s working (or not working) in destination marketing.
- Not fully understanding how to measure the Return On Investment of visitor servicing activities, as it relates to overall organisation goals.
- Supporting and motivating tourism operators to help promote the destination through cooperative and individual opportunities.
The Destination Marketing Mentoring Program exceeded all my expectations! Being new to the industry, it has been the most wonderful and engaging learning experience. I feel really lucky to have had the opportunity to work with Rebecca and Paige to further my understanding of the tourism industry and customer behaviour. Paige and Rebecca were fantastic tutors. The information provided in the program helped me to gain perspective, experience and real-world knowledge to implement within my businesses and to improve our outcomes. I would highly recommend Tourism eSchool for those both new to the industry and those who are experienced - you will always learn new things and gain new insights! Thanks very much for your expertise, I look forward to building stronger tourism businesses in the Rutherglen region.
The very first of it’s kind in Australia, this Program is designed to educate, inspire and set a clear path for you and your organisation to push forward
confidently to evolve your organisation’s visitor servicing to help attract and convert more visitors to your region.
For 3 months, we teach & guide your organisation through the destination marketing + visitor servicing maze to ensure you can:
Increase your knowledge and confidence in choosing and implementing
online marketing and visitor servicing tactics specific to the tourism industry and your region
Network and collaborate with other Visitor Servicing staff, where you can establish
and build long-term relationships outside your destination
Starts August 2018.
The Program is facilitated (totally) online over the period of 3 months,
from Tuesday 7 August 2018 to Tuesday 30 October 2018.
Whole of organisation registration
Enrolment is a whole of organisation registration, not a personal registration.
This means you can have as many of your Visitor Servicing Team join the program as you like, to ensure everyone is on board with developing and implementing your new Visitor Servicing plan.
It also gives your organisation flexibility to bring new staff into the training who join the organisation during the program.
1:1 access to 2 Tourism Marketing Professionals
Participants will have access to Paige & Rebecca via our pre and post program catchups,
the Live Training Webinars and in the Mastermind Group for 3 months.
(Total Value = $1,500)
Live Training Webinars
6 x 1 hour live training webinar will be facilitated each alternative fortnight on a Tuesday from 10am – 11am (ACST), which will cover each of the Program Modules outlined below. See the FAQ’s at the bottom of the page for exact dates and times.
Every webinar will be recorded and made available via a secure membership
area on the Tourism eSchool website.
(Total Value = $2,000)
Module Workbooks, Toolkits + Templates
We’ve spent 100+ hours perfecting our bespoke training materials, which have
been designed specifically to help Visitor Servicing teams work
toward developing a comprehensive digital visitor servicing and marketing planning tool.
For each Module, we have crafted a Workbook, which identifies actionable tasks, that together with the webinar,
helps guide your team to implement you new learnings. Each Workbook also features live website links through
to resources shared in the Module, and additional online resources for further professional development.
(Total Value = $2,400)
Marketing + Visitor Servicing Planning Toolkit
Our Marketing + Visitor Servicing Strategy Toolkit is 10+ worksheet Microsoft Excel document, which features
easy to use formula based input fields, in conjunction with planning tables which are fully customisable.
This Toolkit is used to record results and information on the nuts and bolts of planning of a marketing + visitor servicing strategy, and can be used as a strategy document itself, or to inform the
development of a formal strategy document.
(Total Value = $10,000+)
Marketing + Visitor Servicing Review Template
Our Marketing + Visitor Servicing Review Template assists participants to undertake a 360 degree audit of your organisation’s
digital marketing + visitor servicing activities, to ensure you have baseline metrics for the foundation of your planning.
(Total Value = $2,500)
Task Orientated Templates
To delve deeper in the planning of specific marketing tactics, we’ve developed a series of
Task Orientated Templates to assist your team to complete tasks to maximum potential,
which leads to more strategic outcomes for your organisation.
(Total Value = $1,500)
Access to an Exclusive Mastermind Network
To facilitate a life-long learning and opportunity, we’ve set up a private
Facebook group for Visitor Servicing teams to join upon enrolment in the Program.
This space is where participants can ask questions of Paige & Rebecca,
receive help with working through the program tasks and build relationships
with and learn from other participants in the program.
(Total Value = What you make of it!)
The Destination Marketing Mentoring Program webinars enable participation when and where it suits you. You'll be provided with the latest knowledge and valuable tools and templates to take you from zero to hero in no time. These can be adapted to create your own actions and a tailored Digital Marketing Strategy. A very comprehensive, value-for-money program that I strongly recommend to others.
Marketing Modules covered in the Program
Module 1 | VIC Marketing + Visitor Servicing Strategy
- Learn about destination marketing and visitor servicing trends
- Improve your understanding of a destination marketing strategy, and what it takes to attract more visitors to your region using online marketing tactics
- Understand the roles and responsibilities each stakeholder has in your destination in driving demand and servicing visitors
- Learn how to identify your destination’s most profitable customers and their online journey, which will inform the strategies and tactics you choose to deploy to attract more of them and help with their destination information needs
- Undertake a review of all Visitor Collateral developed by your VIC to ensure it is meeting your Ideal Customers needs
Module 2 | Website Marketing + Search Engine Optimisation
- How to optimise your website to convert more website visitors into bookings or enquiries
- Gain knowledge and tools to confidently work with your web development agency to produce a high yielding website, that not only services your customers, but achieves your overall marketing goals
- How to build a Customer-Centric Website – key functional, usability and website design elements to a successful VIC website
- Understand how you can add value to your council and destination websites to ensure the right visitor information is accessible
- Understand the complexities of Search Engine Optimisation in layman’s terms (including how search engines work and major search engine ranking factors)
- How to optimise your web pages and blog posts to rank well in organic search results (where the majority of travellers are seeking information in all stages of their purchase journey)
- Undertake a review of your current website, and set website + SEO objectives
- Learn how to decipher Google Analytics like a pro, mastering all of the relevant KPIs as it relates to monitoring and measuring your website and SEO objectives
- BONUS: Tips and tools to create a website brief and manage the tender process
Module 3 | Content Marketing + Social Media
- Understand the concept of content marketing and storytelling, and how VICs can become great storytellers for their destination
- Understand how you and your team support your local, regional and state tourism organisations by curating and creating stories for your region
- Understand how to use social media channels in your visitor servicing or the alternatives to leverage your destination or local government social media channels
- Learn how to leverage, optimise, improve engagement and report results on your owned social media channels of Facebook, Instagram and Youtube to drive visitor conversions. There will be a big focus on evolving social strategy to adapt to Facebook’s big changes announced January 2018 and the reality of dropping organic reach across all social platforms.
- BONUS: Tips on how to take and record better photos and videos on your smartphones and discover the best websites and apps to take your photos and videos from ‘blah’ to ‘wow’
Module 4 | Blogging + Email Marketing
- How to use blogging to share your stories, and attract new visitors searching for information at all stages of their purchase journey
- Learn about the functional, usability & design features required to set up a blog on your website
- Understand what it takes to create engaging blog content, and the rules and hacks for stress free blog content creation
- Learn how to leverage email marketing to keep your local residents and tourism businesses informed about what’s on around your region
- Discover how to design an email update that people actually want to open, read and engage with it
- Confirm your blogging and email marketing resourcing and objectives to measure return on investment.
Module 5 | Online Visitor Servicing
- Understand the different options to provide visitor information online such as through smartphone apps and digital visitor guides
- Learn how to deliver and optimise location based digital visitor information through Location Based Apps and Online searches, such via Wikipedia, TripAdvisor, Google, Facebook and Instagram GeoLocations.
- Learn how to take you offline visitor servicing online via Facebook Messenger or Live Chat
- Learn what to do (and importantly not to do!) if your VIC or managed visitor assets receive negative feedback online
- Confirm your online visitor servicing objectives and key metrics to measure your return on investment
Module 6 | Regional Experience + Advocacy
- Learn about what makes an exceptional Visitor Information Centre experience from case studies across Australia
- Learn how to effectively promote a local tourism event online, so it is seen and shared widely on social media and can be found in google search results
- Tourism Product Digital Marketing 101 to support you to market your VIC or local government owned/managed tourism assets such as walking tours, art galleries or museums.
- Learn how to encourage customer advocacy for your destination through your VIC, local residents and your owned/managed attractions and events
- Learn how to measure the effectiveness of your overall marketing and visitor servicing activities, to ensure you are achieving key performance indicators for your VIC, and confidently share the results with your stakeholders.
We place a large emphasis on ensuring our participants and their organisations get the most value and best outcomes from the program. Therefore, to ensure maximum engagement and outcomes, each participant in this program will:
Complete a Pre-Program survey and undertake an initial Pre-Program meeting with Rebecca and Paige
to learn a more about your visitor servicing role and your organisation, your local regional tourism marketing set up and your destination’s visitor servicing challenges.
Be offered the opportunity to receive feedback from Paige and Rebecca
on tasks on an ongoing basis throughout the Program
Facilitate a Post-Program meeting with each participant to see
how they are going with implementing their learnings
6 Months after the end of the Program, we will follow up with participants to hear about their achievements and successes,
as it relates to the visitor servicing strategy they created in the Program
We want your organisation to feel completely confident that the time and money they have invested in this Program is well spent.
So, if your organisation feels it hasn’t received fantastic value for money, then we are more than happy to offer them a
a 100% refund within 30 Days of the start of the Program.
On top of our 30 Day Money Back Guarantee, we offer Lifetime Access to the Program content.
So, if your organisation don’t complete the Bootcamp within the allowed 3 months, you don’t need to worry,
as your organisation will be able to access the content for the lifetime of the Program.
So, every time we update the content (when we run the Program over again), your organisation (and any new visitor servicing staff) will have the option to
join in the live webinars, and will also be able to stay an active member of our private Facebook group!
It’s like a gift that keeps on giving!
While this program is new, it’s not the first time we’ve run this visitor servicing training. It’s been a part of our Destination Marketing Mentoring Program over the last four years and you can read some of the testimonials from that program below!
The Destination Marketing Mentoring Program was far beyond anything I expected. Rebecca and Paige were great mentors with a wealth of knowledge. From a Destinations perspective I have gained more experience and real world knowledge to use for years to come, and we have already implemented many of the learnings, especially around Social Media and Blogging. Thank you ladies for passing on your expertise, I look forward to using my knowledge from your course to better market our destination.
The Destination Marketing Mentor Program is a must-do for anyone marketing a destination and looking for practical advice, that can be tailored to your current level of online presence or budget. Paige and Rebecca's passion for marketing is infectious! The Program has confirmed that an increased online presence is the way to speak to our ideal customer, and it has given us the confidence to continue to invest in our Digital Marketing Strategy.
The Destination Marketing Mentoring Program has provided our organisation with the relevant skills and information to confidently navigate the ever changing digital space. Paige and Rebecca do a wonderful job of distilling complex information into relevant, actionable tasks and the online Marketing Toolkit and Strategy document is a valuable resource. Comprehensive, engaging and relevant, I would highly recommend the Program.
Having just completed the Destination Marketing Mentoring Program, I have gained a greater understanding of digital marketing. The course content was exactly what I needed to increase my knowledge on the importance of digital marketing. I am now confident to apply what I have learnt to our marketing strategies so that we are more relevant and offer value in what we do as a regional tourism organisation. The format was easy and engaging with plenty of opportunity to ask questions. Paige and Rebecca definitely know their 'stuff' and Tourism eSchool was a great way learn.
The Destination Marketing Mentoring Program was a great for me as I wanted to learn 'how to do things' in a very practical way, and Paige and Rebecca showed me all the technical and in depth ways how to start/implement/review website and social media strategies. It's also great to receive all the templates and toolkits so we can record and track all the future activities we'll be doing in our regional marketing strategy.
The Program helped build my confidence in the digital space - I don't feel so overwhelmed by 'online' now and can fundamentally see how it all fits together and importantly can work better. I have already been able to allay the fears of some of my operators who have been so overwhelmed by all things digital, and I have been able to help breakdown the 'beast' and assist them to work in the small steps as they develop a relevant digital strategy for them. The mobility of the Program was also a great benefit too, as a Regional Manager, I'm often not in the same place each week, so to be able to 'log-in' where ever I was to participate was ideal.
Whole of Organisation Registration
6 Marketing Modules delivered over 3 months
Access to 2 Tourism Marketing Consultants for 3 months
Live & Recorded Webinars, Custom Toolkits, Workbooks, Templates + Worksheets
Exclusive Mastermind Network
30 Day, 100% Money Back Guarantee
Lifetime Access to Bootcamp Content
Accountability + Support Measures
TOTAL VALUE: $15,000+
If so, we’d absolutely love to have your Visitor Servicing team on board!
Organisation Registration AUD $5,500 + GST
(including unlimited staff, including any new staff that join your VIC or Tourism team over time)
Places are by application only and will be capped at 20 Organisations ONLY, so secure a spot for your team today!
Enrolments are closed for the 2018 intake.
If you would like to join us for our 2019 Intake (starts mid 2019), please let us know below.
Your questions answered!
We’ve put together a list of Frequently Asked Questions about the Program, but if none of these help you then please don’t hesitate to contact us via email, and we will be sure to respond to you as soon as possible!
When are the live webinars running and what happens if I can't attend one live?
All the live webinar dates for the 2018 program are scheduled in advance so you can hopefully free up your schedule for you and or your relevant VIC staff attend. Ideally you are able to attend at least 4 of the 6 webinars live
Webinars will be run at 9am (Perth – AWST), 10.30am (Adelaide – ACST), 11am (East Coast Australia AEST)/ 1pm (New Zealand).
- August 7th, 21st
- September 4th, 18th
- October 16th, 30th
We will record all the live webinars and save them in the Member Portal on our website so you can watch them at a time that suits you if you or your team are unable to make one of them live.
Do I need any prior knowledge to starting the Bootcamp?
No, you don’t need any special knowledge to join the VIC Marketing Bootcamp. You just need to be working in a role that either influences or manages visitor servicing in your destination (VIC Manager, VIC Coordinator, Volunteer or Local Government Tourism Officers) that has the responsibility of providing visitor servicing to visitors in your destination.
Before starting the VIC Marketing Bootcamp, it would be very helpful for you had an understanding of the visitor servicing channels in your region (both on and offline), regional visitor collateral and who manages them. But don’t stress if you don’t have this information, as the program will take you through it anyway.
For those any online visitor servicing channels your VIC manages, you will need access to all of your social networking profiles and a Google Account so you can access relevant Google Products (Google Analytics, Google Search Console, Google My Business, Google Maps) as we will be asking you to reference and make adjustments to these online accounts throughout the Bootcamp where relevant. But again, we will show you how to do this in the Program if you don’t have them set up already.
Do I have any homework?
Yes – but it all goes towards developing a flexible and practical marketing and visitor servicing plan for your destination! When learning something new, the best way to really take on board a new concept is to take some action with it.
Each fortnight you will be issued with a list of tasks to do, which culminate into developing a marketing and visitor servicing strategy for your destination. You are more than welcome to get feedback on your tasks throughout the Program via the private Facebook Group.
We also encourage you to get your destination or visitor servicing colleagues to collaborate to help complete the tasks to help share the load and also brainstorm ideas.
Our budget is tight, we're not sure we can afford the Bootcamp this year?
We understand how budget planning works at a regional marketing and local government which is why we are running the program in August 2018, to allow you time to pay for the program from either your 2017/2018 or 2018/2019 budgets.
Also we are only running this program once in 2018, and may not run it again until 2020, so if you would like to join, we encourage you to lobby your manager to let you join this 2018 round!
The investment to join this program is also very small considering the rate payer dollars local governments invest to keep a physical visitor information centres open. So again, we encourage you to lobby your manager to let you join the program, and help ensure your region’s visitor servicing is helping deliver a real return to your local visitor economy.
If you need us to get on the phone to your manager to help convince them of the program’s merit, don’t hesitate to contact us and we can organise a time!
How does the "Organisation Registration" work when it comes to accessing the training?
One person in your organisation will need to be nominated as the “Lead Person” for the training program. This is the person who we make as the main VIC Bootcamp Contact Person for your organisation. They will be asked to complete the Pre Program Survey, and coordinate what staff need Facebook Group Access and Webinar Registration contacts (including telling us of changes of staff members over time if new ones start or leave).
Membership Website Access: A single organisation log in will be provided, which can be used by the relevant team members to access the Webinar Replays and Learning Resources online.
One on One pre and post program catch ups: This will be undertaking with the Lead Person and any additional staff who would like to come into online meeting.
Webinar Access. Up to 5 single webinar access log in can be provided to your organisation. On the day of a live webinars, a few staff may like to log into a single computer in a quiet area to watch the webinar and ask questions. Any people who can’t make it live can watch the replay which can be accessed via the Membership Website.
Facebook Mentoring Page Access: The Lead Person will need to supply the names of the people who would like to have access to the Facebook group, so they can be invited into the group and then receive mentoring from Paige + Rebecca.
How does "Lifetime Access to the Program" work?
When we run the Program again, this is how you access the program when we run it again.
Organisation Registration – This registration stays with the Organisation, and is not transferrable to staff who leave the organisation. This registration is managed through the “Lead Person” and so if they leave, a new “Lead Person” needs to be nominated from your organisation, so we can keep them updated on when the new round starts and any new staff who have joined the organisation can access the training or join the new round’s live webinars.
Any questions about how this works for you and your organisation, don’t hesitate to contact us.
Why is the Program all Online? I'd prefer my team and I learn via a face to face workshop?
There are 3 reasons why we run our Mentoring Programs online.
- You get a much better results from your training
While a single day’s face-to-face workshop is great for motivation, networking and inspiring you and your team, what we have found in our 6 years of running workshops and training, is that workshop attendees go back to their jobs, gets busy, and don’t really implement any of their learnings, which is a wasted learning opportunity.
Also, human brains can only take in so much information in a single time! Any more than an hour or so of learning something new is about all we can absorb.
So by the end of a day’s face-to-face workshop, especially as we have so much great content to share in our trainings, we find people’s simply can’t take all the learning in!
So by breaking the program learnings down into short, 1-hour live webinars (where you still get to ask question like a face to face workshop!), it’s much better for digesting and applying your new learnings.
Plus you also have a couple of weeks to implement the tasks around the Module and receive mentoring via the Facebook Group before we jump into new learning in the next webinar!
2. Saves you time
Regardless of where you are located, be it a region, outback or city, so long as you have decent internet speed, you can join the Program.
You also don’t have to waste you or your team’s time away from the VIC or Office to attend a face-to-face workshop. You just have to log into your own computer! Easy! And if you can’t attend a workshop live, you can just watch the replay at a time that suits you.
3. Saves you money
The cost for us to deliver a stand alone, face-to-face workshop, just for your region, would be at a much higher price, as we have to take into account our own travel costs to/from your region.
Therefore when you join our VIC Marketing Bootcamp, you get the experience of working with two experience Tourism Marketing Consultants for your region’s visitor servicing strategy, but at a greatly reduced investment than our stand alone consulting rate!
However, we get that you may still really would prefer us to deliver a live workshop training in person in your region. So we do offer tailored, face-to-face Regional Mentoring Programs or run stand alone workshops, so do let us know if we can help you with a quote for this type of training.
Who facilitates the Program?
Rebecca White and Paige Rowett co-faciliate the Mentoring Program, and they will both be on hand via email, phone and the private forum to help support you with all the help you need throughout the lifetime of the Mentoring Program.
Together they have 24 + years of marketing experience and 15+ years specifically in tourism marketing. Learn more about Rebecca & Paige >
What technical requirements do I need to participate in the Program?
We facilitate our live webinars (approximately 1-1.5 hours in length) using GoToWebinar, a popular web conferencing service. In addition to the live webinars, participants will also be required to watch recorded webinars (up to an hour in length) in our website’s member portal, and download PDF, Excel and Word Documents for each module.
So, in order to participate effectively in this program, participants will need:
- Access to a laptop or desktop computer with reasonable fast internet speed
- Relatively high data limit (If you are unsure about whether or not your data plan is suitable, feel free to contact us and we will work through it with you)
- The device will need to have a microphone so you are able to interact during the live webinars.
How many hours per week should I set aside to do the Program?
We recommend you put aside 2 – 3 hours a week to ensure you don’t lose momentum with the Program. This time includes attending the live webinars (or watching the replays), reading the workbooks, carry out the module’s tasks and interacting on the private forum. We also schedule breaks during the webinar series to allow you to catch up on tasks.
What is your refund policy?
We want you to feel completely confident that your time and money will be well spent. If you feel you haven’t received value for money from our training we offer a 30 day, 100% refund of our Mentoring Program fee.