by Lisa A. Grimaldi | July 30, 2014
Destination Marketing Association International has released the first part of DestinationNEXT, a two-part research series on the future of destination marketing organizations. The first phase revealed the 20 top trends affecting DMOs, based on a survey of 327 DMOs from 36 countries. The list of trends includes the use of social media in reaching the travel market, and mobile platforms and apps becoming the primary engagement platform for travelers; followed by customers seeking personalized travel experiences; smart technology (e.g., phones, bag tags, cards); and, for meetings and conventions, destination branding. "It is imperative that DMOs and the industry not take anything for granted as we prepare to ensure we have community-embraced tourism in our destinations," DestinationNEXT Advisory Group Co-Chairs Scott Beck, president and CEO of Visit Salt Lake, and Tammy Blount, president and CEO of California's Monterey County Convention & Visitors Bureau, said in a letter to readers of the DestinationNEXT report. "This is where today's DMOs find themselves -- destination leaders charged with collaboratively activating a community vision for tourism in a high-stakes, hyper-competitive global marketplace, with an incredible pace of change. DMAI's DestinationNEXT initiative is designed to respond and make a difference for DMOs everywhere." Part two of DestinationNext will be released next summer; part one of the DestinationNEXT series is available for download here.