Quick Chat with Casey Cote

by Allen J. Sheinman | January 01, 2014

CEO, Omnience, formerly Meeting Consultants, an Atlanta-based event management and marketing firm

What are the most common mistakes made by organizations marketing their event?
They rely too much on digital marketing tools, which make it too easy to be impersonal. Instead of just screening email lists, they should be calling prospective attendees and sending them agenda highlights with personal notes. Also, organizations too often let their own goals and products drive pre-event promotions instead of making attendees' interests paramount.



Patrick Andersen has been appointed president, Americas, of Minneapolis-based Carlson Wagonlit Travel. For the past two years he has served as CWT's executive vice president for the U.K. and Ireland, Nordic and Eastern Europe. A U.S.-born Danish citizen, Andersen previously worked for the Deutsche Post Worldwide Network and DHL.

Steve Shern has been named general manager of the 247-room Thompson Chicago, which opened last October in the city's Gold Coast neighborhood. He previously served as general manager of the 356-room Hotel 71 in downtown Chicago.

At the Providence Warwick (R.I.) Convention & Visitors Bureau, Christopher Brislin has been hired as director of national accounts, responsible for the Northeast region and Pacific states.

The Snohomish County (Wash.) Tourism Bureau has hired Samantha Shaw, CMP, as group sales manager, in charge of promoting the county's convention facilities to meeting and event planners.

Shannah Milstead has been appointed executive director, sales programs, for Toronto-based Fairmont Raffles Hotels International. She will be responsible for FRHI's worldwide sales strategy, with a key focus on incentive programs.

At the 230-room Westing Riverfront Beaver Creek (Colo.), Jeffery Burrell has been named general manager. The resort has more than 7,500 square feet of banquet and meeting space.

Destination College Park, Georgia, the city's destination marketing organization, has hired Cookie Smoak as president. Smoak previously served as director of convention services for the Atlanta Convention and Visitors Bureau.

The 649-room Fairmont Scottsdale (Ariz.) Princess has named Chris Budd director of sales. The hotel has more than 150,000 square feet of event space.

Starwood Hotels & Resorts has appointed Dawn Parisi as director of sales and marketing for the 174-room Westin St. John Resort and Villas in the U.S. Virgin Islands. She also will serve as area director of sales and marketing, overseeing efforts at six other Starwood properties in the Caribbean.

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