Posts Tagged ‘blog’

10 Best Travel Writing Books of All Time

Saturday, March 31st, 2012


We recently published an article that you may be interested in entitled, “10 Best Travel Writing Books of All Time” (

After having followed your blog for a while, I feel that this one article would align well with your blog’s subject matter. I thought perhaps you’d be interested in sharing this article with your readers? Thanks, and keep up the great blogging!

Helen Olson

“10 Best Travel Writing Books of All Time”

Monday, January 30th, 2012


We recently published an article that you may be interested in entitled, “10 Best Travel Writing Books of All Time” (

After having followed your blog for a while, I feel that this one article would align well with your blog’s subject matter. I thought perhaps you’d be interested in sharing this article with your readers? Thanks, and keep up the great blogging!

Helen Olson

Golf Nebraska Campaign in Full Swing

Thursday, July 14th, 2011

Golf Nebraska Campaign in Full Swing


LINCOLN, NEB. (July 12, 2011) — Nebraskans know their state is home to great golf courses. The Golf Nebraska campaign is taking that message beyond the state’s boundaries to attract more golfers from around the region to play — and stay — in Nebraska. It’s a project of the Nebraska Department of Economic Development’s Travel and Tourism Division.


“Nebraska is among Golf Digest’s top 10 golf states,” said Christian Hornbaker, director of the Travel and Tourism Division. “And golf is already a $260 million business in Nebraska. We want to grow that part of our state’s economy by attracting more visitors to play our outstanding and affordable public and semiprivate courses.”


Television commercials and website advertising are targeting golfers in surrounding states, encouraging them to “Get Driving” to Nebraska for a golf vacation. The campaign also includes emails sent to golfers throughout the region and an expanded Web page at A mobile Web page includes a list of courses and possible trip itineraries at


Social media sites also offer golfers new ways to learn about Nebraska golf courses and engage other golfers. provides course reviews through the eyes of avid golfers who share their impressions of the courses they play and the people they meet. Blog postings with photos and videos will be added throughout the summer.


The GolfNebraska Facebook page is a place to connect with golfers who play Nebraska courses or want to travel to Nebraska for a golf getaway. Visitors will find news, photos and videos about Nebraska golf at Anyone who plays Nebraska courses or is considering a golf trip to the state is welcome to share their thoughts, experiences and questions about golf in Nebraska.


Nebraska has more than 200 public and semiprivate golf courses. Several have been recognized by national golf publications for their design, scenery and value.

Top 20 Summer Destinations for B&B Travelers

Monday, April 18th, 2011

Recent PR & Marketing Efforts issued a news release on April 11 announcing its Top 20 Summer Destinations for B&B Travelers, which was picked up by nearly 250 media outlets.  You can view the release here:

Help us promote B&Bs by sharing this link on Facebook, Twitter and your email newsletters. Blog: If you have any great high-quality photos, deals, or recipes to share, email them to Emily Gerson for consideration. You should also email her if you’re interested in participating in an innkeeper Q&A feature on the blog.

Change photos often; add video too: We know we say it over and over, but we repeat our photo mantra each month because it is such an important part of promoting our members. Media are always on the lookout for timely photos. Photos from your listing pages are often linked to releases posted in the Press Room, also visited by media worldwide. Most importantly, timely photos on your page motivate consumers to book. Now that winter is almost here, replace the summer photos with visions of winter. Update video footage to reflect the season; don’t be afraid to add photos with people enjoying your inn!

Not sure how to post photos? Click here to log in to your Home Base on, click Photos under Free Member Benefits, then upload photos following the easy instructions. Don’t forget! If you have high-resolution photos or videos, please post them on When the media wants high-res photos and videos, we look for them on, so be sure to post yours soon.

A Note from Mary White

Wednesday, March 30th, 2011

A Note from Mary White

Hotels have B&Bs beat when it comes to taking advantage of Internet marketing … or do they? True, they have infringed on our territory – brands from the Four Seasons to Hampton Inns are offering complimentary breakfast and an abundance of amenities, hallmark features of a bed & breakfast getaway – however, I believe there is still plenty of room to compete.

When I started BnBFinder in 1998 the Internet was about to become the great equalizer, the chance for B&Bs to be on a level playing field with hotels because of a cost effective advertising vehicle (a website) to get the word out about our properties. Our industry has changed a great deal because of the Internet and the benefits have not come to an end.

Our agility and individuality are some of the advantages that we should seize. As a small business owner you can make a decision right now and implement it immediately, you’ll never be held up by corporate bureaucracy. You can provide a truly personal experience for your guest, something even a 5 star hotel will have trouble rivaling. You frequently know ahead of time, or are the first to know, when couples become engaged and can add an extra touch such as champagne at breakfast or a mug from your inn as a remembrance of their engagement. You also have the advantage of deciding on the spot what to do, based on guests’ personalities, making the gesture more meaningful than a canned, corporate response. Beyond the special touches, guests would have to stay at a very high-end hotel to experience the type of concierge service offered at most B&Bs. Innkeepers are in the know about the best spots, restaurants, and local secrets.

As a result of your agility and individuality, I believe your “Internet message” should always convey the value and experience that your B&B offers. Your advertising should start with the premise that your B&B is more than just a place to sleep; that to stay at a B&B is to wakeup someplace special; that B&Bs are a better way to stay. This means something different for every inn, so how do you use the Internet to convey this?

Good photos are essential. We had wonderful feedback on Melissa Giannelli’s article on photos of your inn in last month’s newsletter. Does your marketing (website, blog, newsletter, directory listings, etc) show your breakfast, amenities, and area activities? Keep it simple and appealing and when it applies, flaunt it!

Video tells your story and conveys the experience far better than words. No longer do you have to be able to shoot and edit video clips or hire a high priced videographer to have great video for your website. Programs, such as Photo Story 3, make it easy to assemble photographs into high quality, engaging video. I created the video below in less than an hour after one webinar taught by Acorn Internet. (If you’re not an Acorn customer you can sign up for their webinar series by contacting The video class was originally offered as a “test” beta-class, and will be worked into the class schedule later this year.)

Don’t forget Social Media. At a recent HSMAI (Hospitality Sales and Marketing Association International) panel discussion, revenue managers were asked how to judge the return on investment (ROI) of their social media efforts. I listened closely for this answer, as this is a question I am frequently asked by innkeepers. Interestingly, many chain hotels have not embraced social media as a format for engaging guests. It’s not that they don’t want to, but because of the priority of other corporate tech projects or because of the personal message necessary to engage in social media, they are unable to approach this medium with the agility that countless B&Bs have.

As an Innkeeper you can always be thinking about what makes your inn special and how to convey that in whatever form of Internet marketing you use. It’s a privilege and a pleasure to promote your inn and as always I value your feedback.

P.S.: I will be at the Northwest Innkeeping Trade Show & Conference April 4-6, in Portland Oregon. If you’re at the conference, make sure you stop by the booth and say hello!

Wednesday, February 16th, 2011

Dear Fellow Traveler,

There are many exciting things afoot to report here at Sustainable Travel International this month.

First off, after several years of effort and painstaking research, we’ve launched, an important new tool that connects conscientious travelers with the world’s most responsible travel providers. Scroll down to learn more about it.

We’ve just launched our Responsible Travel Report Blog, which features regular postings from some of the leading voices in the sustainable tourism movement. You can check out some recent highlights below.

We are also thrilled to welcome 26 travel providers from across the globe to our new Partner Program, which provides participating organizations with an exclusive suite of sustainability and marketing tools to help them operate more sustainably and promote themselves to our ever growing audience of responsible travelers. If you are a travel provider interested in operating more sustainability and reaching new travelers we encourage you to join today.

Finally, today is the last day to win a luxury safari for two to Botswana or a four night ski vacation at Jackson’s incredible Bentwood Inn in our Great Green Travel Giveaway fundraiser. Make a $10 tax deductible donation online by clicking here and you’ll be entered to win!

We hope you enjoy this month’s newsletter and we wish you a happy and prosperous 2011.

Safe travels,

Matt Kareus
Director of Marketing

2010 Nebraska Travel Industry Award Winners Announced

Tuesday, October 19th, 2010

2010 Nebraska Travel Industry Award Winners Announced

LINCOLN, NEB. (Oct. 14, 2010)—More than 150 tourism professionals were on hand to honor their peers at the annual travel awards banquet Thursday evening at The Cornhusker, A Mariott Hotel, in Lincoln. The event capped the 35th Annual Nebraska Travel and Tourism Conference organized by the Nebraska Department of Economic Development’s Travel and Tourism Division and hosted by the Lincoln Convention and Visitors Bureau.

Lieutenant Gov. Rick Sheehy announced the following 2010 Nebraska Travel Industry award winners.

The 2010 Henry Fonda Award – the state’s highest tourism award representing leadership, vision and dedication to the tourism industry – went to Chard Hirsch of Broken Bow, who has been an avid spokesperson and supporter for her community, county and the Sandhills Region for most of her life. Through the year’s she’s won Outstanding Elementary Teacher of the Year, Elks Outstanding Citizen of the Year, Junior Chamber of Commerce Boss of the Year, Outstanding Nebraska Retailer, Chamber of Commerce Citizen of the Year, and the KOLN/KGIN “People You Can Count On” Award.

For the past six years, Hirsch has been active in promoting and developing tourism along the Sandhills Journey Scenic Byway. She was active in bringing the scenic byway interpretive center to Broken Bow and regularly volunteers her time there to share the byway’s history with visitors.

The Friend of Tourism Award went to the Nebraska Humanities Council. The council showcased Omaha’s artistic and cultural sides by hosting the Federation of State Humanities Council’s 2009 National Humanities Conference. More than 300 attendees representing every state spent two fun-filled days in Nebraska’s largest city. Conference attendees represented the cultural leadership of the U.S., and the time they spent in Nebraska changed their views about our state; so much so that many pledged to return later and vacation here.

The Outstanding Event Award for communities with populations up to 10,000, went to Nebraska’s Big Rodeo in Burwell. Since 1921, this town of 1,100 people has hosted one of the biggest events in central Nebraska. This year, every motel, hotel, bed & breakfast, RV park and campground from Burwell to Ord and surrounding counties was booked solid to accommodate the more than 20,000 rodeo visitors.

The Outstanding Event Award for communities with populations greater than 10,000 was given to Kool-Aid Days in Hastings. When Edwin Perkins invented Kool-Aid in 1927, he couldn’t have imagined it would one day lead to an annual festival. What began in 1998 as a way for the Hastings Museum to celebrate its new Kool-Aid exhibit has since grown into a three-day, community-wide celebration that attracted 40,000 people in 2010.

The Outstanding Tourism Association Award was won by Beatrice 20/20 Vision. This grassroots organization uses creative and forward thinking ideas to promote and develop the Big Blue River watershed as a recreational destination. What began as a project to clean up the river quickly turned into a campaign to increase the river’s economic, social and tourism potential.

The Outstanding Tourism Campaign Award went to Scotts Bluff County Tourism. “Nebraska’s Landmark Country,” the new marketing brand for Scott Bluff County, takes advantage of two scenic wonders unique to the region, Scotts Bluff National Monument and Chimney Rock National Historic Site. “Nebraska like you’ve never seen it” is the brand’s tag line and it promotes the area as a place that will inspire and surprise visitors with its stunning natural land formations and wild beauty.

The Outstanding Tourism Publication Award was won by the Lexington Visitors Guide. Published by the Lexington Clipper-Herald Newspaper, the guides’s 35 pages are packed with everything there is to know about the city. Colorful photographs show visitors how much fun they can expect to have in Lexington, whether exploring the Heartland Museum of Military Vehicles, fishing or bird watching, hunting, or visiting the Antique Extravaganza or the Dawson County Fair.

The Outstanding Website Award went to the Nebraska Association of Bed and Breakfasts. Members of the association are continually working to increase membership, promote the state’s many B&B’s and stay current with the latest marketing trends and ideas. In 2009, the site was completely redesigned, including a new address (, an interactive map and the latest technology. Members can update and edit content, upload photographs and information, and promote their B&B to particular target markets.

The Outstanding Tourism Attraction Award was given to the Cedar Run ATV Trail. The trail – on exposed sections of the lake bed – began as a way to bring outside tourism revenue to Harlan County Lake when water levels dropped due to a multi-year drought. When water levels rebounded, an innovative partnership between the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Harlan County Tourism, Harlan County Community Foundation and the Nebraska Game & Parks Commission garnered the support and funds to create the Cedar Run ATV Trail. Local lodging tax revenue more than doubled during the past two years, due in part to its promotion as a haven for ATV riders.

The Outstanding Nature-Tourism Entity Award celebrates the state’s many outdoor recreational pastimes and activities. This year’s winner was Calamus Outfitters/Switzer Ranch. The ranch is a 12,000-acre operation located in Loup County near Calamus Reservoir. Since 2000, the ranch has become an outdoor recreational paradise offering lodging, hunting, trail rides, bird and wildlife viewing, and canoeing, tanking, and tubing trips, and unique Sandhills Safari Tours. The ranch also has become a haven for bird watchers, with participation in its bird watching tours increasing from 50 in 2005 to more than 500 in 2009.

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