The Meadowlands Liberty Convention & Visitors Bureau (MLCVB) hosted its 12th annual mDEST—the premier annual educational and networking event for New Jersey’s hospitality and tourism professionals—on September 26 at the Meadowlands Expo Center.
The Conference offered topical information on how to attract and create life-long clientele among hard-to-reach but loyal demographics including Foreign Independent Travelers (FIT), LGBT and Millennials. The keynote speaker was Jake Buganski, acting executive director, State of NJ, Division of Travel and Tourism. The event also featured presentation of the Annual Hospitourism Awards.
“Tourism is a $38.2 billion industry for New Jersey but there’s lots of competition from neighboring states so it’s critical for our hospitality industry to grab the attention of newly emerging demographics with appealing experiences,” said Judy Ross, Vice President of the MLCVB and Meadowlands Regional Chamber. “We’ve put together a line-up of experts that will help New Jersey stand out for its superior hospitality to domestic and international visitors of all ages and creeds.”
A session called Meet Your Markets was presented by Julie Payne, CTP, CTIS, Project Manager of RLB Marketing & Creator of Get Fit. She shared critical insight on how to attract the foreign independent traveler (FIT) along with dynamic but very specific LGBT and millennial markets.
A session called Placemaking to Activate & Enhance Your Community was presented by Jef Buehler of New Jersey Department of Community Affairs. He explained how to define your market so you get noticed — and entice new visitors.
What’s Your Experience? Chloe E. Stewart, Creative Manager at Coca Cola and Caroline Acosta, Senior Manager of Partnership Activation at the NY Mets, presented a session that discussed the dynamic partnership between Coca-Cola and the NY Mets and how to re-construct your destination within its capacity to provide unique experiences for target groups.
Click here to see the 2017 Hospitourism Award recipients.
Click here to see photos from the event.
mDEST2017 was sponsored by NY Waterway, RPM Raceway, SiteVist360.com, InThyme Catered Events, Medieval Times Dinner and Tournament, Meadowlands Exposition Center, Coca-Cola and Personal Touch Experience.