World Travel Market Wrap-Up

I’ve returned from the World Travel Market (WTM) in London with powerful insights, encouraging connections and strategically designed plans for the future.

During the three days we exhibited, we met with meeting planners, tour operators, transportation companies, members of the media, including bloggers and influencers, travel wholesalers, destination marketing and public relations professionals. Our intention was to attract global awareness to Winter Park, to ensure that these travel professionals realize Winter Park’s unique cultural offerings and make plans to visit.

Our developments were twofold: we acquired best practices from other successful destination marketing approaches and strategized our short, middle and long-term approaches for a successful tourism campaign for Winter Park.

In my last blog post, I spoke of the importance of our global strategy, how the size and scale of our community are part of what makes it great, and how we want all of our efforts to promote tourism to respect our very special place in central Florida. It was encouraging to have our instincts about this strategy reaffirmed and to see Winter Park so well received on the global stage.

So many people we spoke with remarked that, while Orlando already attracts 68 million people, it was perfect placement to suggest Winter Park as an oasis from the crush of the theme parks. I was proud to find it wasn’t hard to explain the value of Winter Park: a place where visitors can enjoy a leisurely meal on Park Avenue, play nine holes of golf, and finish their trip with some of the best art in the world.

It was also wonderful to acknowledge the power of The Alfond Inn – which is increasingly becoming the first choice for lodging in Central Florida for those who can stay anywhere, including, most recently, Bill Gates.

At the World Travel Market, we began building a bridge between Winter Park and the rest of the world – and it became clear that our ascent to the global stage was welcome. We found Winter Park assumed its rightful place in an array of global tourist destinations, including our neighbors at the exhibition, destinations such as Costa Rica, Bangladesh, Qatar, the Maldives, Italy, and hundreds more.

You can expect evidence of our collaboration to begin as early as the first quarter of 2018. And as we build these strategies throughout 2018, we will remain surgically precise in our approach, always thoughtfully considering the right fit for our community.


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