Full Course


Start with an introduction to get up to speed and think through your marketing strategy, master the basics to grab visitors’ attention, build online networks, make much more of your tours, and unleash fans to rave about you online.

The Intro Workshop plus six lessons let you work at your own pace, and come with weekly email reminders to keep you on track.

Every lesson module has a Comments box where you can ask us questions and give feedback.

You’ll also be able to participate and ask questions in our private Our Town Matters Facebook Group.

Access to the course and the Group never expire, so you have a knowledge bank and support for as long as you want them.

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Full Course: All the Basics and The Results Multipliers

  1. Master the basics and grab visitors’ attention
  2. Build networks, promote, and let the tours begin
  3. Unleash online fans to rave about your destination, attraction, or hotel

You’ll go through an Intro Workshop to make sure you have all the introductory concepts down, including your overall communications strategy and with links to tourism-related examples that make sense. Then you’ll confidently move on to All the Basics (Lessons One through Three.) You’ll tune up your listening skills so you can hear the conversations that matter, and learn about managing your online reputation. You’ll find new ideas for your home bases – your website, blog, and Facebook Page.

After that, you’ll be ready to build social media outposts online and reach new visitors.

Then you can start on the Results Multipliers (Lessons Four through Six.) You’ll find and work with your online champions, supporters, and influencers. You’ll promote special events in new ways, and you’ll touch visitors with a variety of new tour media and visitor experiences.

(Would you like a little more personalized coaching and time with us as you move through the lessons? That’s our Full Course with Full Support.)

Introduction Workshop: What IS this social media stuff, and why should I care?

You don’t have to be an expert to get started. These lessons and videos help you understand overall communications strategy and escalate your tourism efforts.

  • Explaining blogs and Twitter
  • Explaining Facebook, photo-sharing platforms, and online video
  • Video: How a city gets started in social media
  • Video: How a communications director monitors Twitter

Lesson 1: How to Listen – Managing Your Online Presence and Reputation

  • Google listening tools
  • Listening on Twitter and Facebook
  • More free and paid listening services
  • Improve and refine your listening
  • How to respond to what you hear
  • Video: How @SeattleMaven monitors Twitter for Seattle tourism
  • Video: Morning coffee with @SeattleMaven

Lesson 2: Building a Home Base

  • Tips for a better website
  • Building a better blog
  • You’ve started a blog, now what?
  • Why you need a Facebook Page
  • Using images, video, and audio to enhance your home base sites
  • Video: Blogging lessons learned from Sheila

Lesson 3: Intro to Outposts

  • Twitter for tourism: why and how
  • Twitter starter pack: ideas for two weeks of tweets
  • Best ways to use social photography like Instagram and Pinterest
  • Best ways to get started shooting video
  • Other outpost services you can use to reach visitors
  • LinkedIn for destination marketing
  • Video: How the Lynchburg, Virginia CVB uses outpost sites

Lesson 4: Building Your Online Champions Network

  • Where do you find your online champions? (blogger and influencer outreach)
  • Building stronger online relationships
  • Bringing online relationships offline
  • Easy ways for your champions to help your destination marketing
  • Video: Learning to navigate the blogosphere
  • Video: Strategies for finding and pitching bloggers

Lesson 5: Promoting Special Events

  • Building up to your event
  • Social media promotion during events
  • Keeping the buzz going afterward
  • Video: Facebook promotion for a special event
  • Video:  Mobile tech for festivals
  • Video:  Using social media to crowdsource an event

Lesson 6: New Ways to Do Tours

  • Audio tours and programming, including podcasts
  • Video tours and basic video techniques
  • Getting mobile-friendly (do you really need an app?)
  • Connect to the web with your personal (fam/press) tours
  • Interview: Better blogger/PR relationships and press trips

(Are you thinking that you might only need one or two portions of the course? Go here to browse and purchase individual lessons.) 

Finding time to do it all

You can expect to complete all the lessons in about six weeks, although we can of course make timing adjustments if you need them.

  • Each week, you’ll be reminded to review a set of lesson pages, often with video or audio included to help you get the important concepts.
  • Each lesson includes interviews with experts in social media and tourism.
  • You’ll get a takeaway/checklist document for every lesson to keep you focused and moving forward.
  • Throughout the course, you can share ideas in the comments section on each page. Ask questions of us, plus see how other folks are doing it.
  • You’ll have access to us and your fellow tourism pros in our private Facebook Group “Our Town Matters.” Share ideas and ask questions any time!
  • Twice a month, you can get our newsletter to keep you up to date with the latest tips and trends.

Yes, we remember how to do paper. For assistance with government purchase orders or other payment methods, please use the contact form to start the process.