That’s A Wrap! Destinations International 2017: Our Highlights from This Year’s Convention

Monya Mandich, VP, Marketing, Expedia Group Media Solutions
July 21, 2017
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While this year’s convention represented a collection of key influencers and thought leaders from destinations worldwide, it was especially unique for three reasons: DMAI has now rebranded to Destinations International, the Culture of Learning, and it was the first time we hosted an Insights Forum at this annual event.

Rebranding and Repositioning

Destinations International embarked on a rebranding initiative because they wanted to serve the tourism community more effectively. Leaders from Destinations International sought advice from the tourism community who advocated for change and repositioning. The result is a rebranded and repositioned organization that is collaborative and forward thinking. Aiding in this effort, the organization created four pillars to promote excellence in the destination management industry. These are: Community, Advocacy, Research, and Education. Additionally, this rebranding is research-driven and incorporates extensive testing and evaluation to make informed decisions. Destinations International will evolve for the rest of 2017 as it continues to develop its position as a global leader for destination marketers. Expedia Media Solutions is excited to be part of this organization and its bold endeavor. We look forward to helping Destinations International propel tourism to its highest potential.

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Destination International’s Culture of Learning

Learning and development has always been indispensable to this organization. We’ve enjoyed the interactive and creative culture it promotes. At its center are four values:

  • Connect with peers and thought leaders from inside and outside the industry.
  • Learn in an integrated approach, regardless of budget size or discipline focus.
  • Recognize our leaders and their accomplishments on behalf of the industry.
  • Exchange ideas and strengthen relationships among industry providers and destination marketers.

These prevailing virtues made for an atmosphere of growth and knowledge acquisition. And this year, the sharing of knowledge allowed attendees to glean new perspectives on trends for destination marketers, the ever-changing landscape of technology within the travel industry, and leveraging data to craft compelling stories.

Our Insights Forum at Destinations International

We were proud to host our first Insights Forum at the Destinations International Annual Convention.  We have shared our custom research and consumer insights at various industry events, but this was our first time doing so at the Destination International annual convention and we were pleased with the engagement from attendees. We showcased tourists’ travel habits in our recent study. Commissioned through Northstar Research, the study examines online behaviors of travelers around the world, across devices, and throughout the consumer journey. This research illustrates the complex and time-consuming purchase journey of digital travelers in key markets such as: the United States, the United Kingdom, France, China, and more.

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Our experts revealed the latest insights and reporting capabilities marketers can expect from our first-party data—allowing industry decision-makers to transform these insights into action. Bolstered by our research, our digital advertising tools for destination marketers empowers you to engage travelers throughout the consumer journey—from inspiration to in-trip.

Our Insights Forum is an example of how Destinations International is continuing to improve the terrain of destination marketing through thought leadership and cutting-edge research as part of their rebranding and repositioning. It also represents the culture of learning as this convention creates a space to share new findings across the industry.  

If you’re interested in learning more about the research we presented in our Insights Forum, click here  <https://info.advertising.expedia.com/multi-national-travel-trends-in-the-tourism-industry> to download the study. If you’ve found this content compelling, remember to subscribe to our blog to get our latest industry insights!

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Monya Mandich
VP, Marketing, Expedia Group Media Solutions
Monya Mandich is the VP, Marketing of Expedia Group Media Solutions and oversees all integrated marketing and communications activities for the brand. In her role, she is responsible for raising awareness of digital media opportunities for partners across the Expedia Group suite of leading global travel brands. With nearly two decades of experience, she evangelizes a thought leadership approach both externally and internally centered on data-driven insights, which has resulted in travel and marketing industry recognition and accolades. Monya previously managed strategic partnership development, executing strategies for top-tier partnerships, maximizing traffic and revenue for Expedia.com. She started her career in the travel space at VacationSpot.com, where she ran the B2B marketing and customer acquisition efforts for the vacation rental booking site. Monya is on the board of directors for Destinations International and the U.S. Travel, and also participates on the advisory committee for U.S. Travel's Project: Time Off, which aims to shift thinking around the health, business and economic value of personal time off, Monya was also recognized as one of HSMAI’s Top 25 Most Extraordinary Minds in Sales and Marketing. She is a graduate of Western Washington University and lives in the Seattle area with her family.
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