4th E-Tourism Africa Summit - Huge Success

Cape Town. The 4th Annual E Tourism Africa Summit, sponsored by SA Tourism and Cape Town Tourism and held at the Cape Town International Convention Centre on the 15th and 16th  of September was a major success with approximately 300 people attending the two-day summit. There was a huge amount of online buzz about the summit, with over 20 pages of tweets and the summit became a trending topic on twitter for South Africa.

Damian Cook the CEO and Founder of E Tourism Frontiers was delighted with the feedback from theevent. “This year’s summit has certainly been our most successful event to date, we have been inundated with emails and tweets from both the speakers and delegates on how useful they found the content and how inspiring the presentations were. We are extremely pleased and we are very grateful to SA Tourism as the Title sponsor and Cape Town Tourism as the Host sponsor”, said Cook.

This year’s line up of speakers included Jason Schlosberg, the American tourist who created of “The Battle of Kruger” the safari video that went on to become an award winning Internet sensation, with over 62 million views. Jason spoke about his experience via a live Skype call from New York.  Another extremely popular presentation and a first time speaker in South Africa was Sally Broom, the CEO and Founder of Tripbod.com.

Sally spoke about her company – Tripbod.com and how it now spans 80 countries, with local experts on local destinations giving potential visitors inside advice on the best things to do and see.  The local experts become ‘Tripbods’ and help like-minded travellers plan the perfect trip - from a truly local food experience to an offbeat adrenalin-packed adventure.

There were also new and exciting presentations from Trip Advisor, Expedia and Google, with lots of fresh insights showing how consumers book and decide their travel preferences online. Trip Advisor’s Helena Egan, also encouraged the sector to engage actively online and respond to reviews, both good and bad, she did say that approximately 70% of reviews on Trip Advisor were positive.

This year’s summit also contained a new approach in the programme.  The second day of the summit offered delegates the option of attending a full day’s practical online tourism seminar.  Another option was the Panel sessions. The panel sessions were well attended and there was a lot of interesting discussions about the new online roles for destination managers, travel agents, tour operators, wildlife managers and airlines, all moderated by leading international experts.

Both SA Tourism and Cape Town Tourism sponsored a number of Tourism SMEs to attend the summit.  SA Tourism sponsored 100 delegates from the Western Cape and they also produced an Online Tourism Textbook, which was given to all the delegates attending the conference.  The textbook outlines a step by step guide to working more effectively online and it also profiles local case studies on South African companies using online media in their tourism business.

The CEO of Cape Town Tourism, Mariette du Toit Helmbod, said the summit would continue Cape Town’s message of becoming Future Fit and it also profiled many local digital success stories that will encourage the sector to focus more online.

“As a destination Cape Town is increasing its marketing profile and presence online. Our Facebook Group, I ♥ Cape Town, is incredibly popular with one of the largest group of destination fans in the world, we have regular blogs, Flickr competitions and web itineraries that all form part of a communications solution. We must ensure that we have a destination that will be popular and connected to the new travellers of the next decade. Certainly this year’s E Tourism Africa Summit gave us lots of fresh new insights, as an industry, a lot of opportunities and examples of how we can create a stronger and more sustainable future in tourism”, said the Cape Town Tourism CEO.

William Price, the Global eMarketing Manager for South African Tourism, said that the E Tourism Africa summit was a great opportunity for the tourism sector to catch up with all the latest online technology. “There really were some amazing presentations at this year’s summit and I now think South Africa’s tourism sector has a much greater understanding about the power of online marketing. I am thrilled that we were able to sponsor so many local tourism companies to attend and hear from the world’s online tourism experts. Both with the information from the presentations and the Online Tourism Textbook, I feel that our market will be much better equipped to change and benefit from online marketing.  Our market has some of the richest, most diverse and dramatic destinations on the planet and the limitless world of the web to tell our stories”,said Price.


For additional information visit www.e-tourismfrontiers.comor contact info@e-tourismfrontiers.com


Or contact Davina Martin at Fleishman Hillard Johannesburg.

Email: davina.martin@fleishman.co.za

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