Get Cozy With Your Local CVB

travel writers know to get close with their CVB
12 April 2010 Post Author:
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Here’s a secret that most traditional travel writers know, but only a few travel bloggers seem to.

Almost every city or town has a CVB (Convention and Visitor’s Bureau). A CVB’s mission is to promote their locale as a tourist destination, and they typically LOVE to work with travel writers and travel bloggers who have the same goal.

It doesn’t matter if you write about your own backyard, or write about places all over the world.

Don’t overlook the opportunities you might find through a CVB.

Wherever you write about, there is someone there whose job is to be a resource – for information, for potential market leads, story ideas and angles, and possibly photographs.

Often these CVBs will have monthly newsletters you can subscribe to, providing you with a wealth of inspiration and assistance, and contact information for various area businesses in the hospitality industry.

If you’re the type who plans your trips in advance, don’t overlook the opportunities you might find by getting in touch with these wonderful people – get on their newsletter mailing list, and don’t hesitate to ask them for suggestions – they’ll be quick to tell you what should be on your “must do – must see” list while you’re there.

They can tell you about that unique, out-of-the-way hotel you might not otherwise find. They can tell you where the locals really go. They can even fill you in on the most interesting local characters you might want to meet and interview.

Start with your local CVB, and branch out from there If you develop a network of people who really care about helping you write about their destination, you’ll never lack for ideas and materials.

~Trisha

Do you work with CVBs? Share your tips!

11 Responses to “Get Cozy With Your Local CVB”

  1. Mary Jo
    Twitter:
    says:

    My state CVB as well as the large city/county ones are some of my very best sources. They’re great about getting me information before I need, are quick to respond to questions or fact checking, and have been delightful hosts for press trips. I can’t imagine trying to travel blog without them!
    .-= Mary Jo´s last blog post: Save Money on Wine Tasting with Downtown Napa Wine Tasting Card =-.

    • Excellent points, Mary Jo! I was hesitant to add that they are often invaluable when it comes to arranging press trips, but only because there is more to that whole issue than just asking for help with a trip – there’s often some ‘vetting’ of a writer/blogger that takes place (as well it should) and I think it deserves a whole blog post unto itself! :)

  2. James Hills
    Twitter:
    says:

    I agree, CVB’s are an incredible resource, but not all of them are savvy in terms of online media and many seem geared more towards serving the needs of print publications and “traditional” media.

    That being said, Florida’s CVB ROCKS … they even have a weekly (?) newsletter that goes to their members with PR opportunities all over the state. There are others that have a similar system, but either way, CVB’s are a tremendous resource and can almost always help you find a great source from their membership for your stories.

    • True, many of them are slow to recognize the value that travel bloggers can bring, but they’re coming around! :)

      Our Phoenix, AZ CVB is another one that rocks, as does the Bellingham, WA CVB (kudos to the Bellingham folks for their excellent newsletter packed with story leads).

      I think ANY travel blogger that wants to be taken seriously should be exploring this writer/CVB relationship – I see only an upside for both.

  3. Great post – we have just begun to reach out to CVBs and you just gave me some more tips on how to utilize these great resources! Thanks!

  4. Maria Staal
    Twitter:
    says:

    Very interesting idea to use the visitor centres (as we call them here) as a source for ideas on what to write about. Although I am not a travel writer myself, I can see the benefits of having a close connection with them.
    .-= Maria Staal´s last blog post: The Romans Set the Stage =-.

  5. I’m glad you’ve had positive experiences with your local CVBs. I can’t say that I have. I’ve been in to our local CVB to get information to send to friends who will be visiting us from China, and was rudely treated. I also went in as a travel writer asking them for assistance and story ideas about our area they’d like to see more coverage of, and was told they weren’t interested. For my trip to England last year, for which I had an assignment, I contacted a CVB and they never bothered to respond. Maybe I’m taking the wrong approach . . .

  6. Candice
    Twitter:
    says:

    Something I’ve actually never considered, geeez. Thanks for the sweet tip!
    .-= Candice´s last blog post: It’s JUNOS Week in St. John’s! =-.

  7. Super idea. We know well our local area, but the further we go, the more we need the advice of local people. We have also found that innkeepers and barkeeps are really great sources for local, hidden treasures. And they have been invaluable in finding Romantic Getaway Ideas! Great post.
    .-= Kingsley Lyon´s last blog post: Apr 14, Hotels in Thousand Oaks for your California Vacation =-.

  8. I totally agree with you. But, I am from The Netherlands and CVB’s are called VVV over here. And the Dutch VVV’s do their job 50/50. Sure they do help the tourists, but they help them in a way they make a lot of money from them. For example, the Hotel rates are much higher.

    • Hi Kasteel – thanks for commenting! That’s very sad that the VVVs in The Netherlands are not as altruistic as the CVBs are here – of course ours could be steering tourists in directions that make them money too, but maybe they aren’t as obvious about it.

      In any case, as long as they are helping the writers then hopefully the writers can do a better job of informing the tourists!

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