Press-Republican

Tuesday

October 15, 2013

Destination tourism: Adirondack collaboration

SARANAC LAKE — Destination-tourism marketing is ramping up with web-based interaction.

And a discussion Wednesday will look to early results.

In May, the Regional Office of Sustainable Tourism, based in Essex County, began assisting the Saranac Lake Area Chamber of Commerce with web marketing tools designed to give Saranac Lake’s Destination Marketing Plan wings.

Village of Saranac Lake Trustee Paul Van Cott explained that the coordinated effort at SaranacLake.com is working to interconnect local business operations with the myriad of events and recreational assets found here.

The goal is to incite growth.

GLOBAL MARKETING

“Our website has become a marketing tool, and ROOST is continuing to refine that,” Van Cott explained of information gathered from website interaction.

“The ROOST program through Jim McKenna is a world-class marketing program, helping Saranac Lake become a tourism destination.

“The website puts Saranac Lake on people’s radar screen. They see that this is one of the best places in the Adirondacks to go paddling, for example, that they can come and hike the Saranac Lake Sixers (nearby mountains), or they are drawn to events that we have.

“On the website, people have the opportunity to find lodging, to talk about it with people who have visited here and to see what is going on at local businesses. We really do see the ROOST program on behalf of Saranac Lake as one of the keys to our future as a tourism destination.” 

INTERACTIVE

The focus of the gathering set for Wednesday is to look at the next steps.

“What we’re trying to do is learn that (town and county) boundaries don’t really make a difference,” McKenna said in an interview Monday.

“We’ve always worked closely with Saranac Lake,” he said of Lake Placid’s approach to destination planning.

“And it’s not a matter of advertising anymore; it’s all about communication and the interaction with potential visitors in many different ways. People today use peer review all the time, so that people can interact about a potential vacation location with others who have been there before.”

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