Wollongong puts social media skills to the test in bid to host international 'SoMeT' conference

Wollongong_DeeKramer_108.jpgWollongong has been named as the sole New South Wales finalist in an international online competition to host Australia's first Social Media Tourism Symposium (SoMeT13AU).

SoMeT is the premier conference for tourism professionals looking to share ideas and network. The Australian event on July 17-18 is aimed at digital destination marketing professionals across the Asia Pacific region and will mark the first time the event has been held outside the US.

For more information, call 1800 240 737, visit www.visitwollongong.com.au or follow DW on Facebook here or on Twitter here.
To determine the location of the conference, Australian destinations were invited to submit a proposal outlining their hosting credentials. From there, seven finalists, including tourism hotspots Melbourne, Brisbane, Margaret River and the Great Barrier Reef were chosen to go head to head in a Facebook vote-off over three rounds.

Says Mark Sleigh, Destination Wollongong managing director: "It's fantastic to see Wollongong positioned alongside the likes of Melbourne and the Great Barrier Reef as not only a top tourist destination but also as a leader in the social media space.

"Our We Love the Gong social media campaign has been hugely successful in attracting tourists to our city, but winning the opportunity to host a prestigious international symposium will really put us on the map and strengthen our position as a progressive force in online destination marketing.

"It also has the added benefit of providing local businesses with access to an international conference where they can also learn best social media practice."

Sleigh said Wollongong had a proven track record in hosting events of this calibre.

Says Sleigh: "Not only are the city's venues well-equipped with conferencing technology but we also have access to a wide network of suppliers and partners who can provide delegates with an experience to remember, whether it is a fantastic seafood dinner sourced from our harbour, or a bird's eye view of Wollongong from one of our great adventure products.
"We are proud to represent New South Wales in this competition and encourage people throughout the state to get behind Wollongong and vote."

To vote visit the Social Media Tourism Symposium Facebook page daily between today and February 22. The four destinations with the most votes will progress to round two.

The destination is not the only aspect of the event that will be chosen by online voters. Symposium topics and guest speakers are also chosen following input from the organisation's global online community.

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