United States-based Caribbean communicator Bevan Springer believes Caribbean marketers ought to share more stories of the Caribbean people, their talents and accomplishments when promoting the region in the marketplace.Speaking at the first Caribbean Hospitality Industry Exchange Forum (CHIEF) in Puerto Rico on "Strategic Storytelling", Springer - president and chief executive of the Marketplace Excellence public relations practice - encouraged delegates to keep the creative talent that is abundant within the Caribbean at the forefront of promotional campaigns.
He said using the full spectrum of communications tools from traditional print to multimedia, Caribbean Hotel and Tourism Association (CHTA) members have tremendous opportunities to share the region's "creative intellect and genius" with the global community as Caribbean people are largely responsible for contributing to positive experiences for the millions of visitors who travel to the region.
In a presentation entitled "Getting the Story WRITE," Springer, a weekly newspaper columnist and former New York City-based radio host, also urged members of the audience to establish a clear brand identity for their businesses and tell the brand's story in everything that they do.
"If your brand is the epitome of local hospitality, then offer a local beverage as a welcome amenity, hire local staff, serve local food, use locally sourced bath products - then promote it," he asserted.
Springer went on to champion the full embrace of social media in telling the Caribbean story. "Hotels and other enterprises should leave no stone unturned in the social media arena, and empower their staff to also share stories that bring brands to life," he commented. "This adds value, validation and personality to your brand."
Also participating in the panel discussion were Karolin Troubetzkoy of St. Lucia's Anse Chastanet and Jade Mountain resorts; Richard Kahn, President of Kahn Travel Communications; Sylvia Scholey of Elegant Hotels of Barbados; Uncommon Caribbean's Patrick Bennett; and Laura Walker, Group Publisher of Bonnier Corporation.
A former United Nations correspondent, Springer is an architect of the Caribbean Media Exchange on Sustainable Tourism (CMEx), designed to improve the quality of media coverage of sustainable tourism in the Caribbean.
Marketplace Excellence Corporation (MPE) is a full-service, integrated marketing agency committed to excellence in the fields of public relations, marketing and media coaching. The company represents clients in areas ranging from travel to healthcare to food exports and small business.