Three Texas convention and visitor bureaus, McAllen, Amarillo and Waco, pooled expertise and resources to create the Texas Top to Bottom journalist hosting project in 2011. This new approach to promote tourism received two awards at this past year’s Texas Association of Convention and Visitor Bureaus (TACVB) annual meeting in San Marcos.
The project was voted First Place in the annual TACVB Idea Fair in the Cooperative Marketing category. TACVB members voted on this People’s Choice Award.
Texas Top to Bottom was also judged the best Cooperative Marketing entry by a panel of communication experts from the San Marcos area, winning a Judges’ Choice Award as well.
The three bureaus, represented by Nancy Millar (McAllen), Eric Miller (Amarillo) and Lori Kasparian (Waco) developed this project to attract journalists to see the entire state through these three cities.
As far as the participating bureaus know, this is the first time bureaus have developed and implemented a cooperative effort for press relations. The accredited journalists spend an equal number of nights in each city, and the cities share all administrative duties and expenses.
The first journalist to take a Texas Top to Bottom visit, Carmel Mooney, has already placed multiple stories on each city in a variety of media in her home area, Sacramento, California. She has also written some online pieces that reach far beyond California.
More journalists are planned for the fall of 2011 and the spring of 2012.
Texas Association of Convention and Visitor Bureaus is the largest association of convention and visitor bureaus in the nation.