A 'Virtual Think Tank' was held on April 11th. The live recording is below. Please note some technical difficulties while everyone introduced themselves. The actual discussion starts just before 4 minutes in, and lasts around one hour.
Building on the success of our Virtual Panel Discussions, we are now planning to use this same technology to host something we are calling a "Virtual Think Tank". Unlike Panel Discussions, there are no presumed "experts". The purpose of a Think Tank is to create an industry forum where people can discuss specific challenges affecting our industry and brainstorm possible solutions. The format will be more of a round table chat than the question and answer format used during the panel discussions.
Our first Virtual Think Tank discussion focused on developing tools and marketing campaigns to increase direct bookings in hostels. Watch it here.
As most of us know, there has been a lot of discussion, ideas, and thoughts on how we as an industry can take control of our own future. Ideas range from building our own booking engine to poster campaigns to educate and inform travelers. This round table chat allowed us to broadly discuss the merits of these various ideas, and how they could work in reality.
The purpose of this discussion was not necessarily to find all of the answers, but to identify tools and marketing campaigns that have the highest probability of success, and therefore warrant further discussion and development. Ideas that have merit can be discussed further in future Think Tanks.
If you haven't read the post from Community Manager Rucksack Brian summing up the Book Direct and Save campaigns that started in Dublin, read it here. It's packed with good info.
What questions or ideas do you have after watching this first chat? What actionable steps do you think we as individuals and as an industry should take? Post them here and help keep this going.
If you are interested in participating in future 'Think Tanks', please email me as well.