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Compromise is in the Air

Headshot-jack-johnsonAs we begin to close out the week before those in the Destination Marketing world begin to celebrate National Travel & Tourism Week, two of the most high-profile political stand-offs appear to have found a sense of common ground.

The now-annual battle between the Florida House of Representatives and Visit Florida appears to have been mitigated with a compromise agreement to keep the DMO's doors open...but with a 25% reduction in State investment in the program. Sadly, you can be sure this won't be the last time this battle erupts again in Tallahassee.

And, in New Orleans (where the Mayor channeled the donkey in Shrek when referring to her disagreements with DMO Chief Stephen Perry in a State hearing), it looks like a deal is also in the offing.

In both cases, Destination Marketing loses ground...but not the war.

I was honored to be a presenter at this week's summit of the Virginia Association of Destination Marketing Organizations, where I heard a DMO pro sigh that it is so hard to tell our story to government because what we do is not a "core service."

Destinations International's Jack Johnson quickly retorted, "but, Destination Marketing is a core service." And, minutes later, took to the stage to prove it.

Let's make this the year that the conversation of our importance and efficacy shifts from defense to offense. Our communities deserve no less.

Bill Geist

Bill GeistBill Geist

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