Why TBEX?…Part 1
Written By SATW Member Barbara Orr
There was so much buzz and excitement at TBEX that one of the best parts of the experience was absorbing some of that energy. What surprised me most was the diversity of attendees – all ages, different career stages, different areas of specialty. All those levels, all that contrast of perspective certainly added to the experience .
I was happy that SATW had a significant and noticeable presence there. The cocktail party on Friday became a sought after invite, and the crowd that schmoozed at Gretzky’s was a good combination of those SATW members who are embracing social media and bloggers who are seriously pursuing a career in travel writing and are interested in partnering with us. I finally met two prominent editors whom I have been working with electronically for ages. It was hugely valuable to meet them face to face.
It was an excellent forum for recruiting writers who will be the future leaders in the field. Right now the blogging world is full of such a variety of writers – from the desultory scribblers who are looking for a place to publish their observations about life, to serious writers who are using social media as their platform for professional communication. When the tree gets shaken and a lot of the loose fruit falls off, the ones left will, without doubt, be the new generation of travel writers who provide content and curate travel for the reading public. And we want them in the SATW fold.
There were one or two complaints from SATW members that we should not have been spending money on a presence at TBEX, but those voices were in the minority, and the impact of our event and the table prominently placed in the media area, as well as the personal networking by our members and our executive, clearly accomplished something that no amount of membership recruitment could have done as well. The event at Gretzky’s had a good, relaxed vibe, but was done on a shoestring.
Money well spent, in my opinion.