Fort Smith Tourism App Ready To Download – Times Record

FORT Smith

Times Record Fort Smith Tourism App Ready To Download Times Record Image Courtesy Fort Smith Convention & Visitors Bureau A mobile app for both iPhones and Android smartphones and tablets is now available from the Fort Smith Convention & Visitors…

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Finally! If you dig through my blogs on tourism and location based technology I have been prodding and waiting for apps like this for so long.

On my last 3,500km USA road trip I found it so hard to get good information. I emailed tourism boards and got very nice old school magazines about places to see and things to do, but it was all but impossible to reference them on a single trip map.

If it wasn’t for the fact that I am an uber geek and had my trusty TomTom, Foursquare, and a pile of other apps I would have missed out on so many great locations and also struggled to remember where all the hundreds of photos I took came from. If you are going on a road trip check out these blogs for some ideas that will make your trip more enjoyable.

I’m a long way from Fort Smith, so I have to go by the article, but it sounds like everything I was looking for:

-Places to visit

-Maps and navigation

-the ability to communicate with retailers and attractions

-deals from businesses based on your interests and your current location

Of course the app is only one side of the coin. The hard part is getting the local businesses to embrace it. It’s no use having the ability to make offers. Retailers and attractions now have to come to the party and use it. That will not come natural to them.

I do hope that the developers have considered the potential to work with a marketing company to provide information to local businesses about potential customers and how to use the system.

I had a complete concept developed around this space in a previous life and found that they key was that most businesses didn’t understand the opportunities that location based services offer. The strength isn’t about old school marketing of discounts and coupons. It’s easy but its complex in that it will not be front of mind.

The times you want to offer deals is when you’re quiet. If the sightseeing tour bus is going to be half empty, do a deal for the tourists close by that are using the app. People on a full bus will have much more fun.

If the app knows you have kids and its a hot day, give them a deal at Parrot Park. Water slides and pools are much more fun for kids when they are busy with new friends to play with. Parrot Island.JPG

Much of US tourism is still focused on old school paper or on web pages that are just a republish of the paper version. They will not generate more business. But even the best app, without engaging the businesses will have limited success. So I hope that the Fort Smith Convention and Visitors Bureau understands that the app is just the starting point. If they do it well, it could be a great financial boost for the region and the industry.

Fort Smith Convention & Visitors Bureau
Fort Smith Convention & Visitors Bureau

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About Luigi Cappel

Writer for hire, marketing consultant specialising in Location Based Services. Futurist and Public Speaker Auckland, New Zealand
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