Deep Diver
Magazine Online    The Authority On African-American Conventions, Incentives, & Leisure Travel
Industry Briefs
BLACK MEETINGS & TOURISM STEPS UP ACTIVITIES IN SEPTEMBER & OCTOBER

As the travel, tourism and meeting industry slowly comes back to life, Black Meetings & Tourism has stepped up it's experiential marketing and promotional offerings for those destinations and other entities that are interested in reaching and expanding their share of the African-American market segment.

Solomon Herbert

Toward this end, BM&T re-launched its Hosted Buyer Program, put on hold as a result of the COVID pandemic in 2020.   The first destination to take advantage of this impressive event was Visit Milwaukee.   Heading the effort that organized this event was our media company's meeting planner Katrina Ruff, and her expert Forums Meetings & Events team, that brought 14 seasoned and vetted African-American planners to witness first hand a taste of what Milwaukee has to offer (see Visit Milwaukee Showcases Community to Black Meeting Planners in this issue for more details).

If your destination is interested in tapping into the $129+ billion African-American meetings & leisure travel market segment, get in touch with Black Meetings & Tourism to schedule your hosted buyer event, where we will bring 8-14 Black meeting planners to your city with RFPs in hand as the first step to grow your share of this lucrative niche!.

Gloria & Solomon Herbert at IMEX Booth

BM&T also exhibited at IMEX America again this year, where we had an opportunity to network with destination reps from around the globe.   We had the pleasure of interacting with old friends like Al Hutchinson (president/CEO of Visit Baltimore), Cleo Battle (president/CEO of Louisville Tourism, and Chantel Ross Francois (executive director of South Fulton CVB), as well as hang out with our industry partners from Visit Milwaukee, Destination DC, the U.S. Virgin Islands Department of Tourism , and Visit Detroit, to mention a few.

One of the highlights of IMEX for me was the Black Meetings & Tourism Meet Up for African-American Planners at a luxurious Caesars Palace suite on Tuesday night, October 11, hosted by Caesars Entertainment.   The gala reception, which included great food and drinks, was attended by over 70 registered guests (mostly planners), as well as a sizable number of meeting planners and other industry colleagues who heard about the event and showed up without registering.   Among the registered guests was our dear friend and industry icon Roosevelt Toston (now retired), who was the very first African-American at the Las Vegas CVA.   Once again we must thank Katrina Ruff and her Forums Team (which included her beautiful daughter Tiara and her son Rickey), for making this event such a big hit!   Plans are already underway to hold the BM&T Meet Up again next year at an even larger Caesars venue.

And finally, BM&T has a TV travel show in the early stages of development that you will be hearing more about in the very near future.

Please reach out to me if any of the above events are of interest to you, or if you have any other ideas of how we can partner with you.  There are surely opportunities we can explore to help increase your share of the African-American meetings and leisure travel market.

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