I thought I would begin this blog with a photograph, partly to add content but also to test out a little bit of software. I have tried to upload photos before but they have failed and latterly I have learned that the file size may have been too big, just too much detail for blogger to handle, apparently an image on the internet does not need to be as ‘intense’ as an image for, say a glossy colour brochure. So my bit of software can reduce the number of pixels in the photographs so that they can be uploaded much more quickly but still be viewable.
As a consequence of being in the tourism business we get bombarded with information from one source or another, the Northern Ireland Tourist Board has three publications, The View, Tourism Eye, and the Tourism Spotlight, who these are intended for and how the content differs I don’t know. We get another publication from ‘TIL’ , (Tourism Ireland Limited) which is the organisation charged with marketing Ireland on a whole Island basis, there is also Failte Ireland which is responsible for marketing the South of Ireland and I am sure that they have a raft of in-house publications as well.
What I notice is that the most important person in this chain is often overlooked, namely the visitor, is there any publication or E-zine that they can sign up to and be kept informed about happenings within Ireland north and south. It is a bit like the now infamous debate we had in our local council last month, the Tourist Board were admirably funding the erection of new sign-age for a coastal route around the Mourne Mountains, and it came before the local Council for approval.
Here, however, rather than welcoming this development, the issue became the language that the signs were to be in, the Tourist Board were funding signs in English only, but some of our Councillors in their wisdom thought that they should also be in Irish and just as readily a few more thought that they should then also be in Ulster Scots. I think the fundamental point was missed, if language was to be an issue, it should have been which language would most have met the needs of our visitors, German, French, Dutch perhaps?
Back to the matter of those publications, as mentioned TIL, remember who they are?, have a publication called Contact, and apart from the usual range of photos of people in suits standing beside pull-up banners there is some good information, as indeed there is in all the publications, just do we need so many? One article caught my eye, it is a campaign to connect with people of Irish Ancestry throughout the world using twitter, you can read more about the article by clicking on this link, apparently the best tweet will get a 140 hour short break in Ireland.
The magical 140 figure comes from the maximum characters you can use in a tweet, you would think I would know what I am talking about, but I haven’t a clue really, however next week I have planned some training on social media. This campaign to connect with the Irish Diaspora, as it is called, ie Irish people spread across the world can be checked out on an associated website