Strategies of Successful Destination Marketing Professionals


Destination Marketing pic
Destination Marketing

A leader in the destination marketing industry, Daniel (Dan) Fenton is a former CEO of Team San Jose, where he led the San Jose Convention and Visitors Bureau. He has since taken on the role of executive vice president of the Jones Lang LaSalle (JLL) Hotel and Hospitality Group. Dan Fenton recently shared his thoughts about how the tourism and hospitality industry is evolving and what those who are successful have done to stand out.

One of the factors that has led to the success in the hospitality and tourism industry is ongoing destination master planning. This entails engaging in continual advocacy and searching for ways to improve the experience of visitors. The same must occur for the delegate experience for event and convention professionals.

Successful destination marketing professionals never stop searching for the next opportunity to capitalize on within a given destination. They consider how each opportunity will enhance the visitor’s experience and then plan how to advocate for it and how to fund it. This is critical because destination marketers are competing for discretionary dollars with the entertainment industry.

Another major factor is relevant marketing tailored to the target audience. With technology having evolved exponentially over the last few years, destination marketing planners have more tools at their disposal than ever before. Successful marketing campaigns determine how to reach the target audience with a truly compelling message that brings individuals from that audience to the destination.


Five Tips for Enhancing the Guest Experience


Meet AC Nonprofit Created to Boost Atlantic City Convention Sales

Casino Reinvestment Development Authority pic
Casino Reinvestment Development Authority

Formerly the chief executive officer of Team San Jose, in San Jose, California, Daniel “Dan” Fenton now holds the title of executive vice president of the Hotels & Hospitality Group at Jones Lang Lasalle (JLL). In 2014, while an associate principal with Strategic Advisory Group, Dan Fenton consulted with the Casino Reinvestment Development Authority (CRDA) on activities related to a merger with the Atlantic City Convention & Visitors Authority required by Tourism District legislation passed in 2011.

A core focus was on engineering the “merging back out” of convention sales activities from the CRDA and into the nonprofit Meet AC entity. This required a partnership agreement and was seen as a way of moving beyond stringent state regulations that necessitated advanced travel approval and restricted sales compensation packages from being competitive with the industry. It was also seen as a pathway toward boosting Atlantic City’s convention sales, which had declined by 15 percent from 2010 to 2013.

Mr. Fenton spoke of the Meet AC arrangement as one that followed a well-defined path, as virtually all convention sales organizations are configured as nonprofit entities.