The Missouri Division of Tourism (MDT) presents its annual Governor’s Conference on Tourism, Sept. 11-13, 2012, at the Kansas City Marriott Downtown, two blocks from the Power and Light District. The theme: Creative Crossroads.

The conference is where anyone interested in Missouri’s tourism industry can learn and be informed about the newest methods of advertising, public relations, social media, Internet practices and innovations, and other topics which directly affect travel and tourism. Plus, there are opportunities to network and socialize with tourism industry members and experts. This conference is open to all; you do not have to be working in the tourism industry to attend.

Here is a brief rundown of the stimulating, topnotch tourism experts MDT has assembled.

  • Keynote Speaker:

“Welcome to Your Land of Dreams” Chris Perkins, Chief Marketing Officer of Brand USA, outlines how Brand USA is marketing the U.S.; what that means for Missouri; and how to get involved in attracting international travelers.

  • General Session:

And All That Jazz — An Interlude with MDT MDT’s director, Katie Steele Danner, is joined by representatives from Hoffman|Lewis, MTD’s advertising and PR agency of record, to share MDT’s accomplishments for the past year; where the Division and the industry are going; new programs; and what to expect in the following year. Governor Jeremiah “Jay” Nixon has been invited to speak.

  • Breakout Sessions:

“When You Come to a Fork in the Road: Take It” Andrew McCrea, nationally syndicated radio host of “American Countryside” discusses outside-the-box approaches to developing leaders. He gets you thinking about measuring and monitoring organizational effectiveness and tracking vital information.

“Flash Forward: Make Sure Your Photos Hit the Right Note” Kevin Miyazaki tells us how to stop bad photography from blurring the message; how good photography on websites, in brochures, and in advertisements can make the difference between success and failure.

“Don’t Hold the Sauce: Ingredients for Social Media Connoisseurs” Josh Hallett shows how a comprehensive publishing strategy fuels successful social media efforts for some of the world's largest brands; he reviews the six P's of content: Planning; Production; Publishing; Promotion; Participation; Performance.

“Hitting the Right Note on Product Development” Mike Konzen offers helpful hints for inventing, developing, and promoting new products, and tells fun stories and techniques.

“Find Your Own Sense of Place: An Artistic Approach to Geotourism” Jeff Welch shares new ideas to promote regional attractions; how to recognize your local historical, cultural or environmental uniqueness; and how those assets attract Geotravelers.

“A Slice of Culinary Creations” A panel of experts discusses how a “Restaurant Week” brings together diverse cuisines and how to package them to help sell a destination.

“Are We Addicted to Online Reviews?” Noah Tratt, Global Vice President, Expedia Media Solutions, shares the best practices in using Internet partners to promote your destination, including online travel agencies and social media and mobile devices.

“Creative Adventures to Make Yours a Perfect Destination for a Group” Melinda Hughey covers what works in the group-tour industry–and what doesn’t. She discusses what it takes to make your destination a successful stop on group-tour itineraries.

Don’t forget Missouri Golf Day, Sept. 11, at The Deuce at the National, in Parkville.

Details are released as they become known. Check this link often for particulars, agenda, speakers and Missouri Golf Day information: Governor’s Conference Information.

For more information, contact Shari Childs: or  573-522-5953.