SCHEDULE & ​​CLASS DESCRIPTIONS

Sunday, February 27

2pm – 4pm: Check-In/Registration/Sponsor Set-up
- Clarence Brown Conference Center

2pm– 4pm: 
Tour the newly opened Savoy Automobile Museum  - Tour on your own any time after registration.  The newest    addition to Georgia Museums, Inc. is 65,000 feet of immersion into the beauty behind the love affair with cars.  Savoy is just 1.4 miles east of the Clarence Brown Conference Center.

4pm – 5pm: 
Opening Session at the Savoy - Convene in the museum theatre for an insightful presentation on the economics of auto enthusiasm.  Our presenters represent two of the largest and most prestigious automobile events in the Southeast.  They are Brian Murphy, Chattanooga CVB, Chattanooga Motorcar Festival, and Gil Langley and Mariela Murphy, Amelia Island CVB, of the Amelia Concours d’Elegance.  Gil Langley is the President & CEO of the Amelia Island CVB.  Before joining the CVB, Mariela Murphy wasNational Events Manager at Porsche Club of America and now serves as the CVB’s Director of Special Events.

6pm – 9pm: Continuous Shuttle from Hotel to Downtown Restaurants 

                                                      Stop 1:  Drowned Valley Brewery (homebase)
                                                      Stop 2:   Mellow Mushroom & Sriracha Thai
                                                      Stop 3:  Jeffersons & Main Street Coastal (100 Plates Locals Love)

8pm – 11pm: Hospitality Room at Hotel


Monday, February 28


7:30am – 9am: Continental Breakfast & Registration
– Clarence Brown Conference Center
Location: Lobby

9am:   Opening Session with Atlanta Eats host Steak Shapiro -
One of the most respected business leaders and compelling media personalities in the Southeast.  He is recognized as a highly successful entrepreneur after starting two visionary, dynamic media companies – Big League Broadcasting and currently, Bread N Butter Content Studio/Atlanta Eats. His on-air success and accolades are significant–he hosted the premier sports talk radio show in Atlanta for nearly 25 years and is the current creator/host of the Emmy-Award winning Atlanta Eats.  His other on-air projects include lead roles on Food Network shows “Food Truck Face-Off” and “Best Thing I Ever Ate”, as well as two decades of guest commentator roles on CNN, Fox News, MSNBC, Fox Business, Headline News, etc. Steak also boasts a loyal and robust social media audience that follows his dining, sports and travel exploits.  

Location: Carter Hall

10:15am – 10:30am: Break   

10:30am - 11:30am:    Breakout Session 1

A. Better Strategy Starts with Better Data: How to Become a Data Informed Organization -  Jacquelyn M. Blackwell, TMP, Advance Travel and Tourism - 
Data is great, but do you know what it all really means? Improve your marketing strategy with the right sets of information. We’ll take a deep dive into different types of data you can use to better your understanding of your audience and success of your campaign. With real world examples from southeast DMOs, Attractions, and Lodging partners, we’ll teach you how to impress your stakeholders and improve your marketing efforts with tangible and insightful data. Be ready to share your data sets in this interactive session with our experts.
Location:
Stilesboro I

Download Presentation Here

B. The Great Come Back of Georgia’s Restaurant Industry – Karen I. Bremer CAE, Executive Director of the Georgia Restaurant Association. 
Travel the road Georgia’s Restaurant Industry has taken toward COVID Recovery and see how it has changed.  Learn new insights on the vital role your restaurants play in your tourism product.
Location: Stilesboro II

Download Presentation Here

C. Learn how to capture that powerful, attention-grabbing, WOW shot and get the most out of your New, Current and Archival Photography – Brent Templeton, photographer, designer and tourism professional.
 You don’t have to be a professional photographer in order to get great shots, but you do need to know, understand and even anticipate where you need to be to get that incredible shot needed to market your area or attraction. Also in this session Brent will demonstrate how your images change when you use them in different mediums. Learn how to make brilliantly colored images from drab photographs. You will also learn that there may be a whole lot more to your old black and white images than you think. If you have a lot of historical images that you think are unusable, think again. Brent will take you through a simple revitalization process that will show you how much more detail is in your pictures than you realized. You will learn how easy it is to rid yourself of unwanted people and other objects that are infringing upon an otherwise beautiful image. In addition, you will learn how you can put a still life image in motion and grab the interest of more viewers across social media platforms. Brent’s intent is that you will leave his session saying, “This one session was worth everything it cost to be here."
Location: Stilesboro I​II

11:45am – 1pm:  Lunch with Keynote Speaker – Mark Jaronski, Deputy Commissioner Explore Georgia –
The new and improved 2022 Explore Georgia!

1:15pm – 2:15pm: Breakout Session II

A.  The Ever-Changing World of Google - Thomas Schaefer, Director of Interactive Technology at 365° Total Marketing
Veteran digital marketing guru Thomas Schaefer will help us take a look behind Google's curtain  to see what exactly is changing, why it is changing, and how we can keep up. He will update us on the changes at Google that affect your website’s search engine rankings, and what you can do to optimize your site. 

Thomas Shaefer holds several Google certifications and has more than 10 years of experience in digital marketing and search engine optimization. He has been 365° Total Marketing’s Director of Interactive Technology since 2014.  365° Total Marketing is a Google Partner.
Location: Stilesboro I​

B. "Show Me the Money!" - Finding Funding Opportunities on the National, State and Local Levels – Tracie Sanchez, Georgia Department of Community Affairs, Valerie Gilreath, Bartow County Government Grant Writing Department, Annika Woodruff, Appalachian Regional Commission – Georgia, and Tina Lilly, Georgia Council for the Arts.   Moderator:  Tracie Sanchez, Georgia Department of Community Affairs. 
Not a “How To” grant writing session, these professionals with share how to (1) Find out what grant opportunities are new or pending;  (2) Determine if an identified grant opportunity is a good fit for your dream project, and (3) Find a professional grant writer if that’s not in your skill set or you simply don’t have the time; (4) Learn about Georgia’s and the Appalachian Regional Commission’s commitment to funding projects to enhance natural, cultural, and historic resources; support downtown development, and encourage entrepreneurship in the tourism industry; (5) Learn about sources of arts funding and how these resources can create tourist destinations, invigorate communities, pull groups of people together, and provide an economic boost to communities.

Valerie Gilreath has spent twenty years turning big ideas into reality in Bartow County. The roughly $50 million dollars secured during her tenure as the Director of Grant Writing for Bartow County Government has built trails, parks, roads, buildings, and other infrastructure, as well as enhanced public safety and economic development. She is adept at understanding needs, synthesizing ideas, and communicating both succinctly. Valerie holds a Master of Fine Arts and an undergraduate degree from Georgia State University.

Tracie Sanchez is a Community Services Representative at the Georgia Department of Community Affairs.

Location: Stilesboro I​I

Download Show Me the Money Presentation 1 Here

Download Show Me the Money Presentation 2 Here

C. Creating Meaningful Video Content and Innovative Ways to Use it - Media Veteran Jennifer Grove Camacho will host a new workshop on creating content that moves people to action and how to use it to supplement your PR efforts.  
You'll learn:     
- Basic tools for visual storytelling, including low-cost equipment options to help elevate your videos;
- Shooting and editing using your computer and phone, including simple hacks to create content with the tools you already have at your fingertips;
-Mining for content, including ways to avoid “reinventing the wheel” by repurposing photos and videos you might be overlooking; and
Zoom-ing in on what works, spice up your communications through the COVID-era platform of choice, Zoom, and other media applications of the new press release. 

Jennifer Grove Camacho is a 2019 Atlanta Business Chronicle 40 under 40 awardee and LEAD Atlanta graduate, She has spent a decade working in small-, medium-, and large-market television.

Location: Stilesboro I​II

2:15pm – 2:30pm:           Break

2:30pm – 3:30pm:            Breakout Session III

A. 2022 Georgia Legislative Session Update - Jay Markwalter, GA Association of Convention & Visitor Bureaus Executive Director
Location: 
Stilesboro I​

B. Should Podcasts be in Your Marketing Toolkit?  Jacob Southerland, Director BG Podcast Group, a Division of BG Ad Group, Marietta, GA.
Explore the exploding markets for podcasts and how the “Audio Magazine” influences its followers.  You’ll learn how listeners find you, how to engage them and keep them tuning to you.  And, of course, the ever-necessary methods of tracking how your podcasts are performing. Tune in!
Location: Stilesboro I​I

C. Group Travel Has Survived!  Get the Vitals One of Our Most Important Markets – Tonja Ray-Smith, Southeast Tourism Society Marketing & Communications Manager, and Veteran operator Elizabeth Tidwell, Leisure Time Charters & Tours
Yes, times have changed but with change come opportunity.  Never has this been more true in the Group Travel Industry.

Tonja Ray-Smith, Southeast Tourism Society Marketing & Communications Manager is also a 30-year veteran operator of Brenda Tidwell, Leisure Time Charters & Tours
Location: Stilesboro I​II

3:30pm – 4pm:                  Wrap Up & Door Prizes – Stay for a chance to win dozens of door prizes from across Northwest Georgia!