NYC & Company is missing an opportunity to shine by leading the way to smarter social engagement for tourism marketing organizations. It could be among the first to turn streams into live information chats rather than static PR pushes.
Why is NYC & Company not a leader in social tourism promotion?
It has eleven tourism-related Twitter accounts, but doesn’t openly discuss its social strategies or engage with visitors on a large scale.
The city’s official tourism marketing organization uses Twitter to promote events including restaurant week, the CitiBike launch, sports events, and museum openings. Of the eleven Twitter accounts dedicated to promoting travel to the Big Apple, nine target visitors from individual countries.
The @nycgo account has more than 86,000 followers and sends out an average of 5.1 tweets a day. The @nycgo_press has a significantly lower following (3,517) and half the tweet volume at 2.7 daily tweets.
NYC & Company’s country-specific Twitter accounts have fewer than 2,000 followers and are slightly less active than the main account, tweeting between 0 and 3.5 times a day.
|Twitter Account||Twitter Followers||Daily Tweet Rate||Tweets in 2 weeks||Replies in 2 weeks||Retweets in 2 weeks|
In general, destination marketing organizations are less engaged than airlines and airports on social media. NYC & Company follows this trend.
The accounts primarily serve as a megaphone for sending out updates and links on NYC events. Accounts occasionally retweet news or photos, but rarely reply to followers.
In a two-week period, @nycgo replied to only two tweets.
NYC & Company also refuses to be social about any of its social media strategies. The organization has twice declined to share any insight into how many people run the accounts, how the accounts are managed, or the specific goals of its social media presence.
Most recently, Caroline Peck, Communications Coordinator at NYC & Company, told Skift, “The social media accounts are important tools for our international offices and the strategy is proprietary information.”
Each of NYC & Company’s country-specific accounts tweets in the local language. The Twitter accounts could serve as a vital information tool for foreign visitors, but currently highlight the largest events happening at a certain time.
The Twitter accounts do incorporate NYC & Company’s outer-borough tourism push. Below @nycgo_es encourages Spaniards to visit Nathan’s Famous hot dog stand on Coney Island, @nycgo_it tells Italians about The Noguchi Museum on Long Island, and @nycgo_au gives Australians a reason to go to Brooklyn.
— NYC & Company (@nycgo_es) June 11, 2013
— NYC & Company (@nycgo_it) May 3, 2013
— NYC & Company (@nycgo_au) May 28, 2013
As mentioned, they also point out the biggest events to check out in NYC at any point in time. Below @nycgo_fr explains CitiBike to the French, @nycgo_ca tells Canadians about sporting events, and @nycgo_nl promotes the World Science Festival.
— NYC & Company (@nycgo_fr) June 5, 2013
See why NYC is a sport city! June’s calendar of sporting events http://t.co/2BUobiAzfK
— NYC & Company (@nycgo_ca) May 31, 2013
— NYC & Company (@nycgo_nl) May 30, 2013
Having country-specific accounts isn’t necessarily a bad idea, but what NYC & Co demonstrates through it’s marketing-heavy conversation — likely programmed far in advance — is that New York is adept at one-way conversations in eleven markets.
Photo credit: New York's iconic Flatiron Building on the southwest corner of Madison Park. Dan Nguyen