Blogger fams are all the rage right now and I have been on my fair share of them through Man Tripping. Most of them are fantastic experiences where I get to network with fellow bloggers and social media "gurus" while producing valuable social media content for the destinations. Almost every trip that I have been on though could have made a greater impact for the destination by following these five tips.
Create a Social Media Handbook
The purpose of your social media fam trip is to create buzz and leverage the networks created by your guests to promote your DMO / CVB and the businesses of your members. By creating a Social Media handbook, it helps your guests understand unique "shareable" aspects of your region as well as the various channels that you and your membership maintain. This helps your guests tweet better during the trip, as well as create other - ongoing content to lay the groundwork for ongoing social engagement.
Engage Your Guests Before, During, and After the Trip
Unlike traditional fam trips where the goal is to invite writers to visit an area and then hopefully generate a couple articles, bloggers and social media people tend to have the ability to benefit you before, during, and after a trip. For instance, before the trip, you might consider tweeting them with things you think their readers might be interested in, "@ManTripping Check out these awesome motorcycles @wtttimemachine <photo link>" By doing this, you also benefit your member businesses and helps them engage with the bloggers as well.
After the trip, you should have a strong familiarity and a personal bond with those you just hosted. Continue the relationship by sending out periodic tweets, organizing twitter parties, sharing links of interest on their Facebook pages, etc.
Share, Like, and Tweet The Blog Posts
Assuming that they had a good time and generated high quality content, you should absolutely promote their content through your channels - including Facebook profiles and Facebook pages, as well as twitter. This will help increase the bond you have hopefully created with the blogger during the trip, but also it benefits you and your members by increasing the reach of the writers you just hosted.
Ask Other Bloggers Who They Recommend
It's hard to tell who will benefit your trip - raw page views and twitter following don't mean anything if the person has a history of not getting along with others or has other issues. Most bloggers and social media people are open to sharing information about their friends. If you aren't sure where to start but you have a couple friends you trust, ask them for advice. Ultimately, this is how social networks are built - by asking questions.
Create a Social Network
A Social Media Fam Trip is more than just hosting a bunch of writers. It is about creating relationships - for you, for your members, and for your guests. By looking at it in these terms, you will be able to organize a fantastic trip that will create a lasting impact that grows beyond just the people you invite - but also their friends too.
BONUS TIP: Electricity and Internet Is Essential
This may seem obvious, but you might want to consider having an AC adapter for the car with you and making sure that the accommodations have excellent Internet capabilities. You might even consider having some extension cords or powerstrips with you in the car so people can charge phones, laptops etc. if you stop somewhere with only a couple plugs available.