This is the age old question that has been out there for years. I remember printing T-shirts with my dad when I was about 10 with this quote on the back that he sold to gift shops. The funny thing is, people are still asking the same question – “Where the Hell is Belize?”
I guess we still are ‘Nature’s Best Kept Secret” like the Belize Tourism Board’s (BTB) marketing strategy said a couple years ago. But why are people still asking and don’t know yet? Well for the most part, Belize has a very small marketing budget to advertise abroad. Only in recent years has the BTB amped up its international marketing and we have seen a positive turn out from their most popular campaigns.
Celebrity visits and network shows have helped tremendously in putting Belize in the international scope. Destination Belize is yet to be fully exploited. But we cannot rely on the BTB alone to make it happen for Belize. It is up to all of us to do our part in promoting our country so that we may all reap the benefits of tourism. What we need to do is fairly simple and inexpensive.
Where do we start? The internet – it is our personal handy tool to promote Belize. I was invited by the BTB to attend a social media workshop where I learned a lot about pumping up our presence online and how social media can be a great asset to do just that.
My friends give me hell for being logged on Facebook all the time, but somebody commented to me the other day that I was his most active friend with constant comments, posts, pictures and video that kept him very interested in Belize. He looks forward for my posts and those of Ambergris Today.
This is just it; we need to be more active online and Facebook is the perfect medium for this. If we are not interacting in person, we are doing it on Facebook. It’s a great social engine to promote our business and share information from our websites. And something else is that we need to put more content on our websites, share more pictures, post more stories and reach out to potential visitors.
I see many businesses in San Pedro, and around country, just put up websites and abandon it on other host websites that contain old pictures and outdated information. They are not utilizing the potential of the internet to sell themselves and Belize to potential customers. Get creative, there are many ways to sell your business and sell Belize. Are you one of those businesses?
Those attending the workshop were also in agreement that business in Belize need to come together and do some more networking, help each other by promoting our country in general and stop fighting for their dollar. Sell the adventure of Belize (plug in your business somewhere in between) but don’t be afraid to involve other businesses on your posts. A perfect example of this is when Crave Restaurant and Mathieu’s Delicatessen came together and promoted guest Chef Gunter at Crave. The turnout was fantastic during slow season. Both restaurants gained tremendously from it.
Talk about our people, our fantastic attractions and share personal experiences that will lure people to Belize. The more we do this the better the chances of marketing our country abroad and helping the BTB; more for you and me when they start flocking in. Yeah! Do this on your website and spread the work with one or more of the hundreds of social media outlets. It’s not that complicated.
Ambergris Today Plug: I have to say that Ambergris Today is proud of having jumped in the digital media headstrong and is one of the first media outlets in Belize to embrace everything digital. It’s the future and we are making sure we are selling the Belizean product as we work on informing our readers and potential visitors about what is going on in our Beautiful Country.
What are you waiting for? Contact us if you need help and would like to take advantage of our services. Let’s all work together to make Belize prosper.
Sunset casts beautiful colors on eastern clouds
A lazy stroll up a pier is what San Pedro is all about
Waterfall and cave system in Toledo District, Belize
Pelican take flight
Fisherman casts seige net
The rainbow ends in the true pot of gold - San Pedro, Belize