The International Travel Bloggers & Media Conference (ITBMC) in Kathmandu, was the second day of The Himalayan Travel Mart 2018, held on 2nd June, 2018 in Kathmandu, at the Soaltee Crowne Plaza Kathmandu.It was a platform for travel bloggers to network, learn and meet travel experts from Nepal. It was also to understand the challenges that Nepal faces in marketing its tourist products and sustainably scaling up tourism to the stated goal of Five Million Visitors in 2030.
Some of the presentations at the ITBMC were very good. There was a lot of learning and sharing of information, as well as discussions on the role of bloggers as influencers.
The list of speakers included:
- Tim Leffel, travel writer, author of Travel Writing 2.0, and publisher
- Mariellen Ward, Travel writer and female solo travel advocate
- Nischal Dua, Entrepreneur, growth marketer and mountaineer
- Keith Jenkins, CEO & Founder of iambassador
- Matt Gibson, CEO, Upthink and former PTBA president
Travel writer, Tim Leffel’s presentation on “Building a brand based on storytelling” was fantastic. He introduced us to the Periodic Table of Storytelling.
He also gave us tips for travel storytelling and showed us this creative and award-winning example of how to tell a good travel story, called “The Man At The End Of The World.” Brilliant stuff!
Mariellen Ward’s presentation, “My Journey to becoming a Mindful Traveller,” was thought-provoking as she talked about eco-tourism and responsible tourism.
Nischal Dua’s presentation, “Digital Nomads – Travel and Work as a Lifestyle” offered tips to Nepal’s travel experts on how to transform their country into a haven for digital nomads who love mountains more than beaches.
Keith Jenkins’ presentation, “How influencers can show value to industry” offered valuable tips to help travel bloggers work better with the tourism industry providers.
He also provided examples of successful travel influencer campaigns.
Adding a bit of glamour to the proceedings was Nepal’s very own Miss Universe, Nagma Shrestha, who showed us how Nepal’s beauty queens are promoting the cause of tourism.
The evening after the ITBMC, we were invited to a gala dinner accompanied by lively Nepali folk dances at Hotel Annapurna, Kathmandu.
Since I was leaving for home the next day, I said my goodbyes to the friends I had made during my visit to Nepal and promised to keep in touch. Goodbye, Nepal. I hope to see you again at the HTM 2019.