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Travis Stanley
Jan 04, 2022
In ASTC Sutainable Reports
Please read over our 4th quarter report and join the discussion. Thank you Travis Stanley President Appalachia Sustainable Tourism Collaboration
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Travis Stanley
Dec 17, 2021
In 2021 & 2022 Sponsors
Rural Appalachian Improvement League, Inc
RAILWV content media
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Travis Stanley
Dec 17, 2021
In 2021 & 2022 Sponsors
West Virginia Business Link content media
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Travis Stanley
Oct 01, 2021
In ASTC Sutainable Reports
ASTC 3rd Quarter Report. 2021 Even though ASTC is an LLC, we are not in competition with others. Our legal structure does not require us to be transparent with stakeholders, but our value innovation prevents us from hiding information from others. ASTC becomes stronger when stakeholders better understand the atmospherics, and economic development potential of tourism, particularly nature based tourism in our 5 state service areas. Our primary objective for 2021 is to network and develop our brand while making our 3 websites more robust, ASTC Home. Appalachiastc.com Touring Events & Activities. astctour.com Stakeholders astcstakeholder.com Press Release None. Overview The first major focus for this quarter was overhauling the stakeholder site. We are glad to finally create a format that will grow and help others over time. Another major focus was to look for revenue streams to support this social enterprise. After reaching out to numerous stakeholders and getting only a response from one (The city of Norton), we decided to make some radical changes to the social enterprise. We believe we are so far out in front with our solutions to market failures that it would take years for other stakeholders to catch up. Please see this blog. On September 6th, the 3 sites finally hit a point where the foundation is stable. The idea is to passively let the social enterprise diffuse into the region and focus on core areas such as, Policy Formation Outfitters Travel Specialists or Travel Agents Tourism Consulting Just as in the 1st and 2nd quarter, we have learned much about our 5 state service area. Current Events Kentucky Wildlands to promote southern and eastern Kentucky as tourist destinations Looking ahead, Nazario explained that the next phase of The Kentucky Wildlands initiative will be designating the region as Kentucky’s first and only National Heritage Area. At the direction of Congress, the National Park Service is determining if the region’s natural, cultural and historic resources combine to form a cohesive, nationally important landscape. If the National Heritage Area status is achieved, then the region will receive technical assistance and federal funding through the National Park Service. St. Paul Virginia to host the annual ARC meeting in October. “St. Paul leveraged the town’s proximity to beautiful mountains and the Clinch River, one of the most biodiverse rivers in the Northern Hemisphere, to create new opportunities for outdoor recreation.” New reports make case that natural gas production boom was a bust for Appalachia, urge economic transition “We know that the Appalachian natural gas boom hasn’t just failed to deliver growth and jobs and prosperity so far. We now know that it’s structurally incapable of doing so,” Ohio River Valley Institute senior researcher Sean O’Leary contended during a webinar on the reports Tuesday. “[That] means that a lot of economic development strategies in the region need to be rethought.” W.Va. parks to spend $42 million on infrastructure improvements There will be new connecter tails that will link the Hatfield-McCoy Trails at Chief Logan and Twin Falls Resort State Parks with lodging. More than 350 cabins will also be remodeled. One_base data had a interesting find “One bright spot to highlight: Entertainment and hospitality businesses are now employing more people than before COVID-19.” Rock climbing booming in Kentucky as sport debuts in Olympics “People don't really know there's a climbing mecca tucked away in eastern Kentucky,” said Billy Simek with the Red River Gorge Climbers’ Coalition. Develop trails, ‘develop the entire region’: Counties join forces to help clear the way for adventure tourism “Develop the entire region. You know, we can’t look at county lines anymore. We’ve kind of got to go past that,” said Slone. The Remote Johnson City program offers up to $5,000 to move to Washington County. The cash value of the incentive depends on an applicant’s income level. Earthlink bringing 285 jobs to Southwest Virginia Internet provider Earthlink plans to bring 285 jobs to Southwest Virginia when it opens a $5.4 million “customer support center” in a Norton business park. Lewisburg, WV is now taking applications for their ascend program. Results were great from the town way up north (Morgantown). The class of 53 includes people from 21 states and the District of Columbia, one as far away as Berlin, Germany with the most new residents coming from California. The average wage of the class is $105,000 annually. New EarthLink facility will bring 285 jobs to Norton The company is returning its customer service operations to the United States and will build a 30,000-square-foot facility at the 200-acre Project Intersection development at the junction of U.S. 23 and U.S. Highway 58. We will continue to push the agenda that we are on the verge of a huge change in our Coal Country service areas. Smith sees West Virginia 'on the cusp of greatness' with entrepreneurship. Zoom Meetings They are the second Tuesday of each month. The 1st zoom meeting was on July 13th. No one was present. The 2nd zoom meeting was on Aug 10th. No one was present. The 3rd zoom meeting was cx for Sep 13th. Zoom will be cx for the next 2-5 years; however, if you want to schedule a meeting to talk or zoom, let us know. ASTC Community Service ASTC President bikes/hiked the Russell Fork Trail and reported back all of the issues that the trail has. This was reported to various stakeholders. See our flickr Outings Collection for details. New Sponsors No Sponsors were created. No interest was shown. ASTC Hall of Fame This is cx for the next 2-5 years. However, if you would like to promote a steward let us know and we will help. Financial Supports No financial support was given. New ASTC Contributors None. New ASTC Interns Internship Program. No Interns. No interest shown. This is cx for the next 2-5 years. New ASTC Volunteers Volunteer Program. No Volunteers. No interest shown. This is cx for the next 2-5 years. Community Stewards None recommended to us. Community Volunteers None recommended to us. ASTC’s 5 Goals for 2021 Logo Submissions: No submissions. Click here for more details Help Facilitate a Regional Trail Crew/s: Back in the 2nd quarter we created a blog on Becoming a Trail Coordinator. There are similarities to this job/career and our 2021 Goal of a Trail Crew/s to help fill the void between small rural towns and the massive acreage on public domain land. There will be hundreds of miles of trails built that need to be looked after by future Trail Coordinators and Crew Leaders, and communities. KY has just now begun creating their own legal ATV and SxS trails in earnest. Adopt an Organization: No interest was shown here. We did make one update to the basic plan. An organization's Logo will be on each state trip planning page that applies. We also have it set up on the Stakeholder site for a Logo and a Twitter feed on our 4 landing pages. Entrepreneur Incubator: We did not have anyone reach out to us for a free consultation. We did add many twitter accounts to the List, and added a few links to the Information and Calendar page. We are now on the Business Link website under Resources! Tourism and Social Media Flickr We added this to the footer of the hand held device (phone) format, and began to follow other organizations more frequently. Linkedin Although we had created this account in early 2021, the president started to connect with some accounts and improved the ASTC page. YouTube We picked up no new Subscribers to our channel. We are currently at 9. Twitter We actually have 2 Twitter accounts. One has a list of accounts for the 65 topics on our Tourism Site, plus a few others to help with trip planning. In time that will be how we communicate with tourists who need help on the fly. The main twitter account is how we communicate to the world. We hit the 400 follower mark September 5th. Followers: We ended the quarter with about 415 followers. ASTC Blogs Major Change in ASTC's program over the next 2-5 years. Beginning in mid Sept. 2021 Entrepreneur Incubator Blogs Bridging the gap between Travel Agents and Tourists in Coal Country. Community College is Helping to Improve Outdoor Tourism Services in Coal Country Rangers to help bridge the gap between Rural Towns and Federal Public Domain Lands ASTC Forums We did not have any activity in our forums. We picked up zero online members ASTC Groups No Groups were requested to be started. Tourism Site We created a Wedding Page under the Culture category. We created a Go-Kart page, and a Transporter page. We created a Indian Country page. We only have The Eastern Cherokee Tribe on this page because we do not want it to seem like Indian Heritage is past tense, because they are are present. We worked on adding more Guides to help Connect Tourists to the region, and improve the navigation and ease of use by adding categories of activities. We never had anyone ask us to put anything on our 60+ Calendars. Twitter feeds were added to each Category page (what shows up on the menu bar). If someone Adopts an Organization their twitter feed and logo would go there. Stakeholder Site This site was completely overhauled. A brand new house, with different rooms. We gave ourselves more work, but in 2 years it will be fine. We got rid of the old categories and created 4 new categories that correspond with the name of the LLC. We then looked at our Twitter Lists and decided to make pages that corresponded to them, for example, Environmental Sustainability. We streamlined many of the pages. For example we created an Events page that will take you to all of the separate calendars. One thing we did was created pages for people to relocate to the area, such as the Public School and relocate page. A neat feature is how we have a general consulting page, and a specific consulting page for Tourism. The Higher Education, 4 year degree page was heavily worked upon for our region. We even got to do the Community College page a good work over. Environment Not having a brick and mortar office, the carbon footprint of ASTC is extremely low. We did not volunteer for any improvements to the environment. Economy ASTC should be considered a Chamber of Commerce for 112 counties. We find organizations and put their links on over 60 pages on our Tourism site. We also help entrepreneurs by offering free consultations. We added Outdoor Marketing Pros, to our Stakeholder site. This is important because we are networking and building a system to help with tourism advertising and marketing. We promoted the brand new West Virginia Business Link with various tweets. We made three Entrepreneur Blogs. Community College is Helping to Improve Outdoor Tourism Services in Coal Country Bridging the gap between Travel Agents and Tourists in Coal Country. Rangers to help bridge the gap between Rural Towns and Federal Public Domain Lands Society The work that was put in the stakeholder site (overall) was substantial. We also created many links to organizations that help with improving communities. Final Thoughts We are happy with the 3rd Quarter. We now have a 2-5 year strategic plan! Instead of creating service revenue, the President will take temporary jobs inside the general 112 country area to improve skills, learn more about the region, and network while funding the LLC. The first job is with the Southern Appalachian Wilderness Stewards. He will be on a Trail Crew on the Bald River Gorge Wilderness from Sept 7th- Nov 24th. Stay tuned for some blogs and pics before the New Year. If you need clarification or more information on a subject, please contact ASTC and we will try to help you. Travis Stanley President Appalachia Sustainable Tourism Collaboration, LLC Where Tourists Become Stakeholders.
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Travis Stanley
Jul 02, 2021
In ASTC Sutainable Reports
Please read over our 2nd Quarterly report before joining the discussion.
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Travis Stanley
Apr 23, 2021
In Blogs
Please read over the blog before joining the discussion below. Thank you. Travis Stanley
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Travis Stanley
Apr 21, 2021
In Blogs
Please read this blog before joining the discussion on this topic. Thank you Travis Stanley President Appalachia Sustainable Tourism Collaboration, LLC
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Travis Stanley
Apr 14, 2021
In Blogs
Hello. After reading the blog on this subject, please use this post for questions and discussion. Thank you, Travis Stanley
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Travis Stanley
Mar 20, 2021
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Travis Stanley
Mar 13, 2021
In Blogs
Please read over the Appalachian Restoration Project Blog before joining the discussion. Thank you. Travis Stanley
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Travis Stanley
Mar 05, 2021
In Blogs
Please read over our ASTC Blog on this subject before joining the discussion below. Thank you. Travis Stanley
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Travis Stanley
Feb 28, 2021
In Blogs
Please read over the blog before joining the discussion. Thank you. Travis Stanley
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Travis Stanley
Feb 25, 2021
In Blogs
After reading the below, please respond to help ASTC understand what you believe encapsulates the Tourism Experience. Thank you! One of ASTC’s goals for 2021 is to become an Entrepreneur Incubator. Our concentration is on helping organizations into the tourism industry. This blog will go through ASTC’s 4 phases that encapsulates the tourism experience. Initial Impressions. Onboarding. Rendering Services. Tourists to Stakeholders. Any organization (private or public) can use these principles. Also, this can work for Volunteers, Interns, Policy formation meetings, Clients, Customers, and more. We highly recommend Entrepreneurs to build these 4 phases into their model if they specialize in experiences and human dimensions. Please take note how there is less information presented as the phases progress. Initial Impressions This phase more often than not begins on the internet. ASTC recommends getting a website. It’s the best value you can have. You can build them with wix and other platforms for little costs. Network with an Entrepreneur to build you one. Get a reduced rate by allowing the builder to advertise themselves at the footer of each page, thus creating more focus and drive on their end. Going the FB route is a minimalist approach. ASTC predicts more organizations will continue to shy away from this medium over the next 20 year. Whatever platform you take, you must exhaust all of its resources. What is Critical with your website? Tell the world about your organization. Have a mission and vision. Tell your market about your model. Have robust bios of your staff to help create an early connection. Have a Twitter account/s, and monitor the accounts daily. @ASTC_LLC @astctour 5. Let your clients know of other ways to support or meet you. For example, have a calendar for when you will be out in the field. 6. Walk the site weekly with a flashlight. A dead link is a yellow flag that your organization is working at unsatisfactory levels in all departments. 7. Navigation. The viewer must find what they are looking for within 30 seconds. Phone calls. Phone communication has become incredibly flexible due to cell phones. However, there are work life balance questions for you to consider. What is Critical? Be kind, courteous, and create a conversation on the phone. You’re not selling a loaf of bread, you are potentially selling an experience of a lifetime. The experience really begins when the tourist discovers that you are motivated to serve them. If your organization has wording like “call us anytime,” then you must deliver, or your model starts to erode. An online booking system, a questionnaire form, or a well made pre-recording will help you start off on the right foot if you decide not to make time to answer your organization’s number 7 days a week. In Person The heart of tourism is hospitality. When a client stops by a nation wide car parts store in their community they have spent close to zero dollars and very little time preparing for the commute when they walk through the door. The expectations are low for customer service. However, when a tourist travels from the other side of the world and they reach their first destination the expectations are high. Sometimes very high. They have spent days planning the trip, and maybe even days to arrive. What is Critical? 1. Assume that everyone you meet is a weary traveler who needs a warm smile with a sincere greeting, and directions to the restroom. Basically, treat them like family. 2. Have appropriate staff for the first impressions. Always assume that the further the tourists travels, the higher their expectations will be. Onboarding ASTC has a saying. “Never turn away someone who cares.” If your organization can’t take 1 step backward to onboard a volunteer or a potential client that will produce 1 step forward, then your organizational model is suboptimal at best. If you turn down someone who cares, you may lose them forever. This may seem odd for a for-profit, but it happens often with nonprofits. If your potential client would like an appointment, make it so. Getting lazy and telling them your lobby hours over the phone forces them to restart the onboarding process all over again. Create an appointment with you or the best person who can serve them. You have to spend money to make money, or be efficient with your budget, or make your organization run at optimal levels, it’s all the same. What is critical? 1. Try and learn as much about your clients before they arrive. It shows that they are important to you. Once again an online form will help you learn more about your potential client or volunteer. This will allow you to have a better understanding before you talk to them in person. 2. Have enough information available at the ready to prevent any constraints and give your clients confidence that they are making the right choice for their needs. However, do not present too much information because it may overwhelm. 3 If your model hits a saturation point with volunteers and clients do not demarket or ignore emails or phone calls, but instead have passive onboarding. Point people in the right direction by putting your website to work. If you have links to other organizations you will have two parties that appreciate your time and effort. Rendering Services You nailed the first impressions and your client is motivated and confident after experiencing your onboarding process. Services are in the process of being rendered. You might even have access to their credit card information! What is Critical? Have the appropriate attention to detail as the experience progresses. If your Guide is not ready for the mission to take care of your guest, then you must realize that you are only as strong as your weakest link. You may need to spend money recruiting the best staff possible to help the tourism experience in this phase and beyond. 2. Have as many back up plans as possible. If your guests see that you have exhausted your resources they will appreciate your commitment to them. 3. Interpretative Skills. Here you explain and translate your culture so that the tourist will be more informed and educated. Also, the tourists are given an opportunity to provide feedback in order for both parties to connect and learn from each other. This enrichment of the tourism experience will help transform tourists into stakeholders. Tourists into Stakeholders The people you interacted with to help deliver a week-long vacation of a lifetime, or an hour long rest stop break have the potential to travel back to their communities and become stakeholders in yours! There are customer surveys, thank you cards/calls, well kept social media accounts, and opportunities to meet in the field on a community service project to name a few. You can even show them how your model operates so that they can invest further into your organization. What is Critical? Caring about people is critical. Help them with their next tourist experience. More importantly help them with becoming a stakeholder in your neck of the woods. You do not need to be charismatic, you just have to care. Remember, never turn away someone who cares.
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Travis Stanley
Feb 16, 2021
In Blogs
Hello, Please use this post to discuss the blog found here. Thank You. Travis Stanley
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Travis Stanley
Jan 19, 2021
In Blogs
Hello, Please use this post to discuss ASTC's first press release blog. Please provide feedback. Thank you. Travis Stanley
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Travis Stanley
Jan 19, 2021
In News and Trends
Hello, Please use this sub-forum to post government grant opportunities here. We will link it to our Government Grant Calendar on the stakeholder site.
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Travis Stanley
Jan 18, 2021
In Policy
Hello, Please use this sub-forum to list dates and times of policy formation meetings. Please contain as much information as possible. We will try and post it on our policy formation meetings calendar. Thank you. Travis Stanley
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Travis Stanley
Jan 16, 2021
In Events
Hello, We tried to use the same type of format that YouTube has, but we can't populate our albums with photos. We have two options. Invite the picture to our group, so that we can put it in a album... hopefully. download a picture to a computer and then upload it to the correct album. We did this once, see below. As of the Winter of 2021, the flickr index page is closed because it is not ready for trip planners to view. Please help us by joining our group and sharing photos with us. Please consider that we have 56 albums to pick from, and we may not decide to use your picture if it does not fit. The best thing we have produced is this example, which is found in Culture (History/Museums). We put down a link so that Tourists can quickly begin to learn more. Here is our Tourism Activities page for reference for the type of material we are looking for. We are exited about the potential with flickr. People like pictures better than videos. However, unlike YouTube, the ability to gain access to the pictures is much much slower. Thank you for reading. Travis Stanley
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Travis Stanley
Jan 14, 2021
In Events
Hello. We need your help in finding good channels and videos for our YouTube page. Please post a channel or video here. Please review the entire video and be sure it is safe to watch for a someone over 14 years old. Also, please be sure that the username is tactful. After the video has been posted on the ASTC channel, the post on this thread will be deleted. __ Market Trends? I noticed that some really good organizations do not have YouTube Channels. It's also surprising how poorly managed the channels are. Many do not even have the About section complete. I'm surprised that many great videos have very little views. There is much potential with YouTube. A channel can have 200 playlists, and 5,000 videos a playlists. This adds up to thousands and thousands of hours of content! TN has a really great channel that focuses on Tourism. It is out of Nashville. TN Crossroads. "Description Since 1987, Tennessee Crossroads has traveled the highways and byways of Tennessee, highlighting the personalities, crafts, places, foods and events that make Tennessee special and its character unique. A product of Nashville Public Television. www.wnpt.org" Their videos are elegant. 9.2 million views since 2009.
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Travis Stanley
Jan 12, 2021
In Tourism General
Hello, ASTC creates information on this site at no charge. We do not want to restrict information, because we want tourists and stakeholders to be more informed. There are several ways to get information on ASTC. Father time. ASTC will focus on the Distressed Counties and Regions of the Appalachian Regional Commission, and then move onto the At-Risk Counties, and go from there. Pay. You can Adopt an Organization for 12 months. Pay some more. For 6 months or 12 months the organization will have more exposure. Reach out and network with ASTC. If you strong arm us into a community service project, then we will be compelled to write a blog or take ownership in the success of the project. Note: We will put up just about anything that looks presentable on the Twitter Tourism Info Index. Some Twitter accounts are both kind of information for local citizens and kind of information for tourists. If it's close, the page will be in our index. T On our social media feed we use Flickr, Daily Motion, Twitter, Pineterest, RSS Feed, Vimeo, YouTube, and Tumblr. These are only open for the Adopt an Organization Premium plan. Keep in mind, For most of 2021, there will be only one person who puts in information on the main site (Travis Stanley). Travis must also read several online newspapers a week, study the 80+county service area, volunteer, generate blogs, study tourism trends, go to meetings, help entrepreneurs, go on trips and generate social media content, and take care of Organizations that have been sponsored. Depending upon how sales revenue goes, an employee of some sort, possibly a Chief Executive Officer will help with the above duties and get more information on the site faster. Please ask any questions that you may have. Thanks for reading. Travis Stanley
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Travis Stanley

Travis Stanley

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