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Travel Exchange is designed for business, but you can also find your next solution or big idea here! Watch this page for updated information about topics and speakers. Expect to see some familiar faces of highly rated presenters as well as a batch of new experts who’ll be riding into Reno for TREX ’22. And of course, you can count on peer-led sessions for member network forums.


How to TREX: Expand Your Network (While You Laugh)
Speaker: Brad Montgomery
Nov. 13 | 3:45 – 4:45 p.m.

If you hate networking events, this session is for you. Maybe you’re an introvert who prefers one-on-one conversations, or you might be who’d rather work the room than connect with the people who matter to your business. Sound like you? Relax … It sounds like all of us. In this eye-opening, entertaining program, Brad Montgomery (who is a very funny fellow) will demonstrate easily learnable skills you’ll use throughout the conference—and at every BBQ for the rest of your life—that will help you connect quickly, easily, and naturally to others. And best of all, he’ll make you laugh while you’re there.  Come ready to laugh. Know that you’ll leave with a new appreciation for how focusing on helping others get what they want removes the awkwardness, grows your network, and makes this conference more successful (and fun).

Embrace Your Awesomeness: It’s All About the People
Speaker: Brad Montgomery
Nov. 14 | 8:45 – 9:45 a.m.

Knowing that our people are our most valuable asset isn’t enough. We need to fully understand how to empower and inspire them. Brad uses humor, stories, music, and other tools to illustrate ways to improve our ability to meaningfully encourage others. Discover ways to achieve untapped productivity and accuracy while creating and sustaining positivity, optimism, and meaningfulness in others. Focusing on the people side of business not only improves the bottom line, it can also be enormously satisfying, inspiring, and sometimes very funny.

Selling from a Position of POWER
Speaker: Larry Mersereau
Nov. 14 | 1:30 – 2:30 p.m.

Whether you’re responsible for hiring and developing your sales team—or you are your sales team—this session gives you exactly what to look for and develop if you want to grow your 2023 sales. You’ll learn the five traits of a sales superstar. With each trait we’ll look at sales specifics that apply whether you’re selling B2B, to tour directors, or direct to consumers. Also in this session, you’ll work on your own unique differentiation points —points you’ll use in your sales conversations to stand out from the crowd of competing options. Get your team and yourself organized for the coming year.

Legal Topics for Tour Directors
Speaker: Jeff Ment, The Jeff Ment Law Group
Nov. 14 | 1:30 – 2:30 p.m.
Nov. 15 | 10 – 11 a.m.

Jeff, with three decades of experience in all facets of the travel and tourism industry, will cover the topics you need to understand, including independent contractor status, forming your own business, and dealing with calamities while on tour. Information that seems dry on a page will come to life in Jeff’s session.

Suppliers, You Know Tour Operators Can’t Live Without You!
Speaker: Jeff Ment, The Jeff Ment Law Group
Nov. 14 | 4:30 – 5:30 p.m.

You have to manage the balance of making money, pleasing operators, and keeping your staff happy, and Jeff is here to help. As an attorney who specializes in travel and tourism—and with real-world work experience in the field—Jeff can give answers, examples, and a clear path forward!

STAND OUT Personal Branding
Speaker: Larry Mersereau
Nov. 14 | 4:30 – 5:30 p.m.
Nov. 15 | 8:45 – 9:45 a.m.

You’ve got a good handle on the nuts and bolts of tour management. Now let’s talk about managing the persona and presence you project, and using it to position yourself for both professional and personal success. In this session, you’ll identify your personal brand attributes—the things that people are going to notice and remember about you. You’ll learn how to showcase your positive qualities while keeping the “not-as-positive” traits under wraps. This isn’t about being fake or phony. It’s about managing your presence so people remember you and look forward to the next opportunity to work with you.

Build a Powerful Cross-promotion ‘Marketing Layer Cake’
Speaker: Sheila Scarborough, Tourism Currents
Nov. 15 | 10- 11 a.m.

If you want to get the word out about your hotel, restaurant, attraction, etc. as a tour supplierespecially online and through social mediait’s hard to do it alone. Learn to build a cross-promotion “marketing layer cake” to give you the best chance to catch people’s attention in a busy and fragmented world. Cross-promotion also makes you a more effective and preferred tourism partner, raising the profile of your entire destination.

Oopsism: Communicating Effectively Across Cultures in the 21st Century
Speaker: Dr. Terry Nelson, University of Alaska Anchorage
Nov. 15 | 1:45 – 2:45 p.m.

“Why do you sound white?”“You’re an old-timer, you wouldn’t understand.” … “That’s so gay.” … ” What are you?” Oops! Have you ever wished you could grab the words that just escaped from your mouth? During this interactive workshop, participants will discuss how unintentional remarks shaped by stereotypes are deemed as subtle “isms” (sexism, racism, elitism, ageism, homophobism, etc.) rather than miscommunication or misconception. But are they? Or could they be the result of honest, unintentional misinterpretations that occur in day-to-day communications? 

Tell Your Story Your Way: How to Run a Successful CVB or DMO Blog
Speaker: Sheila Scarborough, Tourism Currents
Nov. 15 | 3- 4 p.m.

This session provides everythingsoup to nutson blogging for tourism marketing, from creating great posts to getting people to find and read them. Learn from an experienced blogger who’s been publishing online since early 2006 and is still successful today.

What Would You Do? How to Handle the Unexpected on the Road
Speaker: Mikall Buetler, ITMI
Nov. 15 | 4:15 – 5:15 p.m.

Come and share your expertise, problem solving solutions, tips, tricks, and trusted methods for handling the unexpected situations we face on the road. During this interactive session, we will brainstorm and solve typical pitfalls and difficulties. We’ll also take suggested situations from the audience. If you want to workshop a situation, bring it to us and let the braintrust give you the solutions!

Help Me Get More Out of LinkedIn
Speaker: Sheila Scarborough, Tourism Currents
Nov. 16 | 8:30 – 9:30 a.m.

Too many people ignore this powerful social business platform until they need work and change their LinkedIn bio to, “Looking for new opportunities.” But an active personal profile and a strong-brand LinkedIn Page are your keys to long-term success. Let’s talk about how to do it.

Horseshoes, Hiking, and Hi-Tech: Marketing a Diverse Region
Speaker: Kate Cox, Explore Cochise County
Nov. 16 | 9:45 – 10:45 a.m.

Engaging and benefitting multiple, diverse communities under one DMO can feel like herding cats! In this session, we’ll explore strategies to enhance the unique program within each community in your destination, all while advancing overarching regional tourism goals. 

Culinary Destination Marketing in Uncertain Times
Speaker: Erik Wolf, World Food Travel Association
Nov. 16 | 9:45 – 10:45 a.m.

As if the pandemic were not enough, consumers and trade alike have been battered from every angle: inflation, supply chain shocks, threats of new pandemics, week-long luggage delays at airports … the list seems endless. For destination marketers, tour guides, and tour operators, it might seem like it’s time to throw in the towel. But most destinations have a secret weapon: your culinary culture. And it can be leveraged to generate revenue in spite of all the adversity. Attend this session and we’ll show you how to leverage your area’s culinary culture for your own benefit.

How to Get Serious About Your Integrity
Speaker: Bret Simmons, Ph.D, University of Nevada, Reno
Nov. 16 | 11 a.m. – Noon

Integrity matters now more than ever. Let’s be clear on what integrity is, what it isn’t, and what we need to do on a daily basis if we are serious about improving our integrity.

Meaningful Travel and the Tourism Cares Meaningful Travel Map
Speaker: John Sutherland, Tourism Cares
Nov. 16 | 3 – 4 p.m.

This session will explore meaningful travel, its demand, what it looks like around the world, and how DMOs, suppliers, and other travel professionals can get involved so that we can diffuse the economic benefits of tourism and support the future of the industry.

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