Thursday, October 14, 2010

Can social media work for biking event promotion? Yes!

It is great to have the chance to speak to this group about how they can use new social media tools to promote biking events. Have you attended any recent outdoor or sporting event including biking where they organizers used social media to build the community and promote before, during, and after the event? Tweet me @wendysoucie and I would like to interview the organizer as a case study before the National Bike Tour Directors Conference.

A Gathering of Wisconsin Bicycle Tour Organizers: Wrap Up

Saturday October 9th broke clear and warm – a harbinger of great things to come for the first Gathering of Wisconsin Bicycle Tour Directors and Organizers, hosted by Bike Wisconsin® at Madison Area Technical College in Madison.  Over twenty attendees and five illuminating presenters made for a fun and informative conference.

Long Time bicycle advocate and member of the cycling community, Richard Schwinn, wowed the audience with a lively perspective on customer service and the biking industry. Mr. Schwinn spoke about early cycling advocacy organizations (The League of American Wheelmen, Bicycle Institute of America) and the issues they had promoting their mission. He mentioned that in the 1960′s a major bicycle builder (Huffy) actually referred to the bicycle as a toy. Changes in the industry and the rise in popularity of cycle racing – due in large part to Lance Armstrong – propelled cycling ahead through the 90′s. Organizations, like the re-visioned League of American Cyclists and Bikes Belong, began to unite vendors, builders, and distributors and eventually with public entities to develop safer cycling infrastructure. Mr. Schwinn organizes a couple smaller cycling events, but he firmly believes that other well run events are the key to increasing ridership across the board. Improved customer service makes business better for everyone. He also believes that good communication (before and during the event) have increased customer satisfaction. He feels that a Wisconsin Bicycle Touring organization could elevate state tours even higher. If a prospective biker sees that a tour is run by a member of that dependable organization, they will be drawn to it.


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