Once a year, hundreds of tourism industry professionals gather in sunny Arizona to connect, learn and be inspired. With hundreds of hours of educational sessions, three motivational keynote speakers and unprecedented networking opportunities, the Simpleview Summit draws DMO professionals from all over the country, and across the world. This year marked the 14th year, and with 710 delegates and sponsors representing 316 unique organizations, 107 sessions and 48 guest speakers, the 2019 Summit was our biggest event yet! For the first time ever, the event was hosted in the heart of downtown Phoenix, at the Sheraton Grand, from May 19-22.
Attendees had the option to join us in Phoenix a few days early to take part in pre-conference activities, including informational training sessions and certification tests. For those looking to get out explore the desert, we also offered activities like horseback riding, foodie tours and panoramic paddling.
Attendees began checking in to take part in pre-conference trainings and activities.
We kicked off day one with a toast to the next three days, followed by our first keynote speaker. David Rendall returned to the Summit stage once again, this time to impress upon attendees the importance of embracing the things that make their destination different.
“Every characteristic is a strength and a weakness at the same time... Your flaws are what make you awesome.” - David Rendall
David Rendall, author of The Freak Factor, delivering the opening keynote of the 2019 Simpleview Summit.
We ended the night with our opening reception, a block party at The Churchill PHX, giving attendees a small sample of what Phoenix has to offer, with food and drinks from local businesses.
Simpleview CEO Ryan George and VP of Marketing Cara Frank enjoying a moment with Jeff Duncan, President and COO of Meetingmax at the opening reception.
Our very own Ryan George kicked off day two with his informative keynote on all things Simpleview. From recent acquisitions to notable new hires, Ryan’s message was clear: passionate people produce quality work.
"Being trustworthy, being reliable and being data-driven are some of our key values. But none of them matter without passion." -Ryan George, CEO, Simpleview
Simpleview CEO Ryan George delivers the Tuesday morning keynote.
After that, our attendees dived into their first full day of sessions. From content marketing to data visualizations and smartphone photography techniques, there was something for everyone. This big news of the day came from the “CRM What’s New” session, where after more than a year of development and hundreds of hours of user group testing, the new Simpleview Destination Management System was unveiled.
— Stephanie D Molina (@Beaumartian) May 21, 2019
We started the final day of Summit off strong with a thought-provoking keynote from Rohit Bhargava, who’s highly actionable talk encouraged attendees to think outside of the box, particularly when it came to marketing their destinations.
“The key to being different is embracing non-obvious thinking.” - Rohit Bhargava
Rohit Bhargava, founder of the Non-Obvious Company, delivering the final keynote of the 2019 Simpleview Summit.
The second day of sessions offered just as many topics and new ideas as the first, with discussions on digital marketing, website design, data privacy and more. One of the many highlights of the day was the CRM Quiz Show, in which attendees were tested on their knowledge of the Simpleview CRM. The winner would be awarded the title of “Grand Master” and would take home not only bragging rights, but also the Grand Master title belt. It was a close match, but in the end, Anabella Gonzalez Coenen from Visit Omaha emerged victorious.
Anabella Gonzalez Coenen from Visit Omaha was the big winner of the CRM Quiz Show.
And the fun wasn’t over yet! Attendees had one last chance to mingle with our sponsors during the Pre-Closing Party Happy hour, where they were surprised by a ‘90s-themed flash mob! After wowing the crowd with their killer dance moves, the dancers led the way to this year’s closing party at the Talking Stick Resort Arena: The MixTape Tour featuring New Kids On The Block, Salt-N-Pepa, Naughty by Nature and even more ‘90s throwback artists!
Attendees were surprised by a flash mob during the Pre-Closing Party Happy Hour.
— Tim Moore #AR #VR (@TimMooreTech) May 23, 2019
Be sure to check out the #SVSummit19 hashtag on Twitter and Instagram for an even deeper look at this year’s Summit, and stay tuned for announcements about next year!