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Digital DNA tourism conference will bring experts from Google and Twitter to Belfast

Published 10/11/2015

John McGrillen; Tourism NI and Kathryn Pyper; Engaged Web with Gareth Quinn; Digital DNA launching the Tourism Digital DNA event taking place at Titanic Belfast 12th November 2015. Picture: Elaine Hill
John McGrillen; Tourism NI and Kathryn Pyper; Engaged Web with Gareth Quinn; Digital DNA launching the Tourism Digital DNA event taking place at Titanic Belfast 12th November 2015. Picture: Elaine Hill

An event aimed at raising the profile of Northern Ireland’s tourism industry around the world, organised by Digital DNA and Tourism NI, takes place in Belfast this week.

Digital Tourism, which takes place in Titanic Belfast on Thursday, November 12, will see a host of speakers from some of the world’s leading travel, tourism and hospitality organisations come to Belfast to inspire Northern Ireland’s local businesses to embrace technology for growth.

Speakers include experts from Google, Expedia, Yotel, Hospitality Ulster and, who will host main stage key notes and deliver workshops aimed at helping local businesses increase their profile among tourists around the globe.

The event, hosted in conjunction with Tourism NI and sponsored by leading UK & Ireland digital agency Engage, is the latest technology event from the team at Digital DNA. Digital Tourism follows October’s Digital Business event which saw over 500 delegates visit Belfast to learn how to embrace technology for growth from experts at Facebook, Google and more.

Digital DNA founder Gareth Quinn said: “Digital Tourism’s sole aim is to help hospitality businesses across Northern Ireland to grow by embracing technology, increasing their profile online and bringing more tourists into our towns and cities from around the world.

“We want to drive as much wealth into Northern Ireland as possible and the tourism event is one of the ways in which we’re doing that, increasing knowledge and sharing best practice from some of the world’s top businesses. It’s fantastic that Tourism NI, who share our goals and ambitions, are partnering with us for the event and I’m looking forward to welcoming all the speakers and delegates.”

Event partner and key note speaker, Tourism NI Chief Executive John McGrillen, added: “Event partner and keynote speaker Tourism NI Chief Executive John McGrillen said: “There is a seismic shift going on in travel and tourism that involves a move from traditional marketing mediums to digital and social media platforms. While Tourism Northern Ireland has grasped this shift and is working to be a fully digitally enabled organisation itself, it is my view that the entire industry's ability to capitalise on this change will be absolutely vital to its future success.

“The technological challenges of the tourism industry are often unique when compared with other businesses, so we are always keen to support a dedicated tourism initiative, and especially one that is part of the range of events the Digital DNA team is delivering in 2015.

“Leading from the front with technology, embracing technology to create better experiences for our visitors, and using technology to improve the marketing of our destination will be crucial for Northern Ireland tourism in the coming years, and as we strive to meet the targets for the industry for 2020.”

The first round of speakers confirmed for the event include:

John McGrillen – Chief Executive of Tourism NI        

Stephen Murphy - Agency Lead for Tourism at Google

Sean Collins - Head of CRM Operations - Europe at

Fergus Boyd – Vice President of Digital – Yotel

John Bustard - UU

David Tutin - Senior SEO Specialist at Expedia

Carolyn Boyd - Industry Development Manager, Tourism Northern Ireland

Michelle Lee - Director of Marketing and Customer Experience

James Hanna - Delivering Innovative Travel Solutions at Oli

Ricky Martin - Owner of Alive Surf School and Co-Founder of Skunkworks

Eleanor McGillie - Director of Live it, Experience it

Francis Hood - Owner, Sion Stables

Colin Neill - CEO, Hospitality Ulster

To buy tickets visit DigitalDNA

Online Editors

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