Build Your Rural Tourism Regional Flavor Network Online

by Joanne Steele on November 9, 2010

In rural tourism and small town tourism marketing, we know that regional marketing works and is vitally important.

Men with pitchforksBut it’s hard to get it done! Your town and the neighboring town have been high school football rivals for a century!  Your town is in big trouble with the town 20 minutes away for having your annual event on the same weekend last year. How can you get past all this to talk about collaboration!?!

Together, you are a natural destination, but getting everyone on the same page to create a Regional Flavor Network might take into the next century, and your town is on the skids right now!

How do you create a Regional Flavor Network when communities aren’t ready to play together?

You start with the rural business community and you build the regional flavor network online.

If you’re a motivated business owner, you find businesses to collaborate with in other towns and get started. If you’re an economic development organization, start your Regional Flavor Network by inviting individual businesses to work together.

The towns will rally behind a successful effort, when they might not be able to start the process of creating the network.

Use the internet to link and market your Regional Flavor Network

Here are several examples of successful regional efforts.

Check out a total country effort here: New Zealand Creative Tourism

Here’s one in Sligo, Ireland: Made in Sligo.

The Natchez Trace Wine Trail, Tennessee US. This one is interesting because it was started by the folks at the little Grinder’s Switch Winery and is now marketed by the Tennessee State Tourism website! That’s what can happen to you too.

Check out the Circle Farm Tours near Vancouver, BC Canada. Learn how these tours grew with the work of a few dedicated people in this previous post: Would a Farm Tour Help Your Rural Community?

Here’s a link to the post that will get you to all the posts I’ve written about regional flavor. Regional Flavor Strategies For Rural Area Tourism Development

Are you tired of hearing about regional flavor strategies?

Better let me know because it’s so important and valuable to rural regions, I’ll probably keep picking away it it until enough people shout, “WE GET IT ALREADY!!” (Then, I’ll probably write a post about YOU as an example of a place that GETS the importance of a regional flavor strategy.) Is there no end???

Photo by Mike Licht at

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