Convention and visitors bureaus -- perhaps more than 300 of them -- are increasingly using Twitter to help market their locations, and a recent study examined how they do that.

Development Counsellors International, a New York-based tourism firm, said it looked at the convention and visitors bureaus representing the nation’s 50 largest metropolitan statistical areas ("cities," more or less), determined which groups have Twitter accounts, and evaluated nearly 3,000 individual “Tweets” posted over a 30-day period by each organization.

The most effective such bureaus, according to DCI, in alphabetical order, are:

  • Baltimore Area Convention and Visitors Association
  • Greater Fort Lauderdale Convention and Visitors Bureau
  • Greater Philadelphia Tourism Marketing Corporation
  • New Orleans Metropolitan Convention and Visitors Bureau
  • San Francisco Convention and Visitors Bureau
  • Tampa Bay and Company

Of 54 travel attraction organizations that represent the largest MSAs, 12 were not found on Twitter at all, DCI said. Of the remaining 42 with Twitter accounts, three had no tweets at all, the study found.

The most popular organizations, by number of followers, were:

1. travelportland Travel Portland 7999
2. VisitChicago Chicagoland Regional Tourism Development
Office 5231
3. BaltimoreMD Baltimore Area Convention and Visitors
Association 4784
4. VisitPhilly Greater Philadelphia Tourism Marketing
Corporation 3086
5. ExpCols Greater Columbus Convention & Visitors Bureau 3079
6. PositivelyCleve Positively Cleveland Convention & Visitors Bureau 3040
7. visitmusiccity Nashville Convention & Visitors Bureau 2715
8. VisitHoustonTX Greater Houston Convention and Visitors Bureau 2642
9. choosechicago Chicago Convention & Tourism Bureau 2158
10.VisitSanAntonio San Antonio Convention & Visitors Bureau 2117

The most common types of Tweets are:

  • Announcements about upcoming local events/news - 54%
  • Social Tweets - 28%
  • Replies to followers - 20%
  • Deals (both travel and non-travel related) - 17%
  • Re-Tweets from community partners - 13%

I use twitter to market its very effective i have also built some great business relationships through it in fact all the social networks work well but twitter is the most effective of them all so far (great post)