Date

3-2015

Degree Name

BS in Recreation, Parks, and Tourism Administration

Department

Recreation, Parks, and Tourism Administration Department

Advisor(s)

Susan Mackenzie

Abstract

In recent years the United States has seen a growing trend in rural travel, which has increased the awareness of rural destinations. However, in order to compete with larger destinations, rural destinations must market themselves through various online outlets. The purpose of this study was to examine the web based marketing practices of five selected rural tourism destinations in the Western United States. The destinations studied were: Tonopah, Nevada; Ajo, Arizona; Creede, Colorado; Taos, New Mexico; and Marfa, Texas. These destinations were analyzed through an examination of destination websites and social media accounts. The results showed that in order to market to the technologically savvy tourists, rural destinations should utilize social media platforms more effectively and update the destination websites on a regular basis.

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