Mobilize a team to write, photograph, and promote the trail. Once the trail is established, your community needs to build a second wave of involvement to promote the trail and organize activities featuring the trail.
A promotion strategy might look like this.
- Tell your community’s story.
- Approach the computer businesses, consultants, high school students, and youth in your community to help with the technology and social media tools.
- Create a Google Map.
- Set up a facebook Page and report your trail’s development and milestones.
- When complete, upload the data about your community's barn quilts to this website (barnquilttrails.ca) and its Ontario map.
- Help your business sponsors improve their on-line presence by utilizing Google Plus and Google Places.
- Find a local person who enjoys writing to blog about trail news and activities.
- Make it easy for people to find the map and the stories.
On-line Google Maps are a must. Google Mapping tools are free, but require time to learn and execute.
Google Plus and Google Places. Rural businesses need help with improving their on-line presence. Providing support for Google Plus and social media training can be offered to business sponsors in exchange for cash and materials.
Paper maps are a core promotional tool but good maps are expensive. Every trail needs a paper map available locally. Local governments and tourism destination marketers should help with this aspect.
People enjoying the barn quilts want to know the significance. They are looking for an interpretative sign. Alas, barn quilts are meant to be enjoyed by the travelling public while they are driving. Work with tourism partners who can help design interpretation programs designed around social media, printed maps, brochures and intepretative maps.
- Wayfinding highway signs are expensive.
- Government road regulations make it very difficult to erect signs on the road allowance. It is not impossible but the red tape is significant.
- Get involved in your county’s signage planning.