Technology & Innovation

Tap Into Savannah Tourism Project Progressing

Category: Technology & Innovation

The “Tap Into Savannah” kiosk program, a joint project of the Savannah Convention & Visitors Bureau (CVB) and Blue Focus Media, to bring state-of-the-art and environmentally friendly touch-screen kiosks to Savannah, is progressing well, according to Joe Marinelli, CVB president.
The 42-inch touch screen TAP (Tourist Assistance Portals) kiosks, which are ADA accessible and made their debut on time in early July at five locations around the city, provide a myriad of tourism information.  The program is designed to generate revenue through ad sales.
Five of the six units purchased so far are on the streets and functioning very wekk, according to Marinelli.  They are located at the CVB’s MLK Visitors Center, at the River Street Visitors Center, in City Market, at the Trade Center and at the I-95 Visitors Center.
In the month of July, the five units generated 25,207 “taps,” said Marinelli, though the information is very preliminary, and three of the units did not go into service until July 15.  Each visitor is projected to “tap” a number of times – how  many on average is not yet known.
“I don’t have any answers for that yet; we’re just beginning to extract some of the data out of it, such as busiest days of the week, etc.”  he explained.
“The TAPs are designed to provide the best visitor experience possible,” said Marinelli. “The Savannah TAP kiosks will do just that. They are a user-friendly way for a guest to find exactly what they are looking for. The time is right for this type of enhancement to the Savannah experience.”
In addition to a calendar of current events, welcome message from Savannah Mayor Otis Johnson and specially-designed “e-brochures,” advertisers on the TAP will feature area attractions, restaurants, hotels, retail options and maps of the Historic District, area parking facilities and the city’s free transportation system.
Advertisers on the TAP are able to present hours of operation, daily specials and menus, photos of their products and streaming video. Visitors will have the ability to have information sent directly their cell phones by entering the number into the TAP which will then text walking or driving directions to their destination.
“Every aspect of the Savannah TAP kiosks is produced locally,” said Ken Elwood co-owner of Blue Focus Media. “It was also important to us and the Savannah CVB that the kiosks stay ‘green’ instead of providing information via a paper printout, information can be sent directly to a visitor’s cell phone.”
The CVB has put more than $ 50,000 into the project, including for the units and development of the software, and is actually an owner of the venture with Blue Focus.

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