Tag Archives: Rich Tucker

NCL Epic Video Contest – Win a Free Cruise

[tweetmeme source=”cruisesource” only_single=false “http://cruisesource.us/2010/10/22/ncl-epic-free-cruise/”%5DBack in August, I came across a fun high-quality passenger-generated video about their NCL Epic Cruise Vacation. I quickly posted the NCL Epic video below in a blog post and asked the Cruise Lines: How do we get more of this?

This is the Remix V.2 version of the original:

Norwegian Cruise Line has repeatedly shown their commitment to Social Media, so it does not surprise me that they are now experimenting with a solution on how to get more high-quality passenger generated video shared across the internet. Norwegian Cruise Line is giving away a Free Cruise for 2 for best Epic Moments Video. Details:

Winning video receives a cruise for two on Norwegian Epic

Direct from NCL Press Release:

MIAMI – October 21, 2010 – Norwegian Cruise Line announces the launch of its “Epic Moments” video contest (www.ncl.com/myepicmoment), where cruisers create short YouTube videos of their vacation on board the line’s newest and most innovative ship Norwegian Epic for a chance to win a Caribbean cruise for two in a balcony stateroom on board the ship.

Cruisers can enter by uploading their vacation videos to YouTube as a video response to the contest overview video by Julie Valeriote, Norwegian Epic’s entertainment director. Every two weeks for the next nine weeks, Norwegian will choose which video is the Epic Moment Semi-Finalist for that period. In mid-February, the 10 semi-finalists will be featured on Norwegian’s YouTube channel and http://www.ncl.com and the public will have a chance to vote for their favorite Epic Moment. The video with the most number of thumbs-up on YouTube will win a seven-day Caribbean cruise for two in a balcony stateroom on Norwegian Epic.

“Freestyle Cruising gives our guests incredible freedom and flexibility on board our ships to enjoy their cruise vacation on their own terms,” said Kevin Sheehan, Norwegian Cruise Line chief executive officer. “Our newest ship, Norwegian Epic, takes Freestyle Cruising to the next level giving countless opportunities for couples, families and solo travelers alike to indulge in vacation moments of a lifetime. We look forward to seeing them come to life through our Epic Moments video contest.”

The first of 10 semi-finalist videos will be chosen on or around November 8, 2010 and will follow with nine more semi-finalists being announced every two weeks. To submit an Epic Moment video, head to www.ncl.com/myepicmoment.

I doubt I am eligible to win…. but I’m still going to go post my video now. ~ Rich Tucker

Full Disclosure: CruiseDeals.com and the other Travel Leader Leisure Group brands are proud to be top sellers of NCL Cruises.

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#Cruise24 Social Media Experiment

On Monday, August 2nd, 2010 I will be on Twitter with my @cruisesource account for 24 straight hours to see how many people I can talk to about cruising.   From 11AM ET on August 2nd – 11AMET on August 3rd, I will only communicate using Twitter and the CruiseSource.us Blog from my home office in Indian Trail, NC.  I’ve never done anything for 24 hours straight, so this should be pretty interesting!  I will be tracking several statistics from this experiment and I will share all of them in about a week.  The Hashtag for this Social Media Experiment is #Cruise24.   During the experiment, I’m also attempting to get 100 people to donate $24 to the Airline Ambassadors, one of our non-profit partners for the Cruise4Haiti.   We’re giving away a big prize, details below.

Why?  Twitter has been life changing for me over the last 2 years.  Recently though, I’ve been a little down on Twitter because it doesn’t seem to be as conversational as it was back when I was originally drawn to it.  Today, I find that it is not uncommon to send people @ replies and not get a response.   Is part of the problem that I’ve gotten busier or is it that there are too many people on Twitter not really listening?  I will find out, because I am not allowing anything to interupt my Twitter conversation for 24 hours.
 

Prizes:  One donor will win an International roundtrip Ticket from American Airlines.    So for a Tax-Deductable donation of $24, you will have the chance to win an airline ticket for anywhere in the world!  There is a $50 activation fee, and there are some restrictions on the ticket.   You want to donate a prize? You better act fast!  Leave a comment or @ reply @cruisesource on Twitter

* the drawing for the ticket won’t be held until there are at least 100 donors for $24 each
* the airline ticket won’t be available for a few weeks, so you will not be able to use it for a last minute Summer vacation

So if you have any cruise related questions, today is a great day to ask it.  If you’re looking to book a cruise, let’s take care of it today on Twitter.  Just send @cruisesource a Tweet. 

I’d also like to thank my employer, Travel Leaders Leisure Group & CruiseDeals.com for allowing me to spend 2 days on a Twitter experiment. – Happy Sailing & Tweeting ~ Rich Tucker

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Filed under Cruise4Haiti, Social Media

NCL Epic and Social Media

In a short period of time, cruising and social media is proving out to be a perfect match just as I was quoted last year in the Miami Herald:

On Cruisesource.us, Rich Tucker, business development specialist at Cruisedeals.com in Charlotte, N.C., writes: “Cruising and social media are like peanut butter and chocolate. Two tastes that taste great together.”

Read more: http://www.miamiherald.com/2009/11/12/1330897_p2/wave-of-social-media-precedes.html#ixzz0sHNrLOCl

Cruise vacations are a natural source of rich content. The new ships being built today like the NCL Epic are architectural masterpieces loaded with innovative technology and design. 2 years ago, I was almost the only blogger taking advantage of Inaugural Cruises to get content for the CruiseSource and flickr pages. The times have changed. Over the next few weeks, the internet will be flooded with video, pictures, and reviews of the brand new NCL Epic. To get an idea of all the high quality NCL Epic content being created by travel pros and media check out the CruiseDeals.com dedicated NCL Epic site a growing collection of the best NCL Epic videos, photos, and articles from across the internet.

My two passions are social media and cruising; I try to combine them when at all possible:
I will be in Miami in time for the NCL Welcome Party at Bicentennial Park in Miami FL. We’re hosting a NCL Epic Bon Voyage Happy Hour Tweetup with our friends @24K & @VegasBill to network with the South Florida social media and technology community as well as all of the media and travel professionals coming to Miami to attend the NCL Epic 2 day inaugural event.

Imagine all the pictures, video, and status updates created from cruise vacations:
Each week 100+ cruise ships take thousands of passengers to beautiful destinations where each one of them are taking tons of pictures and video. An extremely high percentage of them come home very pleased with their once-in-life-time experience want to share it with friends and family.

Content is only one reason why Cruising and Social Media are like peanut butter and chocolate:

Using Social Media, to stay connected after the cruise:
Cruises are the most social form of vacationing. From the moment you get on a cruise ship, you are sharing your vacation experience with 1000 – 4000 other passengers from start to finish. You meet other passengers in the casino, at the shows, in the discos, on shore excursions, Surfing on the Flowrider, on the grass lawn, etc. It is not rare for cruise passengers to make lifelong friends while on cruise vacations. Some even choose to cruise together on future vacations. The high adoption rate of social media application like Facebook and Twitter makes it fairly effortless to stay in touch with new friends. All of these new cruising friends will lead to larger group vacations.

Why the cruise industry has so much to gain from Social Media:

Almost 75% of the US has yet to go on a cruise vacation. Many have not tried cruising because of objections like being confined on a small cruise ship, not enough to do while on board, or other misconceptions. Some others have long standing traditions when it comes to vacations, like always going to a local beach for a week. When 25% of the population goes on cruises and post pictures and videos from their cruise vacations, their friends will ask questions and become more interested in trying out cruising. People do not trust advertising, but they trust their friends. In order for the cruise lines to take full advantage of social media, they will need to significantly reduce the cost of the Wi-Fi onboard the ships. If I was the cruise lines, I’d look at the passengers using Wi-Fi as advertising and price it at the break-even point. Or make Facebook and other social apps free of charge while on the ship.

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Celebrity Solstice: St. Maarten & St. Kitts

Celebrity Solstice, St. Maarten:

A few hours ago we set sail from St. Maarten headed back to Ft. Lauderdale. Luckily, we were the only ship calling on St. Maarten today. Yesterday they were 4 cruise ships docked in St. Maarten. St. Maarten a great inexpensive port for beach lovers and window shoppers. A $6 per person water taxi transported us from the ship to the beach and the Phillipsburg downtown shopping area. For $10 we got 2 lounge chairs, an umbrella, and 2 beers. Dylan got to play on his first white sand beach and splash around in the clear blue ocean. After a few hours on the beach, we hit the shops.
Today, the beach, the taxis and the shopping was not crowded at all. It is probably the complete opposite when there are 4 ships docked in St. Martin at the same time. If you are booking a cruise going to St. Martin, ask your agent to check out how many ships are in St. Martin when you will be there… just something to consider when looking at different options for your next cruise.

Water Trampoline St. Maarten

St. Kitts

Yesterday we visited the Island of St. Kitts. The people of St. Kitts were some of the friendliest I have met in the Caribbean. Not once were we asked to get our hair braided or asked to buy something while we were relaxing on the beach. One of the local guys who rented beach chairs played soccer and cricket on the beach with the tourist kids. We chose to go to Frigate Bay because it was on the Caribbean side of the Island which means that the seas are calm and the water crystal clear. Frigate Bay was not crowded or touristy. There were several bar shacks on the beach. The sand at Frigate Bay was not the pretty white sand and according to one local bartender was the reason that the beach did not get over crowded.
One of the Solstice Black Jack Dealers did recommend the Marriot Resort beach. The Marriot on St. Kitts is a huge property with Golf Course, Casino, impressive pools, and public beaches. The only reason we did not go was because the Marriot resort is on the Atlantic side of the Island. Both the Marriot Beach and Frigate Bay Beach are only a $4 per person taxi ride. Many more pictures and video coming when we get back home!

Apologize about the quality of the video, we only had our Sony Cybershot camera at the beach with us:

Soccer on the Beach with a St. Kitts Local

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Celebrity Solstice, Day 1 at Sea

We are on the Celebrity Solstice for Easter Week. Thanks to a last minute cancellation, we are in a Sky Suite… by far the best cabin I’ve ever stayed in on a cruise ship. I’ve always wanted a rear facing balcony, and we finally have one. This is my son, Dylan’s first cruise. It was also his first flight, first taxi ride, and first time on a moving sidewalk. He’s had a blast and with this being Easter week he made plenty of friends today. I love going on cruises with people who have never been on one before, and going with an 8 year old has definitely added to the experience.

Our 1st day at sea is almost complete and here are some of the video and pics from today!

Dylan Boarding the Celebrity Solstice

@CruiseDeals Celebrity Solstice

Earth & Dylan

Earth & Dylan

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Week Recap: WSJ, Twitterview, My Brother Walks

My Best Week Evar? Probably not… the week my daughter was born was pretty special. The Cruise to Italy on the Inaugural sailing of the Costa Deliziosa rocked… and I am pretty sure there are some others that rank up there. Life isn’t always roses! As a former Quizno’s Franchise owner/operator, I’ve had my share of miserable weeks too… especially the ones where our store was broken into (the one where they knew the code to the safe was the worst). Luckily those days are way behind me!

As a Cruise Geek who loves Social Media, this week was pretty awesome. I was Twitterviewed by @nclandy, Andy Stuart EVP of Global Sales for Norwegian Cruise Line. A twitterview is a public, open interview live on Twitter in which the audience can participate. I was quoted this week in the mecca of business print, the Wall Street Journal about cruise pricing trends this summer. @93octane (Lyell Petersen) and I hosted a South by Southwest Q&A at our local Business Tweetup, #btynbiz. @ericfraz, writer for the Charlotte Observer, wrote a quick article about the Q&A session. The best part of the Tweetup was meeting several local business people joining us to learn more to start their journey into using Social Media to strengthen current relationships and to generate new business. To cap off the week, last night I came in second in the Twitter Poker Tour weekly game out 30+ entrants.

THE BEST NEWS OF THE WEEK: Mike, my younger brother, walked for the first time since his car wreck on December 17th, 2009. He first used crutches and has now walked a few steps without the crutches… he was lucky to have lived through the accident, and even luckier that his feet were not amputated due to compound fracture and . After 3 months of being in a hospital bed and wheelchair, it made my week to hear that he’s able to begin the process of strengthening his legs to be able to walk again. ~ Happy Sailing, Rich Tucker

Mike at New Year's - 2 Weeks after the Accident

Lets stay connected, be my friend on Twitter!

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CruiseSource.us representing at #SXSW

I’m flying out tomorrow, Friday March 12th to go to Austin, Texas for South by Southwest to attend sessions & panels about Interactive Media. South by Southwest is the yearly Film, Music, and Interactive Media Festival. The 1st week of the festival is focused on Interactive Media and is considered by many to be Geek Spring Break. Lyell Petersen, @93Octane on Twitter and the dot com in CruiseDeals.com, and I (@CruiseSource on Twitter) will possibly be the only 2 people representing the Cruise Industry at South by Southwest.

We’ve been leaders in trying to get ‘Cruising’ into the Social Media Conversation. Lucky for me, I love to talk about Social Media as much as Cruising! In the last couple of years, I’ve helped lead the way by being one of the first cruise industry bloggers, the first one to tweet from a cruise ship, the winner of the Shorty Award in Travel for my use of Twitter, the first to giveaway a cruise on Twitter and Facebook, and hosting the Social Fresh Cruise, the premier social media conference at sea. Now, I am excited to go learn the answer to the question: What’s Next?

@93Octane aka Lyell Petersen

@93Octane aka Lyell Petersen

Social Media is just a catalyst for face to face meetings and by attending South by Southwest, I will finally get to meet many of my long-time online friends in person . I also get to see many of my friends from Social Media Week, Shorty Awards, SoCruise, and other social media conferences in person again. I’m stoked (which is a good sign I am probably a geek)… feel free to follow along with my personal twitter account @RichTucker.

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