Auburn Tourism Board launches new website

Doug Lein. Reporter file photo

Typically, tourism boards do their thing without a lot of fanfare.

But Auburn’s Economic Development Director, Doug Lein, expects more than a few eyeballs to start pointing in the direction of the Auburn Tourism Board’s new website, launched last Friday.

Just tap out exploreauburn.com to see for yourself.

There you’ll find short videos and thumbnails about activities, fun things to do in the area, a robust calendar of events, subcategories and maps teeming with news about Auburn.

And info on all the hotels to stay in, restaurants to dine at, stores to shop.

Whatever the would-be visitor wants, Lein said, he or she will find it within two clicks.

For instance, there are 624 hotel rooms available in Auburn today, and with three more slated for completion next year, the tourist will have 945 hotels rooms from which to choose.

“With the higher hotel bed count we’ll have a better shot at going out and selling conventions,” Lein said. “The intent is that we go after the two-night, three-night stay, not just the one-night-salesman stay. … This (website) is going to give us the capability of really, really focusing … and working with other partners, so we can have one central branding of the message.”

Lein described other strong points of the website.

“Our new website was built in a way that we are able to maintain it as we change (events) on a daily basis. … As staff, we don’t have to put it out on a contract, we can do it internally,” Lein said.

Also, the tourism coordinator can analyze parts of the website that attract the most visitors and where the visitors come from.

Councilman Bill Peloza offered the sole complaint at Monday’s study session at City Hall.

“I’m surprised that you don’t feature the Auburn International Farmers Market as a tourism attraction,” said Peloza, the market’s chief supporter on the City Council from its beginning.

As Lein explained, the videos currently on the website were shot in April, when the market was closed, and those videos will be updated.