Nicole Mahoney

Episode 100: Celebrating One Hundred Episodes, with Nicole Mahoney

podcast photo thumbnail



Nicole Mahoney is the host for the Destination on the Left podcast. She is also the CEO of Break The Ice Media, the travel and tourism marketing agency she founded in 2009. Break The Ice Media specializes in working for clients in the travel and tourism industries, through the strategic use of public relations, social media, digital advertising, tourism marketing campaigns, influencer marketing, and video marketing.

Nicole got her start in the business world while attending college when she worked for her father at her family’s car stereo shop. After college, Nicole began working in sports marketing at Frontier Field in Rochester, New York, as the Executive Director of the Lilac Festival. She went on to run promotions for the Canandaigua, New York Business Improvement District and worked on projects for the tourism promotion agency Visit Rochester. With over 20 years of experience in the tourism marketing field, Nicole has truly dedicated herself to the travel and tourism industries throughout her career journey.

On this special 100th episode of Destination on the Left, Nicole discusses why she created the show, building upon the spark of an idea she had all the way back in 2013 while she served as the co-host of an internet radio show. She reflects on Destination on the Left’s past episodes, diverse topics, even more diverse guests, and how the show has evolved over time.  She also looks to the future, with exciting plans for the next 100 episodes!

What You Will Learn:

  • Learn the history of the Destination on the Left podcast, and why Nicole believes it is important to give leaders in the travel and tourism industry a platform to showcase their ideas and successes.
  • Listen as Nicole reflects upon the journey she and Destination on the Left have taken from the show’s beginning, through one hundred episodes of informative conversation with guests from all over the world.
  • Learn what it took to bring Destination on the Left to life, from finding the right podcasting partner firm to designing a logo and website, to eventually being hosted on 33 different platforms such as iTunes and Google Play and even Amazon Alexa.
  • Nicole shares key milestones from the last two years and one hundred episodes, highlighting the wonderfully diverse and informative topics she has discussed with her guests.
  • Nicole expresses her deep appreciation for the support of her listeners and shares the wonderful feedback and reviews she has received.

What is Destination on the Left?

Nicole Mahoney wanted to create a platform to give professionals in the travel and tourism industry a chance to talk about their most creative ideas and share their stories of success. Tourism isn’t recognized as an “official” industry by the federal government, and too often the business leaders and professionals in the field aren’t treated as the industry leaders they are.

That’s why Nicole created Destination on the Left. Through showcasing successful business executives and bright ideas from the world of tourism, Nicole hopes to shine a light on how critical and impactful the travel and tourism industries can be, empowering and strengthening communities all over the world.

100 Episodes Later…

Join Nicole as she reflects on one hundred episodes full of amazing guests from all over the country and the world. That’s not to mention the incredibly diverse topics they’ve discussed; topics including regional marketing, influencer marketing, travel PR, digital marketing, grassroots efforts, food tourism, and many others.

And the future of Destination on the Left is equally as bright. This year saw the first podcast roadshow, as well as a five-part series on museums. And there’s so much more planned for the future. Listen and join in on the celebration!

Hello listeners of Destination on the Left. I am so excited to talk with you today because this is our 100th episode! This milestone would not be possible without our great guests who have been free with sharing their knowledge and experience and without our wonderful listeners who provide us with encouragement and lots of feedback to keep us motivated to continue on this path. To celebrate this milestone, I thought I would spend this episode reflecting on the last 100 and sharing the journey from my perspective with all of you who have helped make this happen.

We launched “Destination on the Left,” in October 2016. The vision for the podcast was to focus on destination marketing by exploring successful collaborations, creative marketing ideas and best practices. We wanted to provide an opportunity for professionals in the travel & tourism industry to share what they have learned and successes that they have achieved.

The podcast was born out of my desire to showcase the true business of tourism. It is something I had been thinking about for quite some time. The federal government doesn’t recognize tourism as an official industry, many local and state governments struggle to understand the true impact of the industry and my friends and colleagues in the industry were often treated like step-children when it came to getting their fair share of the pie.  The spark of the idea began in 2013 when I co-hosted an internet radio show with Bruce Peters on WCEO Hour and invited tourism leaders on as my guests. I convinced Bruce that tourism leaders were important business leaders and needed a platform for sharing their ideas. Bruce obliged, and we had Carol Eaton from Visit Syracuse and Don Jeffries from Visit Rochester on the show. The conversation was fun and informative and from that point on, I wanted a platform for continuing to showcase business leaders in the tourism industry.

Fast forward to the first quarter of 2016, when I was interviewed on Onward Nation, a podcast that focuses on how top business owners think, act and achieve. The experience inspired me to dig out that idea from 2013 and use the podcast as a platform for sharing stories of success from the tourism industry.

With the help of Predictive ROI, a marketing agency specializing in podcast production, planning for my own podcast began in June 2016. This included establishing interview questions, designing a logo and website, creating a scheduling protocol, testing technology and working on a social media strategy. With all of the groundwork laid, we launched our first episode with Dan Fenton from JLL consultants as the first guest.

Since that first episode aired, we have had guests on from all over the world including Germany, India, Canada, UK and Ireland. We have enjoyed conversations with guests from New York State where we are based to Oregon to California and many others. We have interviewed professionals from DMO’s, museums and attractions to PR firms and ad agencies specializing in the tourism industry to tour operators to national travel association leaders. We have covered topics on regional marketing, influencer marketing, travel trade marketing, Travel PR, digital marketing, programmatic buying, grassroots efforts, food tourism, research and trends and so much more. It is amazing to think about all of the topics we have covered and the beautiful library of shared knowledge that lives in the first one hundred episodes.

After 100 episodes, we are now listened to in 53 countries are available on 33 platforms including itunes, stitcher, google play and even on Alexa – Hey Alexa – play Destination on the Left.” We even won a Prism award from the Rochester PRSA chapter earlier this year.

Another fun element that was unexpected is the addition of our Podcast Roadshow this year. We attended the Museum Association of NYS annual conference in Rochester, I interviewed attendees from all over New York State representing all types of museums and cultural institutions for this podcast. The conversations were enlightening and inspiring and provided new perspective on this important segment of the tourism industry. Many themes stood out during these conversations related to museum marketing. These included how museums and cultural institutions are working to build community, reaching audiences beyond their local markets and creating new programming and events that enhance the visitor experience. From this collection of interviews we launched a 5 part series focused on museums. We hope to do more roadshows in the coming year. If you have an idea for an event that we should attend please let me know.

The ratings and reviews that you have left as listeners of the show are very much appreciated. It has been very gratifying to read how we are making an impact. I want to share a few with you:

★★★★★5 out of 5 stars.


  • 4 months ago

For any tourism pro!

This podcast is a must-listen for any tourism professional looking to glean insights from some of the top people in the industry. The emphasis on collaboration should provide listeners plenty of inspiration to help expand and improve their own efforts!

★★★★★★★★★★5 out of 5 stars.


  • 5 months ago

All of them

Informative, exciting, people passionate about their jobs and sharing their adventures. You are in tourism, this is the one pod cast you have to listen too every week! Keep our amazing world coming at us, thanks Nicole

★★★★★★★★★★5 out of 5 stars.


  • 6 months ago

Really insightful and informative

As a volunteer in a leadership position at a museum, and hence a non-professional novice, I found Destination on the Left a great source of education in how to think about cultivating audiences and being relevant.

Keep the ratings and reviews coming, it helps other people find us through their favorite distribution service. Please feel free to reach out to me at anytime with ideas for show topics, guest suggestions or feedback on how we can make this show better. You can email me at I am looking forward to our next 100 episodes and you will be an important part of the journey to the next milestone. Thank you for listening and we will be back next week with another fantastic guest!

We value your thoughts and feedback and would love to hear from you. Leave us a review on your favorite streaming platform to let us know what you want to hear more o​f. Here is a quick tutorial on how to leave us a rating and review on iTunes!

Related Podcasts