Representatives of the two companies outlined the opportunities and how they plan to grab them for roughly 1,200 attendees at the Mountain Travel Symposium on Wednesday in Snowmass Village. Both companies' strategies rely, to some extent, on mining data from their users. Erik Hawkins, Facebook's industry manager for travel, claimed that the social-media site is “an underappreciated source of travel bookings” and one the travel industry should tap to a greater degree. Facebook users, he said, are ripe to be “relying on the wisdom of our friends to make choices.” He advised the audience — which included representatives of everything from skiing companies to tourist accommodations to recreational firms — to use Facebook to connect with special audiences. “When Facebook first started, it was really a mad rush to get friends,” Hawkins said. “What we've discovered is it's not how many friends you have but who your friends are.” Companies don't want to “junk up” their Facebook pages with casual friends; they want to connect with their best customers, Hawkins said. The company can help them accomplish the goal. “There are mechanisms now on Facebook where you know who your best customers are and you can find them on Facebook and make them your friends,” he said. Get the full story at the Summit Daily