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It's been a season of rebranding throughout Nevada, as city and tourism board officials have hired PR companies to create new slogans for them and their municipalities. Or more accurately, it's been a season of attempted rebranding, as the contracted firms came back with one hilariously bad proposal after another. The city of Sparks and the Reno-Sparks Convention and Visitors Authority both had to reject new slogans after $100,000 efforts. Even Las Vegas was having problems, until they finally decided to dump their new slogans and go back to to "What Happens Here Stays Here."
Naturally the tourism boards and ad firms have undertaken a full review of these failures. They're taking fresh looks at their selection criteria, their talent evaluations, and their overall approach to PR. By which we mean they're blaming Nevada's citizens for being so gosh darn judgmental:
Tourism Advertising / Tourism Boards / Tourism Marketing / Travel Ads / Wisconsin Travel / → All Tags
WTF, yo? Poor Wisconsin; their tourism board obviously doesn't employ any youngsters who are familiar with the hip, internet lingo of the day. Perhaps they should have run their name by an intern first? The "Wisconsin Tourism Federation," or WTF, is a little late to realize that their own acronym is also a popular abbreviation for "what the f*ck."
So instead of continue on the path to permanent jokedom, the WTF sat down and decided to give in to the web change their name to the Tourism Federation of Wisconsin, or TFW. CNET has the scoop on their reasoning: "'We didn't want it to detract from our mission,' said Julia Hertel, a spokeswoman for the newly renamed TFW."
Aw, isn't that cute? But you see, what they didn't count on and probably still haven't realized the value of, is all this publicity. Now, thanks to their slip-up and unfortunate association with a cussing internet slang term, the
WTF TFW is known outside of Milwaukee. The jury is still out on whether or not this incident will attract tourists to the dairy state.
· WTF? Bloggers cause Wisconsin Tourism Federation to change name [CNET]
· Wisconsin Travel [Jaunted]
[Photo: WTF or is it TFW?]
The good folks at the Panama Investor Blog are befuddled as to why the country has settled on "Panama - It Will Never Leave You" as their new tourism slogan. Great question! They attempt to work out the meaning behind the slogan-change:
I have caught wind of the new slogan they will be using to promote tourism in Panama and it is not so good... 'Panama - It Will Never Leave You.' Unlike your friends, your girlfriend or your spouse, Panama will always be there. Sounds to me like a HIV or malaria, neither of which I believe will help us attract tourists.
We were going to go with a herpes punchline because HIV is a total downer, and for the record, malaria can indeed be cured with the right battery of anti-parasite drugs. But the point nonetheless remains. This is not, in the strictest sense, the most attractive slogan ever produced by an ad agency.
Although we’ve never understood what was so lovable about the state, apparently Virginia's motto is something to swoon over. The slogan Virginia is for Lovers is celebrating its 40th anniversary this year, which easily makes it the country’s longest running state tourism tagline. It’s so successful that it has the chance to gain a spot on the Madison Avenue Advertising Walk of Fame.
Besides critical acclaim, the slogan also helps attract a lot of cash into the state. Somehow they can quantify the lovers line, as they report that tourism brings in $19 billion per year. It also supports over 200,000 jobs and gets state and local communities some nice stuff with over a billion dollars in tax revenue. We need to figure out how to get a slice of all this tourism cash action; how does "Jaunted is For Lovers" grab you?
Fresh from the inbox, the United States Virgin Islands Department of Tourism is launching a new advertising blitz aimed at luring potential visitors from the U.S. with a message of freedom and reinvention. The idea of the "You, Unscripted" campaign - which includes TV, magazine, and Web spots - is that visitors to the USVI can have unique experiences that help them establish a new identity while on vacation, casting off old demons and rising like a phoenix from the ashes of the quotidian, or something. It's an updated version of a familiar message, but it could be especially resonant these days now that most Americans are stressed out and on the brink of unemployment. And as for the "unscripted" part, that might be a subtle way of saying that there's more to do in St. Thomas, St. John, and St. Croix than drink yourself into a stupor in some all-inclusive resort. Not that there's anything wrong with that.
Sick and tired of Americans traveling abroad for culture, food and activity when the good old homeland has it too, the United States has they launched a new website in hopes of keeping all those summer vacation dollars in the nifty fifty: DiscoverAmerica.com. Previously, they’ve used the “discover” theme to attract visitors from overseas, but this new site is focused on those keeping it local this year, for better or for worse.
All the juicy details of America’s finest offerings can be found through integration with the National Park Service, and Google Maps will help you plan a city-to-city road trip. Once you’ve found your dream vacation or experience here at home, the site will be happy to help you spend your hard earned cash through links to all the usual travel booking sites.
No man is an island, but Hong Kong sure is! Taking inspiration from similar campaigns in Chicago and New York, HK is recruiting friendly, multi-lingual residents for a "Meet the Locals" tourist service to begin in the fall.
When the "Hong Kong Pals" complete their training, or reprogramming to possibly take you to the best places to drop some Hong Kong dollars, you'll be able to walk up to one of the main Tourism Centers such as the office at the Star Ferry pier in Tsim Tsa Tsui and request a "Pal" based on your area of interest. Is your stomach hungry for unfamiliar food with no English translation? They'll have a Hong Kong cuisine expert. Have a thing for Cantonese Opera? Maybe you and your new "Pal" can take in a show together.
Again, this all goes back to what Hong Kong tourism is calling the "financial tsunami," or what we just plain call the economy. Hong Kong has decided to promote their living culture as their "principal 'soft' asset" now that all Asian cities are vying for tourist dollars. Let's just hope that things that don't take a turn for the worse and your Pal starts directing you to jewelry shops and expat bars; that's what we have cruise ships for.
What is New York City to its tourists but a loud, crass and hectic metropolis centered around areas like Times Square and Fifth Avenue, places that only further the frenetic mood. Seeking to counter this as well as bolster their own resources, the tourist board opened the starkly fresh "Official NYC Information Center" in Midtown this January.
Nestled into a storefront on Seventh Avenue between 53rd and 52nd Streets, the friendly space designed by WXY Architecture is packed to the gills with user-friendly technology. It's pretty much a confused tourist's dream, with touch-screen map tables which can help you to create personalized city itineraries, along with the ability to browse free events and NYC Visit's "Just Ask the Locals" feature.
While we've been busy musing on whether or not we'd go to that far away land of Australia, the gang down at Tourism Australia have been figuring out yet another strategy to convince us. And it's one we're pretty in tune with: blogging.
Tourism Australia has just started inviting influential bloggers from various nations to visit Oz and (presumably) blog up a storm about it. They've got a bunch of super-fashionable fashion bloggers lined up right now, including New York's The Sartorialist and Julia Knole from Germany's Les Mads, and even one of the most popular Chinese bloggers, Yibo Fan.
Presumably the tourism board is hoping treating these bloggers like royalty will lead to enthusiastic promotion of Australia as a destination. Here at Jaunted we've got it the wrong way round: we've been doing the enthusiastic promos already, because we love the place. Can we have a free trip too?
· Bloggers New Weapon in Australia's Tourism Campaign [AAP]
· Everyone Wants You To Go To Australia But Are You Really Gonna Go? [Jaunted]
· The Five Best Beaches in Sydney [Jaunted]
[Photo: El Fotopakismo]
If what you’re doing is planning a trip to Portland — or just looking for cool places and happenings around town — you should follow Travel Portland. We share tips on making the most of this city we love, and we’re happy to answer any questions you may have, whether you’re a first-time visitor or a seasoned pro.
In an ideal world, all tweeters would have to justify their existence. Oh, if only it were that easy! But since we're all about separating signals from noise: here are three travel-related Twitter accounts who know what they're into.
Tourism Marketing / Tourism Boards / Tourism Board Travel / Comedy / Lewis Black / Recession Travel / → All Tags
Because of their overwhelming dependence on tourism, the islands of the Caribbean have been hit especially hard by the latest global economic bummer. I read in the Economist this morning that the number of visitors is likely to fall by up to a third, a forecast that has prompted the Atlantis resort on Paradise Island to lay off 800 workers and caused investors to pull out of several planned multi-billion-dollar resort complexes. Usually in a business downturn, companies cut their marketing budgets, but there are always a few radicals that double down instead, gunning for visibility in a diminished field. Aruba is doubling down in this recession with a big advertising push that features the grouchy comedian and satirist Lewis Black, and it just might work.
Laptop Travel / Queensland Travel / Facebook / Websites / Tourism Boards / Tourism Marketing / → All Tags
You might not know about the cheesy 1980s marketing pitch for the north-eastern Australia state of Queensland: "Beautiful one day, perfect the next."
While tropical storms and embarrassing politicians might have spoiled this image of perfection, you can't say Queensland's not trying in the tourism game. They've even got an official Facebook page and we actually like it.
It's a lively page with people leaving messages on the "wall" (usually Queenslanders giving a really biased opinion), competitions to enter and useful info on festivals and events taking place around the state. And last time we checked, Queensland was the proud owner of 2,128 fans.
According to this Facebook page, Queensland's current logo is "Where else but Queensland?" A risky marketing strategy because actually, there are plenty of alternative answers to this rhetorical question. We'll be generous enough to leave it unanswered.