City Will Boost Spending In Bid To Crack List Of Top-Five Convention Sites
San Francisco, CA -- (SBWIRE) -- 11/02/2012 -- With a new $5 million war chest, Dallas is launching a new branding and marketing campaign aimed at attracting more conventions and tourists. It has been recently introduced with fanfare at the annual meeting of the Dallas Convention & Visitors Bureau.
The new multimedia campaign is designed to capitalize on what Dallas mayor Mike Rawlings calls a “billion-dollar opportunity” by helping create reasons for visitors to return regularly to the region.
With the tagline, “Big things happen here,” the campaign designed by local marketing agency TracyLocke, will carry the message Dallas is a “city of success… where optimism meets opportunity,” says Dallas Convention & Visitors Bureau CEO Phillip Jones. The new slogan replaces “Live large. Think big,” first introduced in 2004.
Jones, who has headed the convention bureau for nine years, says his branding and marketing budgets in past years ran about $1 million. The cities like Las Vegas and Orlando spent far more lavishly to market themselves as tourism and convention sites. A $5 million annual branding and marketing campaign will help Big D make up at least some of that difference.
Viewing the campaign as an investment to lure future business, Jones notes Las Vegas saw an estimated $6.3 billion economic impact from meetings and conventions in 2011, compared with roughly $3 billion in Dallas. The total marketing and advertising budget for the Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority is about $118 million.
Las Vegas, along with Orlando, Chicago, New York City, and Anaheim, California (Disneyland’s home), are generally seen as the nation’s top-five destinations for conventions. Backers of the Dallas initiative hope it will help the city crack the top five, moving up from its current rank in the top 10.
To fund the drive to boost its share of the lucrative convention business, Dallas earlier this year created the Dallas Tourism Public Improvement District. Each of the city’s more than 100 hotels with over 100 rooms agreed to a new 2% tax on visitors’ bills to fund a five-year program of improvements and the new media campaign. About half of the estimated $10 million the new tax will raise annually will be earmarked for branding and marketing efforts.
While details of the new campaign are still in development – it will debut at a convention of meeting planners in January -- Jones says the new campaign will reach far more broadly than did past efforts, which were primarily aimed at meeting and convention trade publications. The new campaign aims to tap social and digital media, both nationally and worldwide. A main focus will be to attract travelers from southwestern and southeastern states.
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