Season’s Special: Winter Wonderland Tourism Campaigns

abouTourism wishes you Merry Christmas and a Happy & Productive New Year!

Let’s see what winter and the holidays look like in various destinations around the world!

Christmas New Orleans Style

New Orleans Tourism Marketing Corporation (NOTMC) has launched a multimedia holiday marketing campaign inviting visitors to enjoy the month-long event.

The 2011 version of the 27-year-old Christmas New Orleans Style celebration features events throughout the city are scheduled from December 1st through Twelfth Night, January 5th, 2012.

The multi-platform ad campaign is centered on a series of short YouTube videos featuring New Orleans native Bryan Batt, a veteran stage and Emmy-award-winning TV actor. In the videos, which can be viewed on a special enhanced landing page devoted to the campaign, Batt encourages viewers to spend the holidays in New Orleans, explaining the many reasons for doing so in a humorous and slightly irreverent tone.

In addition to integrating NOTMC’s existing social media presence, a thirty-second TV spot is running in select markets. Additionally, each print ad will contain a bar code so consumers can use their smartphones to scan the code connecting them to a dedicated CNOS mobile microsite. There they can view travel deals, see a list of events, enter the Christmas sweepstakes, and see Reveillon restaurants and menus. Smartphone users can also access information at

To sweeten the pot for those who may wish to visit New Orleans, NOTMC will offer three free trips to New Orleans as well as a Facebook countdown to Christmas with prizes given to online winners each day throughout December.

Television commercials and print ads, created by Peter Mayer Advertising, will run in key regional markets including: Alexandria, Baton Rouge, Biloxi-Gulfport, Birmingham, Jackson, Lafayette, Little Rock, Mobile-Pensacola, Monroe-El Dorado, and Shreveport. Magazine print ads will include Passport, AAASouthern Traveler (LA, MS, AR) and Louisiana Cookin’.


“Celebrations Packed” Singapore Online Campaign

Christmas is just a click away, New Year is waiting. And Singapore Tourism Board just launched their online tourism marketing campaign, Celebrations Packed Singapore: What Will You Pack in a Singapore Holiday Contest, showcasing a Christmas kaleidoscope of celebrations.

To join the online tourism marketing contest, participants were urged to pack their bag by picking the Singaporean experiences that they would pack for Christmas in the Tropics. From cocktail on Singapore Flyer, Traditional Foot Reflexology, The Night Safari or Lau Pak Sat Food Experience they can just drag it into their suitcase.

Fantastic weekly prizes are given away for the online tourism marketing campaign contest, with a 3 nights stay at selected hotels. As grand prizes, a pair of return tickets to Singapore with accommodation and shopping vouchers.


Wisconsin Mitten Winter Campaign

Following the attention that the image of a Wisconsin-shaped mitten caused, which was used in the recently launched campaign by the Wisconsin Department of Tourism, the organization decided to use it in good cause and work in partnership with the defending state of Michigan who debated the originality of the concept as they consider the mitten to be a core element of their image.

Wisconsin Department of Tourism spokeswoman Lisa Marshall said the intent of using a mitten shaped like the state for the winter tourism campaign wasn’t to step on Michigan’s toes — or fingers.

“We’re not the Mitten State. Michigan, they can own that. We want to be known as the Fun State,” she said. The department used a leaf shaped like Wisconsin for its fall tourism campaign and will move onto something new for spring, but for now, the mitten stays.

Wisconsin Department of Tourism is now collecting mittens for charity. Anyone who wants to make a donation can take gloves or mittens to a Wisconsin Welcome  Center.

In light of all the buzz surrounding the image of a Wisconsin-shaped mitten on and its social media sites, the Wisconsin Department of Tourism invited the public to visit a Travel Wisconsin Welcome Center or participating chamber of commerce or convention and visitors bureau during business hours until Jan. 15 to donate new or gently used mittens. The mittens will then be donated to local charities.

“There has been a lot of national excitement surrounding the debate over whether Wisconsin or Michigan looks more like a mitten,” Governor Scott Walker said. “Our Pure Michigan friends have agreed to join us in taking all of this attention and turning it into something positive.  We encourage everyone in both states to ‘shake hands’ and donate mittens to help make this winter a bit warmer for those in need.”

“Go out and buy a pair of gloves, a pair of mittens, donate them and we’ll turn around and give them to the Salvation Army and New Horizons,” said Dave Clements of the La Crosse Area Visitors Bureau. “And you’ll get a warm feeling of giving and somebody in need gets a nice little gift for Christmas.”


Montana’s Winter Tourism Campaign

The Montana Office of Tourism’s 2011-12 winter campaign features some of Montana’s biggest fans and homegrown talents: cinematographer and world-renown ski film director Warren Miller; Olympic mogul skier Heather McPhie, and X-Games medalist/author/photographer Kevin Connolly. They are joined by others whose work and lives have been shaped by Montana—photographers, naturalists, historians—to tell the story of Montana in the wintertime.

Research shows that skiing and wildlife watching are the leading motivators for Montana’s winter travelers, and this campaign is designed to keep Montana top-of-mind with those prospective travelers. Targeting both national audiences and key feeder markets for non-resident winter visitors, the campaign will leverage the success from complementary warm season campaigns (in 2010 and 2011) to build awareness of and intent to travel to Montana in its secret season—winter.

The national winter campaign includes a targeted print and online media buys, and is supported with aggressive key market winter campaign of out-of-home, radio, and additional online media in Chicago, Seattle, and Minneapolis. These cities represent strong existing and potential winter traveler markets for Montana. In selecting these markets, the Office of Tourism also leverages the high level of awareness and demand for Montana built by warm season campaigns in those same cities the past two years.


Tourism Australia Calls  for New Year’s Eve Videos

Tourism Australia and the City of Sydney will release a short film made from user-generated video of New Year’s Eve experiences as part of a campaign to promote Sydney as a prime destination for tourists to visit in the new year.

The film, to be titled ‘Project:12′, will be created overnight and released on Tourism Australia’s YouTube channel and Facebook and Twitter pages in the early hours of New Year’s Day before many other parts of the world reach their own 2012 countdown.

The digital campaign is facilitated via the City of Sydney’s NYE iPhone app which allows users to upload 12-second clips of their new year celebrations.

Executive general manager of marketing for Tourism Australia, Nick Baker, says the user generated content approach lends itself well to the tourism space and also to the nature of Australians.

“The level of interaction and interest from Australians in the Nothing Like Australia campaign was great with over 41,000 photos uploaded,” Bakers says. “Australians love talking about the country so it [user generated content] is a natural sweet spot for us.”

On managing the quality and amount of content received Baker says the team ensures their pre work is done which for this campaign included mapping out the key themes that they’re looking for and preparing a story line. The app only allows people to upload footage in 12 second blocks, which we feel is enough to get a nugget of their new year’s story,” Baker says.

The campaign aims to capture the shared experience and emotion of welcoming in the new year with friends and family against the backdrop of Sydney’s fireworks display.

Tourism Australia is giving away a BridgeClimb gift certificate for the best video clip submitted.

The initiative is part of a Tourism Australia and City of Sydney joint venture to show the world why there’s nothing like celebrating New Year’s Eve in Sydney, Australia.


Destination Brandwatch: Singapore Tourism empowers visitors with YourSingapore

The Singapore Tourism Board has refocused the Singapore destination brand from “Uniquely Singapore” to “YourSingapore”.  The aim is to place visitors at its core and to build on Singapore’s strengths as a destination. The strategy is to empower travellers to personalise their own Singapore experience, according to what they like, and how and when they want to experience it. At the heart of the campaign is a holistic digital approach that includes a new website, significant investment into search engine marketing, blogger engagement, mobile, social media and travel e-commerce.

These platforms are devised to engage visitors pre, during and post arrival and will be aggressively promoted. Visitors are invited to plan their individual Singapore travel itinerary in a user-friendly manner and to share of experiences among travellers and residents alike. The launch of Singapore’s new brand and digital strategy  at ITB Berlin last week has gotten the sector talking. Some call it innovative, others wonder whether it is too whizzy. The proof is in the durian pudding, as we may say in “YourSingapore”. Travel technology pundits have shared their comments on the move by a tourism board to steer towards a customer-direct and largely digital approach. One of the most common themes coming through is how busy the site appears. There are a lot of images on the home page and as attractive as it looks, it can be quite overwhelming, especially someone who’s never been to Singapore.

In any case, recognizing the successful branding efforts of the Uniquely Singapore campaign over the last five years, it was clear that the next chapter in the brand story would necessarily be an evolution, a natural transition, and not an overhaul. Ken Low, assistant chief executive of the STB’s Marketing Group said: “We firmly believe that to differentiate Singapore in what is becoming a crowded market for destination marketing, STB has to embrace global trends and the shift in media consumption, to the extent that we have put digital at the heart of our marketing communications, in order to transform the way we reach out to our potential visitors. We will continue to use traditional media in our communications, but it will play a more specific role to emotionally engage our audience and drive potential visitors to our digital platforms where they can experience and have a glimpse into what Singapore has to offer.”

In the span of 6 years since Uniquely Singapore was launched, Singapore has seen an increase in visitor arrivals from 8.3 million in 2004 to 9.7 million in 2009, representing growth of 16.8 percent. Singapore has also witnessed strong growth in tourism receipts during this period from S$9.8 billion in 2004 to S$15.2 billion in 2008, up by 55.1 percent.*

In many ways, unleashing YourSingapore is an acknowledgement of the transfer of power from supplier to customer. Let the customer decide what they want; tell them what is on offer and make it easy for them to research, plan and book – that’s the essence of the new STB campaign.

Eunice Yeo, area director for Northern and Western Europe of the Singapore Tourism Board says, “YourSingapore builds upon Singapore’s unique attributes and the emotional connection that visitors experience in destination. It enables us to differentiate Singapore in the increasingly crowded destination brand marketplace.”

For STB, the road to “YourSingapore” has just begun. Now they have to make sure the road leads somewhere, and not some dead end.

*The Singapore Tourism Board has also just released its forecasts for the tourism industry in 2010: 11.5–12.5 million in visitor arrivals and S$17.5-S$18.5 billion in tourism receipts.