MAKING THE OUTDOORS STAND OUT
The Central New York Travel Region (I Love NY) wanted to further grow promotion of its destination in the Northeast U.S., southwestern Canada and beyond.
The Central New York partner counties decided to build on recent momentum by highlighting another great strength of the region: It’s numerous outdoor recreation opportunities.
ABC Creative Group set out to break down those vast choices into something outdoor adventurers could find, browse and learn more about with ease.
Tourism industry trends showed outdoor adventure is a perfect complement to the food and beverage experience that Central New York travelers were already responding too. The new campaign would focus on bringing all three experiences together for culinary visitors and outdoor enthusiasts alike under the “Craft your own adventure in Central New York” message.
THE MULTI-FACETED OUTDOOR ADVENTURE CAMPAIGN EXCLUSIVELY USED SEO TACTICS AND DIGITAL MARKETING ASSETS TO ACHIEVE THE CLIENT’S OBJECTIVES.
SEO methodology guided the research as ABC prepared to engage a crowded market of competing destinations. Outdoor recreation, after all, isn’t uncommon – especially in rural areas.
ABC started by identifying the activities that an outdoor adventurer might search for, which helped organize the website map and determine what experiences to feature in advertising. The next step was a deeper dive into the keywords in each of these categories, which guided content development.
With a limited budget, ABC was able to successfully engage its target audience and feeder markets, drawing quality traffic to visitcentralnewyork.com and consequently developing the relationships that convert web visitors to tourists.
Our all-digital strategy allowed us to effectively and efficiently target people within a day’s drive of Central New York who were also interested in the outdoor activities we promoted without traditional print or broadcast advertising.
We gave outdoor adventure a prominent spot on a search-engine-optimized, content-rich site launched in fall 2015.
WE THEN WENT TO WORK DEVELOPING ORIGINAL EDITORIAL CONTENT HIGHLIGHTING EACH OF THESE AREAS IN A LESS FORMAL, BLOG-STYLE WAY.
These 14 articles were promoted using a content activation strategy that leveraged our media placement across the web as well as on social media sites, including Facebook and Instagram. The PR team also negotiated placement for ABC-authored articles in niche publications.
ABC used a series of 12 banner ads to attract attention to our core outdoor adventure activities. A one-minute online video complemented all of the static advertising.
ABC developed an attention-grabbing “pitch sheet” for travel journalists at media events as well as a consumer itinerary for distribution at tourism-related trade shows.
PITCHING THE PRESS
Press relations were critical for the initiative operating on a relatively small budget. ABC developed infographic-style pitch sheets for several I Love New York travel writer events that ABC staff also attended on behalf of the client.
In addition, ABC created media-rich press kits delivered in the form of business-card-sized USBs that include the pitch sheets and video.
Francis Vachon from thecelebritycafe.com, an entertainment site with more than 8.5 million unique visitors each month, traveled to Brew Central and wrote extensively about his experience. Joe Bauer came on assignment for craftbeer.com, a top resource for the craft community, to write about the hop and beer resurgence in Madison County.
ABC attracted journalists from the national publication Ale Street News and the write-ups extended the reach to the target demographic.
ABC leveraged ad placement to get e-blasts out to the brew community via Draft, Beer Connoisseur and Brew Your
The campaign successfully established Central New York as a premier destination for a variety of experiences with craft beverage, agritourism and outdoor adventure at the core. Not only did Central New York experience a huge boost in quality website traffic, we also saw tourist spending in the region continue to climb.
THE RESULTS OF THE DIGITAL MEDIA MIX AND SEO STRATEGY WERE NOTHING SHORT OF REMARKABLE. UPON LAUNCHING THE OUTDOOR ADVENTURE CAMPAIGN, CENTRAL NEW YORK TRIPLED THE AMOUNT OF TRAFFIC IT HAD SEEN ALL YEAR IN JUST ONE MONTH. A SITE THAT HAD AVERAGED 440 MONTHLY VISITORS THROUGH JULY 2015 IMMEDIATELY SAW 8,320 USERS STOP BY IN AUGUST AND SEPTEMBER.
WHAT’S MORE IS THOSE VISITORS SPENT AN AVERAGE OF JUST OVER FIVE MINUTES READING CONTENT, A LEVEL OF ENGAGEMENT THAT EXCEEDED EXPECTATIONS.
AS OF SEPTEMBER 2016, THERE HAD BEEN MORE THAN 18,000 VIEWS OF THE ARTICLES WE CREATED THIS YEAR. THAT SUCCESS HAS TRANSLATED TO SIGNIFICANT INCREASES IN ATTENTION TO LISTINGS, EVENTS, DINING AND LODGING. IN ADDITION, MORE THAN 13,000 HAVE VISITED THE VISITCENTRALNEWYORK.COM HOMEPAGE THIS YEAR.
FURTHERMORE, CENTRAL NEW YORK SAW ITS FIFTH CONSECUTIVE YEAR OF GROWTH IN TOURISM SPENDING THANKS IN PART TO ITS TRIO OF MARKETING CAMPAIGNS.
TRAVELER SPENDING JUMPED
BETWEEN 2014 AND 2015 TO AN UNPRECEDENTED TOTAL OF NEARLY
ACCORDING TO A STATEWIDE STUDY BY TOURISM ECONOMICS. THE
INCREASE IN TOURISM SPENDING BUILDS OFF THE
BOOST THAT THE CENTRAL NEW YORK VACATION REGION SAW BETWEEN 2013 AND 2014.
ABC takes pride in proclaiming “There are good ideas and bad ideas. We just know the difference.” The account managers and creative team constantly come to clients new and old with fresh ideas. Brew Central has been one of the best so far and ABC intends to keep it growing year after year.