FY13_Marketing_Plan_Final

Stephanie Bell Martin, M.A.
Stephanie Bell Martin, M.A.Public Information Officer and Health Educator en Alembic Research & Marketing
Ste. Genevieve Department of Tourism FY2013 Marketing Plan – Page 1
Ste. Genevieve Department of Tourism
Destination Marketing Organization for Ste. Genevieve County
FY2013 MARKETING PLAN
__________________________________________________________________________________________
Ste. Genevieve’s Top Measurable Marketing Objectives:
1. Increase taxable sales in Ste. Genevieve with tourism-related dollars.
2. Increase the number of visitors / tourists.
3. Increase the number of overnight stays.
4. Continue to focus on group leisure tours to maintain increased group visits and promote
overnight stays during the week.
5. Attract new markets via internet advertising and social media, which provide additional
data and statistics for future marketing strategies.
Ste. Genevieve Department of Tourism FY2013 Marketing Plan – Page 2
Executive Summary
Ste. Genevieve unique attractions create an atmosphere ripe for tourism. Recognizing the potential of the
industry, in recent years the City of Ste. Genevieve created a department of tourism, allocated an operating and marketing
budget and hired a full-time director to create a marketing plan to capture new revenue opportunities through visitors to
the region.
The number one asset is its rich history contained in a small geographic area and manifsted in the town’s
extraordinary architecture and preserved history, as interpreted at various museum houses. The community also boasts
local, state and national recreation areas, wineries, art galleries, sporting and entertainment venues and unique
accommodations and shopping, plus a varied schedule of annual events and festivals that reflect the community’s cultural
identity.
Conducting a SWOT (Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threats) Analysis demonstrates the potential for
a strong tourism industry in Ste. Genevieve, however the growth will need to occur at a rate the infrastructure can handle.
Weaknesses such as a lack of signage and a limited number of lodging accommodations can become major problems
should tourism grow faster than can be handled.
Currently, the greatest threats to tourism are weakened local, state, national and global economies and the
possible impact of a tourism tax passed by a competing larger city with close proximity to Ste. Genevieve. The short-term
effect of the current economy is a lack of disposable income of potential visitors; the long-term concern is the deterioration
of local infrastructure and limits on infrastructure improvements. The impact of the neighboring city’s lodging tax—which
has a significantly larger base in terms of available room rentals—is the potential for a negative impact on overnight stays
here as the neighboring city ramps up advertising of its attractions.
While there is limited marketing research specific to for Southeast Missouri. State and National research has
shown cultural travel to be the number one reason people travel. Cultural travel includes not only historical attractions, but
recreation, wineries, festivals and events, shopping, arts and entertainment. With Ste. Genevieve offering a majority of the
elements that make up cultural travel the region is poised to attract these visitors through a focused marketing campaign,
using the statistical data gathered by state and national entities, and gathering local data to be used toward future
marketing endeavors, visitor profile surveys and a conversion study.
Goals and objectives for tourism marketing include increasing the number of taxable sales within tourism-related
tax codes, increasing the number of visitors via advertising and awareness campaigns, increasing the number of
overnight stays, focusing on group leisure tours to increase group visits and overnight stays during the week, attracting
new markets by showcasing Ste. Genevieve attractions for multiple-day and overnight vacations and obtaining visitor data
and statistics for future marketing strategies and analysis.
Strategies to obtain the goals and objectives involve a multiple-tiered approach, combining all forms of revenue
dedicated to tourism marketing of Ste. Genevieve. In addition in marketing travel-oriented publications, Ste. Genevieve is
mounting an awareness campaign utilizing the Ste. Genevieve brand to markets up to 300+ miles away. The city also
plans to heavily advertise events to markets up to 50 miles and target specific markets where a special audience is
available.
Limited financial resources require careful selection of advertising opportunities. Choosing print publications that
provide hard leads, traveler information and leisure group tour interest will allow the tourism department to build a
database for direct mail marketing, statistical analysis and determining ROI, while attracting the cultural traveler. Radio
advertising on stations whose listenership meets the demographic market for the region, such as National Public Radio,
will provide an additional point of contact using marketing dollars efficiently. Focused online advertising also will be used
to ensure longevity, message and brand awareness and we will utilizie free social media networks to attract the primary
demographic and obtain additional data and statistics. In addition to print, radio and online advertising, Ste. Genevieve will
need to become user-friendly with mobile devices and applications for the tech-savvy traveler.
In addition, several opportunities are available to bolster marketing efforts and encourage growth through building
relationships with local and regional entities in both the public and private sectors.
Finally, evaluating of the effectiveness of our marketing activities will be required according to the Fiscal Year of
each entity contributing funds to the marketing of Ste. Genevieve. This will be done through monitoring city and county
tourism-related sales tax, individual and group visitor counts, Passport sales and internet analytics. Reports to the funding
entity will be provided, at minimum, on an annual basis.
Ste. Genevieve Department of Tourism FY2013 Marketing Plan – Page 3
Situation Analysis
Key Tourism Assets
§ Internationally Recognized Historical Significance:
o The City of Ste. Genevieve is recognized as the oldest European-founded community on the west bank of
the Mississippi River in Missouri. Its rich history dates from the Mississipian—American Indian Period and
Culture, through its tenure as a major French colonial settlement in the Upper Mississippi Valley. From
1760 through 1800 Ste. Genevieve was ruled by Spain. After the historic Louisiana Purchase, Ste.
Genevieve became home to the influx of Americans as the west was opened, followed by 19
th
German
immigration.
§ Original 18
th
Century French Colonial Architecture:
o Due to the architectural treasures in Ste. Genevieve County, the county is being considered for National
Park Service designation as a National Historic Park District. In 2006, historic downtown Ste. Genevieve
was designated a National Historic Landmark District.
o The town boasts the largest collection of original 18
th
centrury French Colonial vertical log architecture in
the United States. Including the six museum homes that are open for tours: Beauvais-Amoureux House,
Felix Valle House State Historic Site, La Maison de Guibourd, and the Bolduc House Museum.
o In addition the town has preserved many structures from the early period of American settlement
including structures associated with Moses Austin and Senator Lewis F. Linn, Missouri’s first U.S.
senator.
o There are also structures dating from the earliest German immigration including the first Lutheran church
and first Lutheran school building on the western bank of the Mississippi river.
§ Persistant Multicultural Heritage and Events:
o American Indian
§ Evidence of a significant Mississipian—American Indian Period and Culture.
§ Large collection of projectile points at the Ste. Genevieve Museum.
§ “This Community of Cultures: The Shawnee and Delaware Indian Experience in Eastern Missouri
from 1780-1830” exhibit at the Bolduc House Museum.
o French
§ King’s Ball
§ École de Soldat
§ French Heritage Festival
§ Jour de Fete
§ La Guignolée
§ Living history at the Bolduc House Museum
§ Felix Vallé House State Historic Site events: Open House, French Veillée, French Christmas
o African American
§ Online educational website that provides the story of Pelagie Amoureux and the Amoureux
House with lesson plans for teachers and a social media page containing a virtual visit for
students.
o Spanish
§ Milice du Sainte Genevieve Colonial Militia
§ Monument marking Ste. Genevieve’s location on the El Camino Real placed by the Daughters of
the American Revolution.
o American
§ Civil War Encampment—Sons of Union Veteran Soldiers of the Civil War
§ Plein Air
§ Promenade des Arts
§ Historic Memorial Cemetery Spirit Reunion
§ Fourth Friday Art Walk
§ Holiday Christmas Festival
o German
§ Rural Heritage Day
o Italian
Ste. Genevieve Department of Tourism FY2013 Marketing Plan – Page 4
§ POW Weingarten Camp at the Ste. Genevieve Museum
§ Burgeoning Wine Industry:
o The county’s burgeoning wine industry now boasts seven vineyards and wineries: Cave Winery,
Charleville Winery and Microbrewery, Chaumette Winery and Vineyards, Crown Valley Winery,
Weingarten Vineyard, and Sainte Genevieve Winery, as well as the Crown Valley Brewing and Distilling
Company.
o Seven area wineries created the Route du Vin and host multiple wine-pairing events annually.
§ Arts and Performing Arts:
o The Ste. Genevieve area has a rich history of involvement in and support of the arts, beginning with the
residency of John James Audubon and the highly-respected Ste. Genevieve Art Colony and Summer
School of Art that operated in the county 1932-1941, which included luminaries such as Thomas Hart
Benton and Joe Jones.
o Today, Ste. Genevieve boasts a thriving art community, working studios and galleries and a roster of well-
know artists. Ste. Genevieve is home to nationally-renowned wildlife artist Al Agnew and portrait artist Ali
Cavanaugh. Monthly and annual art events are staged including the Fourth Friday Art Walk, Promenade
des Arts, Adult Plein Air and Children Plein Air events.
o The performing arts also are prominent, with an annual highlight being the Summer Music Festival
performance series, mounted by the Ste. Genevieve Chamber of Commerce in conjunction with the St.
Louis Sheldon Concert Hall.
o A 700-seat auditorium, which will be available for community-sponsored performances, is under
construction on the local public school campus.
§ Natural Resources
o The county is home to Hawn State Park and four state natural areas: John James Audubon Trail &
Natural Area (Audubon lived in Ste. Genevieve for a time), Pickle Springs, Magnolia Hollow, and Hickory
Canyon. Outdoor opportunities also are available in several city parks in Ste. Genevieve and the
communities of Bloomsdale and St. Mary.
o Crown Ridge Tiger Sanctuary, which is home to Bengal tigers.
o Mississippi River access by the Modoc River Ferry.
o Eagles visit annually and the Mississippi River basin is home to a variety of birds and water fowl.
§ Meeting Space: Business, Reunions and Weddings
o A number of established venues are available in the city and county and offer a wide variety of options for
business meetings, reunions and weddings.
o Ste. Genevieve began marketing to business meeting coordinators, reunions and wedding coordinators in
FY2010.
§ Sport Venues
o A number of established sporting venues are available in the county, including the 18-hole Ste.
Genevieve Golf Course, Ste. Genevieve County Community Center (with an indoor leisure pool), along
with three football fields, nine baseball/softball fields, twelve soccer fields, eight basketball/volleyball
courts, six tennis courts, two rodeo arenas, a frisbee golf course and numerous biking/hiking trails.
o Ste. Genevieve has hosted the annual State Road Race four years in a row, junior rodeos and baseball
tournaments. Sports destination marketing began in FY2010. Local resources offer potential additional
baseball/softball tournaments, bicycle races, marathons and fishing tournaments.
§ Shops, Dining and Lodging
o Authentic and locally-owned dining establishments, boutiques, specialty stores, and art galleries
throughout the historic downtown Ste. Genevieve are an added feature to the entire region and increase
marketability for multiple-day stays.
Ste. Genevieve Department of Tourism FY2013 Marketing Plan – Page 5
o For antique lovers, there are both large antique malls and quaint, intimate antique stores in St. Mary,
Coffman, and Ste. Genevieve.
SWOT Analysis: Strengths
§ Marketing Partnerships:
o Partnership with the Missouri Division of Tourism Cooperative Marketing grant enhances Ste.
Genevieve’s tourism marketing dollars and opportunities to reach out-of-state markets through advertising
in carefully selected print, radio and online media that will reach our target demographics.
o The department of tourism created in 2009 by the City of Ste. Genevieve has a full-time director and
allocated funds from the general revenue to serve as an annual operating and marketing budget.
o The Ste. Genevieve County Commission redesignated the City of Ste. Genevieve to serve as the county-
wide Destination Marketing Organization. The commission allocated funding from general tax revenue to
the city for tourism marketing in FY2011.
o The tourism department and DMO have successful, stable partnerships with community entities:
Chamber of Commerce, University of Missouri Extension office, Convention and Visitors Bureau,
Foundation for Restoration of Ste. Genevieve, the Ste. Genevieve Downtown Redevelopment Project,
numerous local service clubs, the Jour de Fete Committee, Mississippi River Hills Association and local
media.
o Since 2001, the City of Ste. Genevieve has collected a 2% bed tax , providing an additional source of
revenue for leisure tour related marketing efforts.
§ Geographic Advantage:
o Ste. Genevieve is located halfway between St. Louis and Cape Girardeau, on the west bank of the
Mississppi near a major north-south Interstate highway and with close proximity to several immediate out-
of-state-markets.
o Capitalize proximity to the Mississippi River, lore and history. The City of Ste. Genevieve has indicated
interest in creating viable access to the river through business development using Tax Increment
Financing.
o The downtown National Historic Landmark District assets are condensed within an approximate one mile
radius and welcome to pedestrian traffic.
§ Volunteerism and Grassroots Involvement:
o In addition to the department of tourism, Ste. Genevieve has an all-volunteer Tourism Advisory Council
who advise the direction of tourism marketing and a Landmarks Commission who is in charge of historic
preservation.
o Local residents strongly value their community, as evidenced by high levels of volunteerism, the number
of civic groups, the grassroots effort that resulted in construction of a $7 million community center and
library in 2000, construction of a 700-seat auditorium and the passage of local sales taxes that benefit
senior citizens and law enforcement.
§ Growing Social Media and Geocaching Presence:
o Utilization of social media to promote the region and events, including presence on Facebook, Twitter,
Linked-In and Four Square.
o The department of tourism is encouraging local groups and businesses to develop websites and a social
media presence that may be linked to the city’s efforts. Ste. Genevieve hosted a free “Web Advantage”
seminar, conducted by Big River Telephone, to assist interested parties in creating an internet presence.
o Geocaching: We sent four separate “travel bugs” to areas where there is likely to be interest in our
attractions and offerings, including Canada, France, Germany and Creole communities in the U.S.
Ste. Genevieve Department of Tourism FY2013 Marketing Plan – Page 6
SWOT Analysis: Weaknesses
§ Poor Signage:
o No clear and consistent signage, utilizing the new branding logo, to direct visitors to areas of interest.
o Approximately 8 Tourist Information signs throughout the City of Ste. Genevieve need to be replaced.
o State signs
§ 2 signs posted at both northbound and southbound I-55 exit 150--Highway 32 and 1 sign on
southbound North Main Street from the Modoc Ferry.
§ 1 sign posted on eastbound Highway 32 approaching the Highway 61 intersection.
§ Limited Financial Resources:
o The current economic situation and limited financial resources impede the ability to adequately staff the
Departmen of Tourism and Ste. Genevieve Welcome Center.
§ No Mass Transit:
o Major airport located 1½ hours away and no scheduled public bus, train or boat traffic to Ste. Genevieve.
§ Lack of Space in the Historic Downtown:
o The Welcome Center is the only pubic restroom open year-round.
o Available parking is limited to street parking and a few small lots.
§ Lodging Options:
o Group lodging is limited to one hotel in the city and one in the county.
o Two RV parks are located in Ste. Genevieve county with limited slips, seasonal restrictions and a
considerable distance from area attractions.
§ Inadequate Family and Evening Entertainment:
o Limited family and children-friendly attractions and events.
o Few businesses are open in Ste. Genevieve city and county during evening hours and on holidays.
SWOT Analysis: Opportunities
§ Favorable Coverage via Advertising and Editorial:
o Purchase a variety of print, radio and online media that will reach several million people throughout the
year.
o Offer familiarization trips to travel group coordinators, travel writers with a focus on French Colonial and
multicultural audiences, and media partners.
§ Cross Marketing with Illinois Attractions:
o Outreach to Illinois French historical sites, events and attractions to increase awareness of French
Colonial connections in Missouri.
o Partner with the Kaskaskia River Confluence Project currently under design by the Corps of Engineers.
§ Niche Tourism Trends:
o Engage in efforts that favor Ste. Genevieve: leisure tours, culinary and agritourism, heritage tourism,
celebration of the Sesquicentennial of the Civil War, eco-tourism, educational tourism and multicultural
tourism.
§ Growing Wine Industry:
o Tap into publicity being generated by our county’s growing wine industry and cooperate with local
wineries, Route du Vin and Misouri’s Grape and Wine program.
Ste. Genevieve Department of Tourism FY2013 Marketing Plan – Page 7
§ Agritourism:
o The Mississippi River Hills Association, headquartered in Ste. Genevieve and supported by the University
of Missouri, is developing and applying European-style appellations for agri-products from the United
States and to showcase Southeast Missouri as a destination for agritourism.
§ Casino License for Cape Girardeau:
o The newest Missouri casino will be located in Cape Girardeau, one hour south of Ste. Genevieve on a
major north-south interstate highway, may provide opportunities for day trips from groups in route to/from
the casino.
SWOT Analysis: Threats
§ Weak Economy:
o Gasoline prices and economic factors continue to cause consumers to limit their travel. A weakened
economy in the larger sense also affects the disposable income of potential visitors.
o Local economic stagnation could lead to deterioration of infrastructure, making the community less
attractive to visitors and tourists.
§ New Competition for Over-night Stays:
o Recent lodging tax passed in Farmington, Mo, located 30 miles west of Ste. Genevieve on Highway 32.
o Anticipated $250,000 annual revenue from this tax and a portion has been offered to area attractions to
encourage overnight stays in Farmington.
Target Markets (Note: Some of these markets will be addressed with funding from multiple sources)
§ Primarily out-of-state women and/or couples, 50-300+ miles of Ste. Genevieve, age 45-65, own a vehicle,
homeowners, average household income of at least $75,000 and leisure group tour operators. Tourism
motivations may include French colonial architecture, culture, and/or history; Missouri history; Mississippi River
history and lore; family connections (genealogy); antiques; wineries; outdoor recreation; technology activities
(geo-caching), as well as new dining, lodging, and shopping opportunities. All guests who visit the website
VisitSteGen.com, group travel planners and visitors to Ste. Genevieve.
o Primarily focusing on states bordering the Mississippi River, including the metropolitan areas of Chicago,
Indianapolis, Memphis, Louisville, Nashville TN, Little Rock, Topeka, Kansas City, Des Moines and Cedar
Rapids. We also target communities within reasonable distance (100 miles) of a bridge or ferry across the
Mississippi River.
§ Residents of our secondary geographic target area, which is up to 150 miles of Ste. Genevieve, consisting
primarily of: the Illinois cities of Springfield, Mt. Vernon, Carbondale Murphysboro, Evansville, IN, Paducah, KY,
Memphis, TN, and Jonesboro, AR. The area also includes Missouri counties of St. Louis, St. Charles, Jefferson,
and Franklin.
§ Commercial group tour operators who plan trips in our target region, which includes all states bordering the
Mississippi River and international tours from Quebec, France and Germany.
§ Organization group tour planners (such as churches, banks, alumni groups) in all states bordering the Mississippi
River, in cities along major inter-state highways, and international leisure group tours from Quebec.
§ Those with special interest in French colonial architecture, culture, and/or history; Missouri history; Mississippi
River history and lore; and family connections (genealogy).
§ Those with other special interests, such as antiques; wineries; outdoor recreation; technology activities (geo-
caching); as well as new dining, lodging, and shopping opportunities, and/or couples seeking a short-term
honeymoon or romantic getaway locale.
§ Business meeting planners and coordinators through the Midwest interested in low-cost facilities that meet
technology needs
§ Wedding coordinators interested in offering an alternative, unique experience taking advantage of the romantic
ambiance of the region.
Ste. Genevieve Department of Tourism FY2013 Marketing Plan – Page 8
§ Sport event coordinators from the region involved with cycling, marathons, baseball/softball and fishing.
Goals and Objectives
Goal 1: Strengthen the Ste. Genevieve economy by promoting Ste. Genevieve as a unique cultural attraction.
§ Objective A: Increase taxable sales in Ste. Genevieve County within tourism-related businesses.
§ Objective B: Increase the number of visitors / tourists.
§ Objective C: Increase the number of overnight stays.
§ Objective D: Harness tax revenue to increase funding and sustain marketing efforts.
Goal 2: Increase awareness of Ste. Genevieve area attractions and tourism-related businesses in as a
destination for leisure groups, business meetings, sport events and weddings.
§ Objective A: Increase the number of visitors/tourists and requests for information from states bordering the
Mississippi River.
§ Objective C: Position Ste. Genevieve as a destination for leisure group tours.
§ Objective D: Position Ste. Genevieve as a cost-effective destination for business meetings and events.
§ Objective E: Position Ste. Genevieve as a prime location for regional sport events: bicycle races, marathons,
baseball/softball tournaments and fishing tournaments.
§ Objective F: Position Ste. Genevieve as a unique and romantic location for weddings, honeymoons and family
reunions.
Goal 3: Expand into new markets and maximize the use of resources by utilizing new and emerging technologies
to promote Ste. Genevieve.
§ Objective A: Partner and create sponsorships with various media on the planning side of travel for the 100 plus
mile traveler, travel groups, business conferences, and sport activities.
§ Objective B: Develop cooperative, synergistic relationships with organizations that have similar goals and
objectives and that utilize technology to enhance services, increase amenities and promote their business.
§ Objective C: Seek out ways to enhance electronic marketing opportunities through social media, mobile web site
and QR Codes.
§ Objective D: Reach out to new markets: Jonesboro, AR, Evansville, IN, Paducah, KY, Carbondale, IL and
Jackson, TN.
§ Objective E: Reach out to multiethnic markets with promotion of Native American and African American
information and exhibits.
§ Objective F: Develop additional attractions through partnerships with federal, state and local agencies,
associations and committees.
Goal 4: Expand the tourism-related data available to the Ste. Genevieve DMO.
§ Objective A: Print and distribute to all attractions, dining establishments and lodging facilities a visitor survey
profile. All completed surveys will be sent to the Ste. Genevieve Welcome Center to compile and organize data
for future marketing ventures.
Ste. Genevieve Department of Tourism FY2013 Marketing Plan – Page 9
§ Objective B: Utilize the tourism website, social media and other e-media opportunities for effective online
promotion and advertising.
§ Objective C: Develop visitor database through electronic marketing campaign from leads provided via print,
internet, group travel, radio advertising, and visitor profile surveys.
§ Objective D: Apply for grants and utilize budget opportunities to create mobile website and QR Code program
that may be used as a basic tourism tool for the traveler, will provide additional data to the tourism department,
and may be used in future endeavors such as event schedules, groupons, push marketing or discounts at local
attractions.
Plan of Action
Strategy 1: Utilize branding design and tie to message:
Rationale: The Ste. Genevieve Department of Tourism and the Ste. Genevieve Chamber of Commerce had a new logo
designed for city, county, event committees, and tourism to use as a part of the new branding design.
Description: The Ste. Genevieve logo incorporates French heritage and the Mississippi river into the new design. The
message “Discover…Ste. Genevieve” in combination with the new logo and colorful advertising will bring new attention to
a historic city. The message will vary depending upon what is being advertised: Discover Ste. Genevieve Wineries,
Discover Ste. Genevieve Shopping, and Discover Ste. Genevieve Romance are a few options with the new branding.
There seems to be limited knowledge of what the Ste. Genevieve region has to offer travelers. We hope to attract new
visitors by catching their attention with the new message and reach out to travelers for incremental visits.
Distribution outlets: Print, Radio and Internet advertising opportunities all markets.
Funding mechanism: Ste. Genevieve City Tourism Budget, Ste. Genevieve County Budget, Lodging Tax Budget,
Cooperative Marketing Program Grant and additional grant opportunities as they become available.
Target audience: women and/or couples, age 45-65, own a vehicle, homeowners and average household income of at
least $75,000. Tourism motivations may include French colonial architecture, culture, and/or history; Missouri history;
Mississippi River history and lore; family connections (genealogy); antiques; wineries; outdoor recreation; technology
activities (geo-caching), as well as new dining, lodging, and shopping opportunities. All guests who visit the website
VisitSteGen.com, group travel planners and visitors to Ste. Genevieve.
Strategy 2: Advertise in publications that cover up to a 300 mile radius of Ste. Genevieve.
Rationale: Using branding, message and compelling graphics and copy, Ste. Genevieve will advertise in print, online and
radio that combined reach millions in primarily out-of-state markets. This mix of publications is certain to boost inquiries,
visitor counts, tourism-related tax revenues and add to marketing database for future direct marketing and conversion
study.
Description: Advertising in regional and national publications to the individual and leisure group tour operators, business
coordinators, sports marketing, radio and established online websites.
Funding mechanism: Ste. Genevieve City Tourism Budget, Ste. Genevieve County Budget, Lodging Tax Budget,
Cooperative Marketing Program Grant and additional grant opportunities as they become available.
Target audience: Primarily out-of-state women and/or couples, up to 300 miles of Ste. Genevieve, age 45-65, own a
vehicle, homeowners, average household income of at least $75,000 and leisure group tour operators. Tourism
motivations may include French colonial architecture, culture, and/or history; Missouri history; Mississippi River history
and lore; family connections (genealogy); antiques; wineries; outdoor recreation; technology activities (geo-caching), as
well as new dining, lodging, and shopping opportunities. All guests who visit the website VisitSteGen.com, group travel
planners, business meeting planners, sport groups and visitors to Ste. Genevieve.
Strategy 3: Advertise in print media that provide hard leads to establish a database for future direct marketing
efforts.
Rationale: Using branding and compelling graphics, Ste. Genevieve will advertise in several magazines that together
reach millions of readers, leisure group tour operators and potential visitors in the planning stage of their vacation. This
Ste. Genevieve Department of Tourism FY2013 Marketing Plan – Page 10
mix of regional and national publications – both general and special-interest – are certain to boost inquiries, visitor counts,
overnight stays and tourism-related tax revenues. In addition, these advertisers will provide trackable leads to gain new
business, increase statistical information, and provide information for future strategic marketing.
Description: Advertising in regional and national, leisure-oriented print media: AAA Publications and Group Travel Leader
Brand.
Budget: Midwest Traveler $9,188.26
Southern Traveler $8,918.20
AAA Living $10,082.70
Journey’s KS & KY $1,370.53
Group Travel Leader $6,000.00
Bank Travel Mgmt $6,000.00
Going on Faith $6,000.00
Ad Production $2,000.00
$49,559.69
Funding mechanism: Cooperative Marketing Program Grant and Ste. Genevieve City Tourism Budget.
Target audience: Primarily out-of-state women and/or couples, 50-300+ miles of Ste. Genevieve, age 45-65, own a
vehicle, homeowners, an average household income of at least $75,000 and leisure group tour operators. Tourism
motivations may include French colonial architecture, culture, and/or history; Missouri history; Mississippi River history
and lore; family connections (genealogy); antiques; wineries; outdoor recreation; technology activities (geo-caching), as
well as new dining, lodging, and shopping opportunities. All guests who visit the website VisitSteGen.com, group travel
planners and visitors to Ste. Genevieve.
Strategy 4: Advertise on radio stations that meet the demographic market for the region.
Rationale: Ste. Genevieve will advertise on radio stations that together reach and primary target markets. This mix of
regional stations are certain to boost inquiries, visitor counts and tourism-related tax revenues. Ste. Genevieve will be
able to target specific markets and demographics based on listenership.
Description: Advertising in regional radio stations include National Public Radio in St. Louis, Mo, Cape Girardeau, Mo and
Carbondale, Il and local radio stations that reach both Missouri and Illinois markets.
Funding mechanism: Ste. Genevieve City Tourism Budget, Ste. Genevieve County Budget and Lodging Tax Revenue.
Target audience: Primarily regional and out-of-state women and/or couples, up to 300 miles of Ste. Genevieve, age 45-
65, own a vehicle, homeowners, an average household income of at least $75,000 and leisure group tour operators.
Tourism motivations may include French colonial architecture, culture, and/or history; Missouri history; Mississippi River
history and lore; family connections (genealogy); antiques; wineries; outdoor recreation; as well as new dining, lodging,
and shopping opportunities.
Strategy 5: Increase online advertising to ensure advertising longevity, message and brand awareness.
Rationale: Use branding and compelling graphics, Ste. Genevieve will advertise on established online websites that
together reach millions of online users and potential visitors. This mix of regional publications are certain to boost
inquiries, visitor counts and tourism-related tax revenues. In addition, online advertising will provide information on which
publications provide the most traffic to the tourism website, along with demographic information.
Description: Advertising in regional and national established online websites: St. Louis Post-Dispatch, SE Missourian,
Belleville News Democrat and Southern Illinoisan.
Funding mechanism: Ste. Genevieve City Tourism Budget, Ste. Genevieve County Budget and Lodging Tax Revenue.
Target audience: Primarily out-of-state women and/or couples, up to 300 miles of Ste. Genevieve, age 45-65, own a
vehicle, homeowners, an average household income of at least $75,000 and leisure group tour operators. Tourism
motivations may include French colonial architecture, culture, and/or history; Missouri history; Mississippi River history
and lore; family connections (genealogy); antiques; wineries; outdoor recreation; technology activities (geo-caching), as
Ste. Genevieve Department of Tourism FY2013 Marketing Plan – Page 11
well as new dining, lodging, and shopping opportunities. All guests who visit the website VisitSteGen.com, group travel
planners and visitors to Ste. Genevieve.
Strategy 6: Execute Visitor Profile Survey and look to complete a conversion research proposal.
Rationale: The survey will benefit the DMO by indicating where to target resources, and will aid the DMO and partner
organizations in planning efforts. Execution of the Visitor Profile Survey began in FY2012, but more data will need to be
collected to meet the requirements of a conversion study.
Description: A Visitor Profile Survey was developed in conjunction with the Missouri Department of Tourism Industry
Research Department. The survey has been distributed to merchants, restaurants, art galleries, wineries and lodging
establishments in an effort to obtain data for a conversion study. The survey will also be included to potential visitors
requesting tourism information. This data will then be used for future strategic marketing efforts.
Budget: Ste. Genevieve City Tourism Budget and volunteer labor.
Target audience: All visitors and individuals requesting tourism information to the Ste. Genevieve region.
Strategy 7: Provide opportunities for discount tours through collaboration with the historic homes and city,
county and regional attractions.
Rationale: The Ste. Genevieve Department of Tourism began a “Passport Program” in June 2010 that provided individual
travelers discounts to tour all of the historic homes and the museum. The idea for this program was to increase historical
tourism dollars for each of the houses and museum and encourage overnight stays. An effort is underway to partner this
program with lodging facilities to offer special evening tours for guests as an additional attraction to encourage overnight
stays.
Description: The Ste. Genevieve Welcome Center designed a “Passport”, business card size, that reflects all of the
available homes for tours. There are two passports available, one for adults and one for children. Each is color-coded for
proper tracking. The revenue is paid to the Welcome Center and is distributed to the homes and museum at the end of the
month. This program has significantly increased traffic and revenue to each of these facilities. The program will continue
and be reintroduced in the Spring of 2012 to invigorate interest and to guage travel behavior.
Budget: $25,000
Funding mechanism: Ste. Genevieve City Tourism Budget and travelers purchasing the Passport.
Target audience: women and/or couples, age 45-65, own a vehicle, homeowners and an average household income of at
least $75,000. Tourism motivations may include French colonial architecture, culture, and/or history; Missouri history;
Mississippi River history and lore; family connections (genealogy); antiques; wineries; outdoor recreation; technology
activities (geo-caching), as well as new dining, lodging, and shopping opportunities. All guests who visit the website
VisitSteGen.com, group travel planners and visitors to Ste. Genevieve.
Strategy 8: Look for opportunities to connect with county and regional entities and continue collaboration with
local and regional organizations.
Rationale: Maximize the use of resources (human and financial) while minimizing overlap.
Description: Develop and/or maintain relationships with organizations with compatible goals. For example: collaboration
with the various historical resources, wineries, shops, galleries, dining establishments, lodging, associations, committees
and event coordinators to promote events throughout the Ste. Genevieve region.
Budget: Ste. Genevieve Genevieve City Tourism Budget, in-kind donations, and volunteers.
Target audience: Local and regional organizations with compatible goals, including the Missouri Humanities Council,
Missouri State Archives, Ste. Genevieve Chamber of Commerce, the City of Ste. Genevieve Tourism Tax Commission,
the Ste. Genevieve County Commission, Mississippi River Hills Association, Route du Vin, and the River Heritage
Ste. Genevieve Department of Tourism FY2013 Marketing Plan – Page 12
Association. Other communities (i.e., Bloomsdale, St. Mary, etc.), will be invited to get involved in our marketing
campaigns.
Strategy 9: Produce collateral materials featuring special events targeted to niche markets.
Rationale: Create low-cost fliers and postcards spotlighting specific events in Ste. Genevieve and the surrounding area.
Distribute via direct mail, ad packets and Visitors Centers in Missouri, Illinois and St. Louis for maximum impact.
Description: ½-page fliers, 4” x 6” postcards and 8-1/2” x 11” fliers will be produced to alert travelers about upcoming
events in the Ste. Genevieve area.
Budget: Ste. Genevieve City Tourism Budget, in-kind donations and event committee budgets.
Target audience: Targeted niche markets specific to each event. women and/or couples, age 45-65, own a vehicle,
homeowners and an average household income of at least $75,000. Tourism motivations may include French colonial
architecture, culture, and/or history; Missouri history; Mississippi River history and lore; family connections (genealogy);
antiques; wineries; outdoor recreation; technology activities (geo-caching), as well as new dining, lodging, and shopping
opportunities. All guests who visit the website VisitSteGen.com, group travel planners and visitors to Ste. Genevieve.
Strategy 10: Utilize new technologies available to target and reach out to current and future markets. These
technologies include, but are not limited to: mobile web site, social media, QR Codes and push marketing.
Rationale: Advertise to a new generation of travelers who are looking for convenience and information via mobile
technology, social media, QR Codes and push marketing. Analytics of VisitSteGen.com, Ste. Genevieve Facebook,
Twitter, Linked In and Four Square reflect an increase in access by mobile users. These types of media may be used as
instant “word of mouth” marketing tool. Privately-owned historic homes in the Historic Downtown District may elect to
participate in a QR Code program to provide more information to visitors regarding Ste. Genevieve’s architectural
treasures and historical uniqueness. Utilize free social media marketing tools to enhance brand awareness and create
programs to increase visits to Ste. Genevieve.
Description: Work with mobile web site developers to create a mobile web site. Develop the site to mimic the new tourism
website and provide information in a format that will be accessible for all internet accessible mobile devices. Create a QR
Code program that will include a walking tour map, QR Codes for privately owned homes and information about each site
on the walking tour.Continue to promote Ste. Genevieve area and events via Facebook and Twitter, increase presence on
Four Square and work with regional attractions to create Four Square badges to increase visits.Using each of these
technologies, capture information for future push marketing efforts.
Budget: Ste. Genevieve City Tourism Budget, Ste. Genevieve County Commission Budget, Community Development
Foundation Grant and additional grant opportunities as they become available.
Anticipated Expense: $8000+ for development of mobile web site and QR Code program.
Target audience: Internet mobile users age 45-65 who own a vehicle, homeowners and an average household income of
at least $75,000. Tourism motivations may include French colonial architecture, culture, and/or history; Missouri history;
Mississippi River history and lore; family connections (genealogy); antiques; wineries; outdoor recreation; technology
activities (geo-caching), as well as new dining, lodging, and shopping opportunities.
Ste. Genevieve Department of Tourism FY2013 Marketing Plan – Page 13
Budget Anticipated Revenue Summary
Ste. Genevieve Department of Tourism $30,000
2% Tourism Tax $16,000
Cooperative Marketing Program Grant $49,559.69
Ste. Genevieve County Commission (requested) $25,000
TOTAL ANTICIPATED FUNDING FOR FY2013 $120,559.69
Evaluation
Evaluation activities will be carried out with assistance from the University of Missouri Extension office and partner
organizations.
Evaluation method 1: Monitor annual changes in Ste. Genevieve County taxable sales within tourism-related dollars.
Data is gathered by the Missouri Department of Revenue.
Evaluation method 2: Monitor annual changes in City of Ste. Genevieve lodging tax and tourism-related business tax
revenues.
Evaluation method 3: Monitor changes in individual and group visitor counts and Passport sales, as gathered by the Ste.
Genevieve Welcome Center. Include analyzing visitor point of origin data.
Evaluation method 4: Obtain data on web site and cell phone downloaded applications.
Evaluation method 5: Track number of “Passports” purchased and percentages of increased/decreased foot traffic and
revenue.
__________________________________________________________________________________________

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FY13_Marketing_Plan_Final

  • 1. Ste. Genevieve Department of Tourism FY2013 Marketing Plan – Page 1 Ste. Genevieve Department of Tourism Destination Marketing Organization for Ste. Genevieve County FY2013 MARKETING PLAN __________________________________________________________________________________________ Ste. Genevieve’s Top Measurable Marketing Objectives: 1. Increase taxable sales in Ste. Genevieve with tourism-related dollars. 2. Increase the number of visitors / tourists. 3. Increase the number of overnight stays. 4. Continue to focus on group leisure tours to maintain increased group visits and promote overnight stays during the week. 5. Attract new markets via internet advertising and social media, which provide additional data and statistics for future marketing strategies.
  • 2. Ste. Genevieve Department of Tourism FY2013 Marketing Plan – Page 2 Executive Summary Ste. Genevieve unique attractions create an atmosphere ripe for tourism. Recognizing the potential of the industry, in recent years the City of Ste. Genevieve created a department of tourism, allocated an operating and marketing budget and hired a full-time director to create a marketing plan to capture new revenue opportunities through visitors to the region. The number one asset is its rich history contained in a small geographic area and manifsted in the town’s extraordinary architecture and preserved history, as interpreted at various museum houses. The community also boasts local, state and national recreation areas, wineries, art galleries, sporting and entertainment venues and unique accommodations and shopping, plus a varied schedule of annual events and festivals that reflect the community’s cultural identity. Conducting a SWOT (Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threats) Analysis demonstrates the potential for a strong tourism industry in Ste. Genevieve, however the growth will need to occur at a rate the infrastructure can handle. Weaknesses such as a lack of signage and a limited number of lodging accommodations can become major problems should tourism grow faster than can be handled. Currently, the greatest threats to tourism are weakened local, state, national and global economies and the possible impact of a tourism tax passed by a competing larger city with close proximity to Ste. Genevieve. The short-term effect of the current economy is a lack of disposable income of potential visitors; the long-term concern is the deterioration of local infrastructure and limits on infrastructure improvements. The impact of the neighboring city’s lodging tax—which has a significantly larger base in terms of available room rentals—is the potential for a negative impact on overnight stays here as the neighboring city ramps up advertising of its attractions. While there is limited marketing research specific to for Southeast Missouri. State and National research has shown cultural travel to be the number one reason people travel. Cultural travel includes not only historical attractions, but recreation, wineries, festivals and events, shopping, arts and entertainment. With Ste. Genevieve offering a majority of the elements that make up cultural travel the region is poised to attract these visitors through a focused marketing campaign, using the statistical data gathered by state and national entities, and gathering local data to be used toward future marketing endeavors, visitor profile surveys and a conversion study. Goals and objectives for tourism marketing include increasing the number of taxable sales within tourism-related tax codes, increasing the number of visitors via advertising and awareness campaigns, increasing the number of overnight stays, focusing on group leisure tours to increase group visits and overnight stays during the week, attracting new markets by showcasing Ste. Genevieve attractions for multiple-day and overnight vacations and obtaining visitor data and statistics for future marketing strategies and analysis. Strategies to obtain the goals and objectives involve a multiple-tiered approach, combining all forms of revenue dedicated to tourism marketing of Ste. Genevieve. In addition in marketing travel-oriented publications, Ste. Genevieve is mounting an awareness campaign utilizing the Ste. Genevieve brand to markets up to 300+ miles away. The city also plans to heavily advertise events to markets up to 50 miles and target specific markets where a special audience is available. Limited financial resources require careful selection of advertising opportunities. Choosing print publications that provide hard leads, traveler information and leisure group tour interest will allow the tourism department to build a database for direct mail marketing, statistical analysis and determining ROI, while attracting the cultural traveler. Radio advertising on stations whose listenership meets the demographic market for the region, such as National Public Radio, will provide an additional point of contact using marketing dollars efficiently. Focused online advertising also will be used to ensure longevity, message and brand awareness and we will utilizie free social media networks to attract the primary demographic and obtain additional data and statistics. In addition to print, radio and online advertising, Ste. Genevieve will need to become user-friendly with mobile devices and applications for the tech-savvy traveler. In addition, several opportunities are available to bolster marketing efforts and encourage growth through building relationships with local and regional entities in both the public and private sectors. Finally, evaluating of the effectiveness of our marketing activities will be required according to the Fiscal Year of each entity contributing funds to the marketing of Ste. Genevieve. This will be done through monitoring city and county tourism-related sales tax, individual and group visitor counts, Passport sales and internet analytics. Reports to the funding entity will be provided, at minimum, on an annual basis.
  • 3. Ste. Genevieve Department of Tourism FY2013 Marketing Plan – Page 3 Situation Analysis Key Tourism Assets § Internationally Recognized Historical Significance: o The City of Ste. Genevieve is recognized as the oldest European-founded community on the west bank of the Mississippi River in Missouri. Its rich history dates from the Mississipian—American Indian Period and Culture, through its tenure as a major French colonial settlement in the Upper Mississippi Valley. From 1760 through 1800 Ste. Genevieve was ruled by Spain. After the historic Louisiana Purchase, Ste. Genevieve became home to the influx of Americans as the west was opened, followed by 19 th German immigration. § Original 18 th Century French Colonial Architecture: o Due to the architectural treasures in Ste. Genevieve County, the county is being considered for National Park Service designation as a National Historic Park District. In 2006, historic downtown Ste. Genevieve was designated a National Historic Landmark District. o The town boasts the largest collection of original 18 th centrury French Colonial vertical log architecture in the United States. Including the six museum homes that are open for tours: Beauvais-Amoureux House, Felix Valle House State Historic Site, La Maison de Guibourd, and the Bolduc House Museum. o In addition the town has preserved many structures from the early period of American settlement including structures associated with Moses Austin and Senator Lewis F. Linn, Missouri’s first U.S. senator. o There are also structures dating from the earliest German immigration including the first Lutheran church and first Lutheran school building on the western bank of the Mississippi river. § Persistant Multicultural Heritage and Events: o American Indian § Evidence of a significant Mississipian—American Indian Period and Culture. § Large collection of projectile points at the Ste. Genevieve Museum. § “This Community of Cultures: The Shawnee and Delaware Indian Experience in Eastern Missouri from 1780-1830” exhibit at the Bolduc House Museum. o French § King’s Ball § École de Soldat § French Heritage Festival § Jour de Fete § La Guignolée § Living history at the Bolduc House Museum § Felix Vallé House State Historic Site events: Open House, French Veillée, French Christmas o African American § Online educational website that provides the story of Pelagie Amoureux and the Amoureux House with lesson plans for teachers and a social media page containing a virtual visit for students. o Spanish § Milice du Sainte Genevieve Colonial Militia § Monument marking Ste. Genevieve’s location on the El Camino Real placed by the Daughters of the American Revolution. o American § Civil War Encampment—Sons of Union Veteran Soldiers of the Civil War § Plein Air § Promenade des Arts § Historic Memorial Cemetery Spirit Reunion § Fourth Friday Art Walk § Holiday Christmas Festival o German § Rural Heritage Day o Italian
  • 4. Ste. Genevieve Department of Tourism FY2013 Marketing Plan – Page 4 § POW Weingarten Camp at the Ste. Genevieve Museum § Burgeoning Wine Industry: o The county’s burgeoning wine industry now boasts seven vineyards and wineries: Cave Winery, Charleville Winery and Microbrewery, Chaumette Winery and Vineyards, Crown Valley Winery, Weingarten Vineyard, and Sainte Genevieve Winery, as well as the Crown Valley Brewing and Distilling Company. o Seven area wineries created the Route du Vin and host multiple wine-pairing events annually. § Arts and Performing Arts: o The Ste. Genevieve area has a rich history of involvement in and support of the arts, beginning with the residency of John James Audubon and the highly-respected Ste. Genevieve Art Colony and Summer School of Art that operated in the county 1932-1941, which included luminaries such as Thomas Hart Benton and Joe Jones. o Today, Ste. Genevieve boasts a thriving art community, working studios and galleries and a roster of well- know artists. Ste. Genevieve is home to nationally-renowned wildlife artist Al Agnew and portrait artist Ali Cavanaugh. Monthly and annual art events are staged including the Fourth Friday Art Walk, Promenade des Arts, Adult Plein Air and Children Plein Air events. o The performing arts also are prominent, with an annual highlight being the Summer Music Festival performance series, mounted by the Ste. Genevieve Chamber of Commerce in conjunction with the St. Louis Sheldon Concert Hall. o A 700-seat auditorium, which will be available for community-sponsored performances, is under construction on the local public school campus. § Natural Resources o The county is home to Hawn State Park and four state natural areas: John James Audubon Trail & Natural Area (Audubon lived in Ste. Genevieve for a time), Pickle Springs, Magnolia Hollow, and Hickory Canyon. Outdoor opportunities also are available in several city parks in Ste. Genevieve and the communities of Bloomsdale and St. Mary. o Crown Ridge Tiger Sanctuary, which is home to Bengal tigers. o Mississippi River access by the Modoc River Ferry. o Eagles visit annually and the Mississippi River basin is home to a variety of birds and water fowl. § Meeting Space: Business, Reunions and Weddings o A number of established venues are available in the city and county and offer a wide variety of options for business meetings, reunions and weddings. o Ste. Genevieve began marketing to business meeting coordinators, reunions and wedding coordinators in FY2010. § Sport Venues o A number of established sporting venues are available in the county, including the 18-hole Ste. Genevieve Golf Course, Ste. Genevieve County Community Center (with an indoor leisure pool), along with three football fields, nine baseball/softball fields, twelve soccer fields, eight basketball/volleyball courts, six tennis courts, two rodeo arenas, a frisbee golf course and numerous biking/hiking trails. o Ste. Genevieve has hosted the annual State Road Race four years in a row, junior rodeos and baseball tournaments. Sports destination marketing began in FY2010. Local resources offer potential additional baseball/softball tournaments, bicycle races, marathons and fishing tournaments. § Shops, Dining and Lodging o Authentic and locally-owned dining establishments, boutiques, specialty stores, and art galleries throughout the historic downtown Ste. Genevieve are an added feature to the entire region and increase marketability for multiple-day stays.
  • 5. Ste. Genevieve Department of Tourism FY2013 Marketing Plan – Page 5 o For antique lovers, there are both large antique malls and quaint, intimate antique stores in St. Mary, Coffman, and Ste. Genevieve. SWOT Analysis: Strengths § Marketing Partnerships: o Partnership with the Missouri Division of Tourism Cooperative Marketing grant enhances Ste. Genevieve’s tourism marketing dollars and opportunities to reach out-of-state markets through advertising in carefully selected print, radio and online media that will reach our target demographics. o The department of tourism created in 2009 by the City of Ste. Genevieve has a full-time director and allocated funds from the general revenue to serve as an annual operating and marketing budget. o The Ste. Genevieve County Commission redesignated the City of Ste. Genevieve to serve as the county- wide Destination Marketing Organization. The commission allocated funding from general tax revenue to the city for tourism marketing in FY2011. o The tourism department and DMO have successful, stable partnerships with community entities: Chamber of Commerce, University of Missouri Extension office, Convention and Visitors Bureau, Foundation for Restoration of Ste. Genevieve, the Ste. Genevieve Downtown Redevelopment Project, numerous local service clubs, the Jour de Fete Committee, Mississippi River Hills Association and local media. o Since 2001, the City of Ste. Genevieve has collected a 2% bed tax , providing an additional source of revenue for leisure tour related marketing efforts. § Geographic Advantage: o Ste. Genevieve is located halfway between St. Louis and Cape Girardeau, on the west bank of the Mississppi near a major north-south Interstate highway and with close proximity to several immediate out- of-state-markets. o Capitalize proximity to the Mississippi River, lore and history. The City of Ste. Genevieve has indicated interest in creating viable access to the river through business development using Tax Increment Financing. o The downtown National Historic Landmark District assets are condensed within an approximate one mile radius and welcome to pedestrian traffic. § Volunteerism and Grassroots Involvement: o In addition to the department of tourism, Ste. Genevieve has an all-volunteer Tourism Advisory Council who advise the direction of tourism marketing and a Landmarks Commission who is in charge of historic preservation. o Local residents strongly value their community, as evidenced by high levels of volunteerism, the number of civic groups, the grassroots effort that resulted in construction of a $7 million community center and library in 2000, construction of a 700-seat auditorium and the passage of local sales taxes that benefit senior citizens and law enforcement. § Growing Social Media and Geocaching Presence: o Utilization of social media to promote the region and events, including presence on Facebook, Twitter, Linked-In and Four Square. o The department of tourism is encouraging local groups and businesses to develop websites and a social media presence that may be linked to the city’s efforts. Ste. Genevieve hosted a free “Web Advantage” seminar, conducted by Big River Telephone, to assist interested parties in creating an internet presence. o Geocaching: We sent four separate “travel bugs” to areas where there is likely to be interest in our attractions and offerings, including Canada, France, Germany and Creole communities in the U.S.
  • 6. Ste. Genevieve Department of Tourism FY2013 Marketing Plan – Page 6 SWOT Analysis: Weaknesses § Poor Signage: o No clear and consistent signage, utilizing the new branding logo, to direct visitors to areas of interest. o Approximately 8 Tourist Information signs throughout the City of Ste. Genevieve need to be replaced. o State signs § 2 signs posted at both northbound and southbound I-55 exit 150--Highway 32 and 1 sign on southbound North Main Street from the Modoc Ferry. § 1 sign posted on eastbound Highway 32 approaching the Highway 61 intersection. § Limited Financial Resources: o The current economic situation and limited financial resources impede the ability to adequately staff the Departmen of Tourism and Ste. Genevieve Welcome Center. § No Mass Transit: o Major airport located 1½ hours away and no scheduled public bus, train or boat traffic to Ste. Genevieve. § Lack of Space in the Historic Downtown: o The Welcome Center is the only pubic restroom open year-round. o Available parking is limited to street parking and a few small lots. § Lodging Options: o Group lodging is limited to one hotel in the city and one in the county. o Two RV parks are located in Ste. Genevieve county with limited slips, seasonal restrictions and a considerable distance from area attractions. § Inadequate Family and Evening Entertainment: o Limited family and children-friendly attractions and events. o Few businesses are open in Ste. Genevieve city and county during evening hours and on holidays. SWOT Analysis: Opportunities § Favorable Coverage via Advertising and Editorial: o Purchase a variety of print, radio and online media that will reach several million people throughout the year. o Offer familiarization trips to travel group coordinators, travel writers with a focus on French Colonial and multicultural audiences, and media partners. § Cross Marketing with Illinois Attractions: o Outreach to Illinois French historical sites, events and attractions to increase awareness of French Colonial connections in Missouri. o Partner with the Kaskaskia River Confluence Project currently under design by the Corps of Engineers. § Niche Tourism Trends: o Engage in efforts that favor Ste. Genevieve: leisure tours, culinary and agritourism, heritage tourism, celebration of the Sesquicentennial of the Civil War, eco-tourism, educational tourism and multicultural tourism. § Growing Wine Industry: o Tap into publicity being generated by our county’s growing wine industry and cooperate with local wineries, Route du Vin and Misouri’s Grape and Wine program.
  • 7. Ste. Genevieve Department of Tourism FY2013 Marketing Plan – Page 7 § Agritourism: o The Mississippi River Hills Association, headquartered in Ste. Genevieve and supported by the University of Missouri, is developing and applying European-style appellations for agri-products from the United States and to showcase Southeast Missouri as a destination for agritourism. § Casino License for Cape Girardeau: o The newest Missouri casino will be located in Cape Girardeau, one hour south of Ste. Genevieve on a major north-south interstate highway, may provide opportunities for day trips from groups in route to/from the casino. SWOT Analysis: Threats § Weak Economy: o Gasoline prices and economic factors continue to cause consumers to limit their travel. A weakened economy in the larger sense also affects the disposable income of potential visitors. o Local economic stagnation could lead to deterioration of infrastructure, making the community less attractive to visitors and tourists. § New Competition for Over-night Stays: o Recent lodging tax passed in Farmington, Mo, located 30 miles west of Ste. Genevieve on Highway 32. o Anticipated $250,000 annual revenue from this tax and a portion has been offered to area attractions to encourage overnight stays in Farmington. Target Markets (Note: Some of these markets will be addressed with funding from multiple sources) § Primarily out-of-state women and/or couples, 50-300+ miles of Ste. Genevieve, age 45-65, own a vehicle, homeowners, average household income of at least $75,000 and leisure group tour operators. Tourism motivations may include French colonial architecture, culture, and/or history; Missouri history; Mississippi River history and lore; family connections (genealogy); antiques; wineries; outdoor recreation; technology activities (geo-caching), as well as new dining, lodging, and shopping opportunities. All guests who visit the website VisitSteGen.com, group travel planners and visitors to Ste. Genevieve. o Primarily focusing on states bordering the Mississippi River, including the metropolitan areas of Chicago, Indianapolis, Memphis, Louisville, Nashville TN, Little Rock, Topeka, Kansas City, Des Moines and Cedar Rapids. We also target communities within reasonable distance (100 miles) of a bridge or ferry across the Mississippi River. § Residents of our secondary geographic target area, which is up to 150 miles of Ste. Genevieve, consisting primarily of: the Illinois cities of Springfield, Mt. Vernon, Carbondale Murphysboro, Evansville, IN, Paducah, KY, Memphis, TN, and Jonesboro, AR. The area also includes Missouri counties of St. Louis, St. Charles, Jefferson, and Franklin. § Commercial group tour operators who plan trips in our target region, which includes all states bordering the Mississippi River and international tours from Quebec, France and Germany. § Organization group tour planners (such as churches, banks, alumni groups) in all states bordering the Mississippi River, in cities along major inter-state highways, and international leisure group tours from Quebec. § Those with special interest in French colonial architecture, culture, and/or history; Missouri history; Mississippi River history and lore; and family connections (genealogy). § Those with other special interests, such as antiques; wineries; outdoor recreation; technology activities (geo- caching); as well as new dining, lodging, and shopping opportunities, and/or couples seeking a short-term honeymoon or romantic getaway locale. § Business meeting planners and coordinators through the Midwest interested in low-cost facilities that meet technology needs § Wedding coordinators interested in offering an alternative, unique experience taking advantage of the romantic ambiance of the region.
  • 8. Ste. Genevieve Department of Tourism FY2013 Marketing Plan – Page 8 § Sport event coordinators from the region involved with cycling, marathons, baseball/softball and fishing. Goals and Objectives Goal 1: Strengthen the Ste. Genevieve economy by promoting Ste. Genevieve as a unique cultural attraction. § Objective A: Increase taxable sales in Ste. Genevieve County within tourism-related businesses. § Objective B: Increase the number of visitors / tourists. § Objective C: Increase the number of overnight stays. § Objective D: Harness tax revenue to increase funding and sustain marketing efforts. Goal 2: Increase awareness of Ste. Genevieve area attractions and tourism-related businesses in as a destination for leisure groups, business meetings, sport events and weddings. § Objective A: Increase the number of visitors/tourists and requests for information from states bordering the Mississippi River. § Objective C: Position Ste. Genevieve as a destination for leisure group tours. § Objective D: Position Ste. Genevieve as a cost-effective destination for business meetings and events. § Objective E: Position Ste. Genevieve as a prime location for regional sport events: bicycle races, marathons, baseball/softball tournaments and fishing tournaments. § Objective F: Position Ste. Genevieve as a unique and romantic location for weddings, honeymoons and family reunions. Goal 3: Expand into new markets and maximize the use of resources by utilizing new and emerging technologies to promote Ste. Genevieve. § Objective A: Partner and create sponsorships with various media on the planning side of travel for the 100 plus mile traveler, travel groups, business conferences, and sport activities. § Objective B: Develop cooperative, synergistic relationships with organizations that have similar goals and objectives and that utilize technology to enhance services, increase amenities and promote their business. § Objective C: Seek out ways to enhance electronic marketing opportunities through social media, mobile web site and QR Codes. § Objective D: Reach out to new markets: Jonesboro, AR, Evansville, IN, Paducah, KY, Carbondale, IL and Jackson, TN. § Objective E: Reach out to multiethnic markets with promotion of Native American and African American information and exhibits. § Objective F: Develop additional attractions through partnerships with federal, state and local agencies, associations and committees. Goal 4: Expand the tourism-related data available to the Ste. Genevieve DMO. § Objective A: Print and distribute to all attractions, dining establishments and lodging facilities a visitor survey profile. All completed surveys will be sent to the Ste. Genevieve Welcome Center to compile and organize data for future marketing ventures.
  • 9. Ste. Genevieve Department of Tourism FY2013 Marketing Plan – Page 9 § Objective B: Utilize the tourism website, social media and other e-media opportunities for effective online promotion and advertising. § Objective C: Develop visitor database through electronic marketing campaign from leads provided via print, internet, group travel, radio advertising, and visitor profile surveys. § Objective D: Apply for grants and utilize budget opportunities to create mobile website and QR Code program that may be used as a basic tourism tool for the traveler, will provide additional data to the tourism department, and may be used in future endeavors such as event schedules, groupons, push marketing or discounts at local attractions. Plan of Action Strategy 1: Utilize branding design and tie to message: Rationale: The Ste. Genevieve Department of Tourism and the Ste. Genevieve Chamber of Commerce had a new logo designed for city, county, event committees, and tourism to use as a part of the new branding design. Description: The Ste. Genevieve logo incorporates French heritage and the Mississippi river into the new design. The message “Discover…Ste. Genevieve” in combination with the new logo and colorful advertising will bring new attention to a historic city. The message will vary depending upon what is being advertised: Discover Ste. Genevieve Wineries, Discover Ste. Genevieve Shopping, and Discover Ste. Genevieve Romance are a few options with the new branding. There seems to be limited knowledge of what the Ste. Genevieve region has to offer travelers. We hope to attract new visitors by catching their attention with the new message and reach out to travelers for incremental visits. Distribution outlets: Print, Radio and Internet advertising opportunities all markets. Funding mechanism: Ste. Genevieve City Tourism Budget, Ste. Genevieve County Budget, Lodging Tax Budget, Cooperative Marketing Program Grant and additional grant opportunities as they become available. Target audience: women and/or couples, age 45-65, own a vehicle, homeowners and average household income of at least $75,000. Tourism motivations may include French colonial architecture, culture, and/or history; Missouri history; Mississippi River history and lore; family connections (genealogy); antiques; wineries; outdoor recreation; technology activities (geo-caching), as well as new dining, lodging, and shopping opportunities. All guests who visit the website VisitSteGen.com, group travel planners and visitors to Ste. Genevieve. Strategy 2: Advertise in publications that cover up to a 300 mile radius of Ste. Genevieve. Rationale: Using branding, message and compelling graphics and copy, Ste. Genevieve will advertise in print, online and radio that combined reach millions in primarily out-of-state markets. This mix of publications is certain to boost inquiries, visitor counts, tourism-related tax revenues and add to marketing database for future direct marketing and conversion study. Description: Advertising in regional and national publications to the individual and leisure group tour operators, business coordinators, sports marketing, radio and established online websites. Funding mechanism: Ste. Genevieve City Tourism Budget, Ste. Genevieve County Budget, Lodging Tax Budget, Cooperative Marketing Program Grant and additional grant opportunities as they become available. Target audience: Primarily out-of-state women and/or couples, up to 300 miles of Ste. Genevieve, age 45-65, own a vehicle, homeowners, average household income of at least $75,000 and leisure group tour operators. Tourism motivations may include French colonial architecture, culture, and/or history; Missouri history; Mississippi River history and lore; family connections (genealogy); antiques; wineries; outdoor recreation; technology activities (geo-caching), as well as new dining, lodging, and shopping opportunities. All guests who visit the website VisitSteGen.com, group travel planners, business meeting planners, sport groups and visitors to Ste. Genevieve. Strategy 3: Advertise in print media that provide hard leads to establish a database for future direct marketing efforts. Rationale: Using branding and compelling graphics, Ste. Genevieve will advertise in several magazines that together reach millions of readers, leisure group tour operators and potential visitors in the planning stage of their vacation. This
  • 10. Ste. Genevieve Department of Tourism FY2013 Marketing Plan – Page 10 mix of regional and national publications – both general and special-interest – are certain to boost inquiries, visitor counts, overnight stays and tourism-related tax revenues. In addition, these advertisers will provide trackable leads to gain new business, increase statistical information, and provide information for future strategic marketing. Description: Advertising in regional and national, leisure-oriented print media: AAA Publications and Group Travel Leader Brand. Budget: Midwest Traveler $9,188.26 Southern Traveler $8,918.20 AAA Living $10,082.70 Journey’s KS & KY $1,370.53 Group Travel Leader $6,000.00 Bank Travel Mgmt $6,000.00 Going on Faith $6,000.00 Ad Production $2,000.00 $49,559.69 Funding mechanism: Cooperative Marketing Program Grant and Ste. Genevieve City Tourism Budget. Target audience: Primarily out-of-state women and/or couples, 50-300+ miles of Ste. Genevieve, age 45-65, own a vehicle, homeowners, an average household income of at least $75,000 and leisure group tour operators. Tourism motivations may include French colonial architecture, culture, and/or history; Missouri history; Mississippi River history and lore; family connections (genealogy); antiques; wineries; outdoor recreation; technology activities (geo-caching), as well as new dining, lodging, and shopping opportunities. All guests who visit the website VisitSteGen.com, group travel planners and visitors to Ste. Genevieve. Strategy 4: Advertise on radio stations that meet the demographic market for the region. Rationale: Ste. Genevieve will advertise on radio stations that together reach and primary target markets. This mix of regional stations are certain to boost inquiries, visitor counts and tourism-related tax revenues. Ste. Genevieve will be able to target specific markets and demographics based on listenership. Description: Advertising in regional radio stations include National Public Radio in St. Louis, Mo, Cape Girardeau, Mo and Carbondale, Il and local radio stations that reach both Missouri and Illinois markets. Funding mechanism: Ste. Genevieve City Tourism Budget, Ste. Genevieve County Budget and Lodging Tax Revenue. Target audience: Primarily regional and out-of-state women and/or couples, up to 300 miles of Ste. Genevieve, age 45- 65, own a vehicle, homeowners, an average household income of at least $75,000 and leisure group tour operators. Tourism motivations may include French colonial architecture, culture, and/or history; Missouri history; Mississippi River history and lore; family connections (genealogy); antiques; wineries; outdoor recreation; as well as new dining, lodging, and shopping opportunities. Strategy 5: Increase online advertising to ensure advertising longevity, message and brand awareness. Rationale: Use branding and compelling graphics, Ste. Genevieve will advertise on established online websites that together reach millions of online users and potential visitors. This mix of regional publications are certain to boost inquiries, visitor counts and tourism-related tax revenues. In addition, online advertising will provide information on which publications provide the most traffic to the tourism website, along with demographic information. Description: Advertising in regional and national established online websites: St. Louis Post-Dispatch, SE Missourian, Belleville News Democrat and Southern Illinoisan. Funding mechanism: Ste. Genevieve City Tourism Budget, Ste. Genevieve County Budget and Lodging Tax Revenue. Target audience: Primarily out-of-state women and/or couples, up to 300 miles of Ste. Genevieve, age 45-65, own a vehicle, homeowners, an average household income of at least $75,000 and leisure group tour operators. Tourism motivations may include French colonial architecture, culture, and/or history; Missouri history; Mississippi River history and lore; family connections (genealogy); antiques; wineries; outdoor recreation; technology activities (geo-caching), as
  • 11. Ste. Genevieve Department of Tourism FY2013 Marketing Plan – Page 11 well as new dining, lodging, and shopping opportunities. All guests who visit the website VisitSteGen.com, group travel planners and visitors to Ste. Genevieve. Strategy 6: Execute Visitor Profile Survey and look to complete a conversion research proposal. Rationale: The survey will benefit the DMO by indicating where to target resources, and will aid the DMO and partner organizations in planning efforts. Execution of the Visitor Profile Survey began in FY2012, but more data will need to be collected to meet the requirements of a conversion study. Description: A Visitor Profile Survey was developed in conjunction with the Missouri Department of Tourism Industry Research Department. The survey has been distributed to merchants, restaurants, art galleries, wineries and lodging establishments in an effort to obtain data for a conversion study. The survey will also be included to potential visitors requesting tourism information. This data will then be used for future strategic marketing efforts. Budget: Ste. Genevieve City Tourism Budget and volunteer labor. Target audience: All visitors and individuals requesting tourism information to the Ste. Genevieve region. Strategy 7: Provide opportunities for discount tours through collaboration with the historic homes and city, county and regional attractions. Rationale: The Ste. Genevieve Department of Tourism began a “Passport Program” in June 2010 that provided individual travelers discounts to tour all of the historic homes and the museum. The idea for this program was to increase historical tourism dollars for each of the houses and museum and encourage overnight stays. An effort is underway to partner this program with lodging facilities to offer special evening tours for guests as an additional attraction to encourage overnight stays. Description: The Ste. Genevieve Welcome Center designed a “Passport”, business card size, that reflects all of the available homes for tours. There are two passports available, one for adults and one for children. Each is color-coded for proper tracking. The revenue is paid to the Welcome Center and is distributed to the homes and museum at the end of the month. This program has significantly increased traffic and revenue to each of these facilities. The program will continue and be reintroduced in the Spring of 2012 to invigorate interest and to guage travel behavior. Budget: $25,000 Funding mechanism: Ste. Genevieve City Tourism Budget and travelers purchasing the Passport. Target audience: women and/or couples, age 45-65, own a vehicle, homeowners and an average household income of at least $75,000. Tourism motivations may include French colonial architecture, culture, and/or history; Missouri history; Mississippi River history and lore; family connections (genealogy); antiques; wineries; outdoor recreation; technology activities (geo-caching), as well as new dining, lodging, and shopping opportunities. All guests who visit the website VisitSteGen.com, group travel planners and visitors to Ste. Genevieve. Strategy 8: Look for opportunities to connect with county and regional entities and continue collaboration with local and regional organizations. Rationale: Maximize the use of resources (human and financial) while minimizing overlap. Description: Develop and/or maintain relationships with organizations with compatible goals. For example: collaboration with the various historical resources, wineries, shops, galleries, dining establishments, lodging, associations, committees and event coordinators to promote events throughout the Ste. Genevieve region. Budget: Ste. Genevieve Genevieve City Tourism Budget, in-kind donations, and volunteers. Target audience: Local and regional organizations with compatible goals, including the Missouri Humanities Council, Missouri State Archives, Ste. Genevieve Chamber of Commerce, the City of Ste. Genevieve Tourism Tax Commission, the Ste. Genevieve County Commission, Mississippi River Hills Association, Route du Vin, and the River Heritage
  • 12. Ste. Genevieve Department of Tourism FY2013 Marketing Plan – Page 12 Association. Other communities (i.e., Bloomsdale, St. Mary, etc.), will be invited to get involved in our marketing campaigns. Strategy 9: Produce collateral materials featuring special events targeted to niche markets. Rationale: Create low-cost fliers and postcards spotlighting specific events in Ste. Genevieve and the surrounding area. Distribute via direct mail, ad packets and Visitors Centers in Missouri, Illinois and St. Louis for maximum impact. Description: ½-page fliers, 4” x 6” postcards and 8-1/2” x 11” fliers will be produced to alert travelers about upcoming events in the Ste. Genevieve area. Budget: Ste. Genevieve City Tourism Budget, in-kind donations and event committee budgets. Target audience: Targeted niche markets specific to each event. women and/or couples, age 45-65, own a vehicle, homeowners and an average household income of at least $75,000. Tourism motivations may include French colonial architecture, culture, and/or history; Missouri history; Mississippi River history and lore; family connections (genealogy); antiques; wineries; outdoor recreation; technology activities (geo-caching), as well as new dining, lodging, and shopping opportunities. All guests who visit the website VisitSteGen.com, group travel planners and visitors to Ste. Genevieve. Strategy 10: Utilize new technologies available to target and reach out to current and future markets. These technologies include, but are not limited to: mobile web site, social media, QR Codes and push marketing. Rationale: Advertise to a new generation of travelers who are looking for convenience and information via mobile technology, social media, QR Codes and push marketing. Analytics of VisitSteGen.com, Ste. Genevieve Facebook, Twitter, Linked In and Four Square reflect an increase in access by mobile users. These types of media may be used as instant “word of mouth” marketing tool. Privately-owned historic homes in the Historic Downtown District may elect to participate in a QR Code program to provide more information to visitors regarding Ste. Genevieve’s architectural treasures and historical uniqueness. Utilize free social media marketing tools to enhance brand awareness and create programs to increase visits to Ste. Genevieve. Description: Work with mobile web site developers to create a mobile web site. Develop the site to mimic the new tourism website and provide information in a format that will be accessible for all internet accessible mobile devices. Create a QR Code program that will include a walking tour map, QR Codes for privately owned homes and information about each site on the walking tour.Continue to promote Ste. Genevieve area and events via Facebook and Twitter, increase presence on Four Square and work with regional attractions to create Four Square badges to increase visits.Using each of these technologies, capture information for future push marketing efforts. Budget: Ste. Genevieve City Tourism Budget, Ste. Genevieve County Commission Budget, Community Development Foundation Grant and additional grant opportunities as they become available. Anticipated Expense: $8000+ for development of mobile web site and QR Code program. Target audience: Internet mobile users age 45-65 who own a vehicle, homeowners and an average household income of at least $75,000. Tourism motivations may include French colonial architecture, culture, and/or history; Missouri history; Mississippi River history and lore; family connections (genealogy); antiques; wineries; outdoor recreation; technology activities (geo-caching), as well as new dining, lodging, and shopping opportunities.
  • 13. Ste. Genevieve Department of Tourism FY2013 Marketing Plan – Page 13 Budget Anticipated Revenue Summary Ste. Genevieve Department of Tourism $30,000 2% Tourism Tax $16,000 Cooperative Marketing Program Grant $49,559.69 Ste. Genevieve County Commission (requested) $25,000 TOTAL ANTICIPATED FUNDING FOR FY2013 $120,559.69 Evaluation Evaluation activities will be carried out with assistance from the University of Missouri Extension office and partner organizations. Evaluation method 1: Monitor annual changes in Ste. Genevieve County taxable sales within tourism-related dollars. Data is gathered by the Missouri Department of Revenue. Evaluation method 2: Monitor annual changes in City of Ste. Genevieve lodging tax and tourism-related business tax revenues. Evaluation method 3: Monitor changes in individual and group visitor counts and Passport sales, as gathered by the Ste. Genevieve Welcome Center. Include analyzing visitor point of origin data. Evaluation method 4: Obtain data on web site and cell phone downloaded applications. Evaluation method 5: Track number of “Passports” purchased and percentages of increased/decreased foot traffic and revenue. __________________________________________________________________________________________