MEMORANDUM TO: Richard Benda
DATE: May 16, 2008
FROM: Melissa Bump
SUBJECT: Tourism’s April Monthly Status Report
Or, review Tourism's April Summary Report
Sent mailing to 3,000 visitor industry businesses to build the agri-tourism database.
Updated the YouTube site with Tourism’s six new 2008 TV spots. Added video of prairie chickens in the grasslands to YouTube.
Continued online profile at MyRagan.com and at Linkedin.com, websites for public relations professionals.
Fulfilled requests from My Home magazine, Cooking Light magazine, Outside magazine, USA Today, TravelMeredith.com, Sturgis Rally coordinators, and inquiries from MediaSD. Interviewed by KOTA radio (10 Natural Wonders in South Dakota, Eco-tourism, In Your Own Backyard press release series); Black Hills Pioneer (adventure sports); Media Matin Quebec newspaper (Black Hills, Mount Rushmore National Memorial, National Treasure: Book of Secrets); and made arrangements with Prairie Business magazine for interviews with Secretary of the Department and the Director of Tourism.
Conducted media blitzes in Washington, DC and New York City and discussed possible South Dakota editorial/story ideas with National Geographic, USA Today, Arthur Frommer’s Budget Travel magazine; IgoUgo.com, Travel + Leisure GOLF magazine, and Country Living magazine.
Worked on See South Dakota Week, May 10-18, preparations which included setting up media interviews in Sioux Falls, Watertown, Mitchell, Aberdeen, Yankton, Pierre, and Rapid City. Working with Governor’s Office on a Web cast kickoff that will include the Governor and/or Lt. Governor.
Posted press releases: To in-state media (posted to MediaSD.com and the State News Web): “Office of Tourism to Launch Online Hospitality Training,” “Enhanced Tourism Web Site Promotes South Dakota Campgrounds,” and “New Golf Guide Available.” In Your Own Backyard releases: “Brookings ‘Opens Doors’ to Culture and History,” “Scrap, Sculptures, Dinosaurs and more: Grand River Museum,” “More than a Chapel in the Hills,” “Rushmore Borglum Story,” and “Experience Native American Culture in Chamberlain.” Posted six industry releases to MediaSD.
Continued working with Rapid City on the Society of American Travel Writers conference, May 14-18. Tourism is helping host a dinner and helping with transportation.
Held first planning meeting for the 2009 Governor’s Conference on Tourism; discussed schedule, speaker bios, and session topics.
Created a full-color, half-page ad for the summer 2008 Midwest Meetings magazine as part of the co-op with the Association of CVBs.
Sent Travel Professionals E-Newsletter to 160 list members – tour operators, travel agents, and meeting and event planners.
Assisted travel agents and regional directors from MLT World Vacations; AAA offices in California, New York, Pennsylvania, Texas, Iowa, Washington, Oklahoma, Kentucky, Ohio, Minnesota, and Minneapolis; plus Abbott Travel and Carlson Wagonlit.
Sent requested tour information to Retail Tours, Ohio; Bob Christensen, Sandra McGee, Iowa; Charles Roessler, Colorado; Travel Concepts, Nebraska; and Chen-Martin Travel, California.
Coordinated and attended the trade blitz in Omaha, March 31 - April 4. Partners were from the Black Hills, Badlands & Lakes Association and Sioux Falls CVB. Visited with 30 travel agents and tour operators in the Omaha, Lincoln, and Sioux City areas.
Continued to work on details for the upcoming Western Hospitality Fam Tour: A Travel Agent Fam Tour of South Dakota, May 17 – 24, which will be limited to 45 participants. Stops include Watertown, Sioux Falls, De Smet, Pierre, Murdo, Badlands National Park, Wall, Black Hills National Forrest, Deadwood, Spearfish, Hill City, Mount Rushmore National Memorial, Crazy Horse Memorial, Custer State Park, and Chamberlain.
Continued to work with Minnesota on 2Nation Tours Fam Tour, June 2-8, with stops in eastern South Dakota and southwestern Minnesota. Have had inquiries from 14 companies as a result of the Save-the-Date postcard that was mailed to 1,200 tour operators and group leaders who have requested 2Nation Tours Fam information.
Attended the Active America Travel Summit in Detroit, which focused on ways to increase Japanese group tour traffic to the United States. Of the 31 high producing tour operators who were invited to attend the summit, 18 showed great interest in South Dakota. We ranked second in interest level, surpassed only by Las Vegas.
Researched and requested 100 appointments with tour operators at the Travel Industry Association of America (TIA) Pow Wow, May 31-June 4, in Las Vegas; provided updates to South Dakota participants.
Attended Rocky Mountain International (RMI) Summit meeting with overseas staff, Tourism staff, partner states, and gateway/partner cities to plan FY09 marketing. For the RMI Roundup, held caucus for 18 South Dakota suppliers representing 23 businesses to review tour operator information; met with 39 tour operators. Held post-familiarization tour in partnership with South Dakota suppliers for 11 tour operators.
Coordinated with the RMI Office in the United Kingdom regarding a fam for Hannah Dunleavy. Drafted itinerary for writer Walter Kreuzer, Germany, for June 5-9.
Continued working on press fam/itinerary for Mottotourismo, Italy, for their editor and assistant editor for a motorcycle tour, June 15-23. Tour will appear in a catalog and a magazine article and TV program will promote the motorcycle routes.
Confirmed arrangements for the June Japanese Group Tour Fam itinerary for 10 tour operators. Stops include attractions in the Black Hills, Badlands National Park, Rapid City, Pierre, De Smet, and Mitchell.
Contacted by Poul Hedemann, Danish journalist, who is interested in visiting South Dakota on a press trip in September to Mount Rushmore National Memorial and the Black Hills.
Prepared fishing hot line for Great Lakes and Glacial Lakes & Prairies associations to update fishing hot spots for consumers.
Continued working with contact at Pheasants Forever on a media hunt on CRP land in the Aberdeen area.
Have been working with Gary Sefton to plan turkey hunt east of Rapid City/west of Interior for writers.
Continued working with the Sioux Falls CVB on the Professional Outdoor Media Conference (POMA), July 30 - August 2. Continued discussions with POMA representatives to organize a fishing tournament the day before the conference; working with Yankton CVB on details.
Media of note: Television – Wingshooting Adventures on The Sportsman’s Channel – result of hosting Lisa Metheny (earned); Travel Channel, Black Hills treasures – here during fireworks in 2007 (unearned); and Kent Hrbek Outdoors, Buffalo Roundup (earned). Print – Western Outdoor News, Spring Snow Goose Hunt (earned); Omaha World Herald, Chinook Salmon Fishing on Lake Oahe (unearned); and Indiana Outdoor News, Pheasant Hunting (earned). A radio interview will air in June – seven minute interview on “The Big Wild” Radio Show, Wisconsin, on outdoor opportunities.
Fulfilled requests for information from a turkey hunter in Minnesota; hunter from Illinois regarding a fall deer hunt in South Dakota; gentleman from Minnesota regarding a bicycling trip; man from Alabama on camping; a wildlife photographer; SD Walleye Classic information to a writer at the Great Lakes Basin Publications; ice fishing for walleyes in South Dakota; Alan Clemons with the Hunstville Gazette regarding fishing on the Missouri; photos of walleyes to Kevin Woster for his blog; stock footage and photos to Russell Graves, Outdoor Writers Association of America; prairie dog hunting to Glenn Helgeland, Target Communications; John Motoviloff, contact information for waterfowl/wildlife biologists in South Dakota; Bob Willis, writer from Colorado, information on the Buffalo Roundup; and quotes on CRP and pheasant hunting in South Dakota to Steve Smith, Editor of the Traveling Wingshooter.
Received a call from Pete Lien with the Young Presidents Organization, a group of business presidents from around the country. This group has an interest in hunting and fishing, so they are taking a trip to South Dakota. Lien is one of two members who lives in South Dakota and who is organizing the trip. Forwarded his information to GOED for follow-up and assistance to this group.
Spoke to Jack Baker, President North American Ice Fishing Championship, and Jeff Snell, Webster Chamber, about the possibility of hosting an ice fishing tournament in January 2009. Referred them to the Million Dollar Challenge application.
Working with Bill Scherk, Ron Schara Enterprises in Minnesota for their “Due North Outdoors” TV show, to put together a trip for the end of May. Itinerary will include ATV trails in the Black Hills. Spoke to Tyna Bowers about promoting the ATV Rally in the Black Hill this year and provided her with contact information for Scherk. Referred Bowers to the Million Dollar Challenge application.
Updated listings on FilmSD.com.
Fulfilled requests for film production information and tax refund Information.
Attended Association of Film Commissioners International (AFCI) Locations Trade Show in Santa Monica and manned a booth with other partners in the Film the West group of states. While there, met with Disney representative to discuss film incentive possibilities.
Continued working on design of the 44-page Film Office Production Guide. Plan to send to printer in May with delivery of guides in June.
Accepted Lesa Jarding’s letter of resignation.
Met with the four regional tourism directors to discuss Great Service Star logo as several listings in the Vacation Guide use the old logo. Fulfilled requests to regional directors for a black and white version of the new Star logo.
Compiled information on statewide hospitality training workshops for press release and sent list to all CVBs and full-time Chambers.
Wrote press release on the online curriculum and Train the Trainer (TTT) workshops which are designed to instruct people on the online program so that they can promote and oversee usage of the program. The TTT workshops are being coordinated by Black Hills State University. Made presentation at the annual meeting of the Great Lakes region on the online hospitality training and the TTT workshops.
Total January Inquiries:
Internet (e-mail): 16,552
For fiscal year 2008, there is an overall increase in inquiries of 18% percent over FY2007
Fulfilled requests for photos/slides to Lawrence and Schiller, KSFY TV, Outdoor Campus, Regency Management, Sioux Falls; Game, Fish and Parks, Department of Health, Public Utilities Commission, South Dakota Lottery, Department of Education, Pierre; Watertown CVB; Holiday Inn Express, Fort Pierre; Hot Springs Chamber of Commerce; Chamberlain/Oacoma Chamber of Commerce; Custer State Park; Buffalo Chip Campground, SturgisMotorcycleRally.com, Sturgis; Labyrinth Films, Aberdeen; Rapid City Weekly News, HMS Enterprises, Rapid City; Western Horseman magazine, American Cowboy magazine, 5280 Magazine, Colorado; National Geographic Adventure magazine, Washington, DC; Prairie Business magazine, North Dakota; American Products Publishing, Maryland; Inked magazine, California; Varr Travel, Texas; and Rocky Mountain International, Germany.
Fulfilled video requests: Sent video of the Chamberlain hydroplanes to KSFY in Sioux Falls for a spot they are producing for Chamberlain. Dubbed a German TV show on south Dakota, result of hosting.
Made video and audio versions of Giant Step and Great Getaways partners as well as still clips of each and posted on the TravelSD website.
Finalized and shipped the following for peak: Giant Step (1-page) Badlands magazine ad – Travel 50 & Beyond on sale June 20; My Home regional magazine, distributed April 23; Golfing ad for Appleton Golf Guide insert, distributed April 24; Fishing ad for Outdoor Life on sale May 27; newspaper ads in Eau Claire, Milwaukee, Omaha, Des Moines, Gannett group (Green Bay, Appleton, Oshkosh, Sheboygan, Fond due Lac, Manitowoc), Minneapolis, St Paul, Worthington, Omaha, and Sioux City; Deadwood Co-op newspaper ads in Denver, Minneapolis, Casper, Cheyenne, and Sioux Falls; Deadwood FSI – inserts in the Casper Star Tribune May 4, Wyoming Tribune Eagle May 4, Minneapolis Star Tribune April 27, and Denver Post April 27; Deadwood Advertorial #2 for Denver Post; Official Deadwood Guide; Rapid City Co-op newspaper ads in Minneapolis, St. Paul, St Cloud, Denver, Ft. Collins, and Sioux Falls; Rapid City Advertorial for Denver Post; Rapid City Video on Demand; Custer State Park Co-op newspaper ads in Ft Collins, Greeley, SW Minnesota, and Sioux Falls; Custer State Park Co-op spring newspaper ads in the Rapid City Journal; Minnesota Great Neighbor campaign email message from the Governor; 4th of July Vacation Giveaway promotion landing page and banner ad for Omaha.com; TravelSD/camping page; Travelsmart – April issue; and Glacial Lakes Co-op postcard.
Notified winner of the Custer State Park Memorial Day Reunion package giveaway from Minnesota. Notified package partners.
Printed 40,000 copies of the Golf South Dakota publication; 14,000 were delivered to the South Dakota Golf Association as their share of the co-op; and sent a supply to the 10 golf courses that purchased ad space. Will add golf courses that did not appear in the print version to the PDF version on TravelSD.
Routed copy of the 2008 Great Lakes Birding Guide to the three in-state partners. Files are due to the printer in May with delivery in June.
Requested maps for the 2008 Motorcycle Guide from Game, Fish & Parks. Piece is due to the printer the end of May with delivery of the guides in late June.
Continued working on updates and new design of the Native South Dakota publication. Plan to send files to the printer in mid-June; planned delivery is in July.
Worked on copy and free listings for The South Dakota Treasures, Cultural & Heritage publication. Plan to send files to the printer in early June; delivery of final piece is in July.
On TravelSD.com: Visitor Services Directory has 5,177 entries; and 96 vacation packages are listed for 17 cities in addition to the Black Hills in general. Ten hot deals are currently running. From March 24 to April 29, 49 e-postcards were sent by consumers.
Renewed the SouthDakota.travel and the TravelSD.travel domain names with Encirca for one more year.
Placed Great Getaways partners under “Travel Partners” on TravelSD.com and added search and sort features. Of the 2008 peak partners, 17 are also Giant Step partners. Sized photos for the other 33 partners and encoded their copy; added PDFs for the nine partners who submitted them.
Worked on elements of the Fourth of July (TravelSD.com/BlackHills) package giveaway and placed registration form, rules, and landing page on the Web. Working with Omaha.com on the promotion.
Met with industry members regarding the film office; established preliminary goals for legislation and research.
Briefed the Interstate Information Center supervisors on findings from the Intercept Study and car counts in 2007, reviewed the Online Reporting System for research purposes, and discussed the reasons for changing the hours of operation.
Reviewed the performances of the three different landing pages for the Minnesota promotion and deactivated two.
Participated in discussions about the plans for the See South Dakota Week/tax rebate promotion as well as the gas card giveaway; Webpage(s) need to go live on Friday, May 9.
GREAT EVENTS 2008:
Governor's Tourism Advisory Board
Governor's Invitational Pheasant Hunt
Czech Days, Tabor – June 19-21: Sent oversized postcards to committee database. Continued working with the Media/Public Relations team and the event committee on a project that involves the screening of a documentary, filmed in 2007.
Oahe Days, Pierre – June 20-22: Marketing projects have been completed, except for the newspaper ads which are due in May.
Festival of Presidents, Rapid City – June 27-28: Received approval from local committee on newspaper ads which will be placed in May.
Mickelson Trail Trek, Black Hills (Outdoor Event) – September 19-21: Have acquired database for mailing of 12,000 event postcards in May.
Hill City Western Heritage Festival, Hill City – September 20-21: Will final magazine ad and place in May. Newspaper ads are due for placement in August.