Manny Cortez, President & CEO, Las Vegas Convention & Visitors
Charles Gargano, Chairman & CEO, Empire State Development
Manny Stamatakis, Board Member, Philadelphia Convention & Visitors
Bob Taubman, Chairman & CEO, The Taubman Company
U.S. Department of Commerce Staff:
Doug Baker, Deputy Assistant Secretary, Service Industries, Tourism
Helen Marano, Director, Office of Travel and Tourism Industries,
Isabel Hill, Deputy Director, Policy Development and Planning
Julie Heizer, Deputy Director, Industry Relations
- Call to Order
Designated Federal Officer, Julie Heizer, officially called
the meeting to order at 10:00 a.m. and turned the proceedings
over to Chair Jay Rasulo.
Chair Rasulo welcomed the Board members, their designees and
guests to the fourth meeting of the Travel and Tourism Promotion
Advisory Board, and laid out the basic agenda for the day’s
- Overview of Program Objectives
Deputy Assistant Secretary, Douglas B. Baker, thanked Chair
Rasulo and the Board members for their attendance at the meeting.
At the time of the December meeting, there was a potential
rescission of the program’s funding. That process played
out and there were two different rescission provisions that
affected the Department of Commerce in its entirety. After the
Omnibus Spending Bill was passed and signed, this program was
left with just over six million dollars ($6,000,000).
Staff continued the procurement process, even in the face of
rescission uncertainties, interviewed bidding firms, and their
subsequent written proposals, and ultimately made a selection.
Following the consensus recommendation of the Travel and Tourism
Promotion Advisory Board, the Office of Travel and Tourism Industries
and the new contract team will focus their efforts in the United
Kingdom only. The U.K. continues to be America’s largest
overseas market, so it makes sense for this pilot program to
be launched there.
The office has been careful throughout the process to keep
the procurement and review on the same path as had originally
been laid out for the larger, five market campaign. It was critical
to select a firm capable of carrying the campaign into the other
four markets so that if new monies become available, they could
be folded right into this contract without having to face a
new procurement action.
The objectives of the campaign remain the same: increase visitation
to U.S. from target markets, increase economic benefits from
visitation, increase interest and future intent to visit the
U.S. and to increase the positive perception of the U.S. as
a travel destination.
One of the challenges as a federal agency is to make sure that
the campaign is emblematic of the United States as a whole and
to create a program that allows everyone to participate.
The contract was awarded to the well-known public relations
firm, Edelman (Chicago), who will serve as the primary contractor.
They came to this process with a consortium of other organizations
under the umbrella of “Visit America Alliance.”
The other organizations that will be working with Edelman on
the various aspects of the promotion and marketing campaign
are M&C Saatchi (Los Angeles), BVK International (Miami),
and Walker Media (London).
What will be presented at the meeting is a draft of the strategic
direction and marketing plan that has been developed by Edelman,
its partners, and DOC staff. In addition, representatives of
several TTPAB members provided their expertise and advice through
the procurement process. While their assistance is greatly appreciated,
it should not be viewed as an endorsement of what will be presented.
- Overview of Procurement Process
Helen Marano, Director, Office of Travel and Tourism Industries,
U.S. Department of Commerce, thanked everyone who had been involved
in the procurement process.
The DOC, through the empowered procurement team, worked very
hard to expedite the cumbersome procurement process. DOC’s
procurement office had outlined that a multi-million dollar
procurement would take 12-18 months to complete. Because an
empowered procurement team was developed, and because all the
members of the team were dedicated to working closely and efficiently
throughout the process, a Request for Quotation (RFQ) was issued
on December 18th. An adjusted RFQ was issued shortly after the
first of the year. Bidders first submitted their qualifications
package. Oral presentations were scheduled with those most likely
to be awarded the contract. Subsequently, best and final written
proposals were submitted for review and scoring. The contract
was awarded on March 18th, nearly three months to the day of
the original RFQ having been published. DOC’s procurement
office at the National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Administration
said it was the quickest procurement action they have ever completed.
The criteria originally designed for assessing the “best
and final” written proposals for the five-market program
were kept intact, requiring that the selected firm have previous
experience with and be capable of developing and implementing
multinational consumer campaigns. The criteria also indicated
that the contract would be awarded to a firm whose capability
and experience, together with their proposed marketing program,
would deliver the best value to the government. The contract
was awarded in keeping with this criteria by a selection panel
on the basis of the offerors’ written proposals, in keeping
with procurement law.
The time and energy expended by the TTPAB representatives helped
refine the final selection process, and the procurement team
is grateful for their assistance.
The Department of Commerce celebrates the award of this contract
to Edelman and its Visit America Alliance partners. As was mentioned
earlier by Mr. Baker, M&C Saatchi, Los Angeles, will lead
the advertising portion of the campaign, BVK, based in Milwaukee,
will manage the cooperative program, and Edelman, Chicago, of
course, will lead the team and the public relations initiatives,
as well. Both M&C Saatchi and Edelman are also going to
be working with their offices in London, as well.
The first task order under the contract is the development
of the strategic marketing plan being outlined by Edelman and
the Visit America Alliance. OTTI staff and the VAA team have
met with the Commercial Service officers and the Visit USA Association
U.K. board of directors in London, and have had additional meetings
with representatives from the Travel Industry Association of
America as well as from other industry and government partners.
In unveiling the strategic framework, Ms. Marano asked those
present to keep in mind this is not a completed marketing plan
or program. The final plan will reflect additional input from
the members of the TTPAB, the industry, destination marketing
organizations, and other government stakeholders. The mission
statement of the U.K. promotion program is: “to do that
which others can not do and to leverage which others are already
Ms. Marano then introduced Cathleen Johnson, co-director of
- Draft Strategic Plan Presentation
Ms. Johnson outlined the composition of the Visit America
Alliance. Edelman’s tourism practice is based in Chicago,
and will serve as the lead for this work. M&C Saatchi is
one of the fastest-growing advertising agencies in the world,
and Edelman is fortunate to be working with their tourism experts,
Huw Griffith and Kate Bristow, whose offices are located in
Los Angeles. Likewise, when looking for a leading cooperative
marketing development organization, Edelman was fortunate to
entice BVK to the table, and working with the group will be
Mary DeLong from BVK’s Tampa office. The media-buying
component of the program will be managed by Walker Media in
London and Longwoods International will be handling the research
Some of the team’s clients include:
Airlines: British Airways, Qantas, Ted
Destinations: Tourism New Zealand, Puerto Rico Tourism
Company, Beaches of Ft. Myers and Sanibel, State of Illinois
Department of Tourism
Cruise Companies: NCL Cruises, Crystal Cruises
Hotels: Mandarin Oriental, InterContinental Hotel Group,
Online Travel: Expedia
Tour Operators: The Mark Travel Corporation
Entertainment: Motion Picture Association of America,
The USA Tourism Management Team consists of: Cathleen
Johnson, Project Manager (Edleman), Huw Griffith,
Co-Project Manager (M&C Saatchi), Kate Bristow,
Advertising Director (M&C Saatchi), Mary DeLong,
Co-op Advertising Director (BVK), Sarah Devaney and Nigel Breakwell,
PR Directors, Neal Flieger and Toby McCarrick, Administration
Managers (Edelman), Stephen McCall, UK Advertising, Alan Jarvie
and Mitch Markson, Creative Directors (M&C Saatchi), and
Ferris Thompson, Entertainment Director (Edelman).
As outlined to the Visit America Alliance, the Challenge of
the project is:
To increase inbound travel to the United States, initially from
the United Kingdom, and eventually from Germany, Japan, Canada
As stated earlier by Mr. Baker, the objectives of the program
- Increase visitation to U.S. from target markets
- Increase economic benefits from visitation
- Increase interest and future intent to visit the US.
- Increase positive perception of the U.S. as a travel destination
Ms. Johnson introduced Kate Bristow, M&C Saatchi, who outlined
the strategic platforms from which the group operated when developing
Looking at the Consumer target audiences, the Alliance will
focus the programs on those British travelers who show a predisposition
to long-haul travel:
- ABC1: Top half of UK population including the key BC1 audience
- Ages range from 25 to 54
- Annual household income of $72,000+
In addition to this base, secondary targets would include:
- C1C2s families – likely to be repeat visitors
- Last minute bookers, who tend to be young singles
- The Travel Trade
Everyone in the travel and tourism industry knows that the
competitive landscape is extremely tough. There is an estimated
$540 million competitive spend in the United Kingdom alone.
Of that, long-haul tourist boards annually spend $38 million
trying to attract British travelers to their destinations.
Working with a $4 million media buy, America’s share
of voice would be approximately 10% in the long haul market.
Current consumer insights include the following “truths”:
- Everyone is looking for inspiration for where to take the
- Familiarity with a place creates a desire to visit.
- It’s a much greater experience when one actually
visits a place you’ve seen on the TV or in a brochure.
In looking at brand insight, particularly as it pertains to
the U.K. market, U.S. entertainment is one of America’s
biggest exports and is an every day part of people’s lives.
The Brits have a huge appetite for “Entertainment USA.”
Nearly 150 hours of U.S. television and film broadcast on the
five main UK TV stations per week. Some of the “American
staples” are: ER, Frasier, and Sex and the City.
Recent American movies that have aired in the U.K. include
“Spiderman,” “Oceans Eleven,” and “Maid
in Manhattan.” Four out of five movies playing at any
one time in the U.K. are U.S. productions.
Entertainment unifies and inspires. The British have issues
with some things American…but they all love the films,
TV shows, books, music and the culture. Familiarity with the
sights and sounds of America breeds desire. Interestingly, according
to a recent MORI poll, over 25% of Britons would like to live
in the USA.
When developing the Creative Strategy for this campaign, the
VAA team was driven by one precept: Brutally Simple Thinking.
Consumer Insight (Vacationers are inspired by things they’ve
seen but not yet experienced) added to Brand Insight (Every
day the USA entertainment industry showcases America to the
British public) equals a Call to Action (Visit the USA and Experience
it for Real).
The VAA team felt it boiled down to a simple statement: Evocative
movies inspire action. The creative strategy, then, became:
Capitalize on the strong affinity the British already have for
American popular culture and reawaken a desire to experience
it for themselves
“Lord of the Rings” has increased overseas visitation
to New Zealand by 11% over the last 3 years, and has helped
boost New Zealand tourism earnings by US$130 million.
Other notable examples: Kansas and the Dakotas continue to
benefit from Dances With Wolves, Savannah, Georgia from Midnight
in the Garden of Good and Evil, and Dyersville, Iowa remains
as visitors’ Field of Dreams.
Huw Griffith, Co-Director of the VAA Team, presented the draft
creative work. From their experience, and likely from many in
the room’s experience as well, it is notoriously difficult
to produce great tourism advertising. A lot of questions arise
as to how effective and indeed memorable a lot of it really
is. The Alliance partners went through and reviewed the major
advertisers in the marketplace. At best, it is confusing as
to who is who. It is a smorgasbord of sometimes beautiful photographs
of places, activities and smiling people enjoying themselves.
However, it all ends up looking quite generic. The Alliance
partners thought it would be very easy to fall into the same
trap, given the sheer scale and offers available throughout
However, they are very happy the U.S. has one thing no one
else has. Because American TV shows and movies are so prevalent
in the U.K. market, those images are already being used as “advertising”
for the USA. The whole country is a vast and diverse film set
that appears as a shining backdrop to so may of the movies the
British watch and love. Viewers can conjure up that feeling
of standing on a New York street with the yellow taxis flying
by, see the steam rising from the pavement or standing in a
deserted town with the sagebrush rolling down the street, or
indeed drinking coffee in a favorite café or diner.
The power is to sell the “real experience.” This
is where the simple creative idea was derived. No other country
can own or invoke this feeling. The idea is to use this as a
backdrop to the call to action – summed up in a simple
campaign line: “You’ve Seen the Film, Now Visit
So much of what will be shown will be familiar to the viewer,
but the team feels it will act as the “driving line”
to inspire consumers to action. (The numbers of people who have
visited “Middle Earth” in New Zealand have not just
been Tolkien fans!) VAA believes this line is ultimately flexible
as well, be it a film, TV show, book, music, or other reference
to popular American culture. The aim is to have this line picked
up by cooperative partners as well, who can then use it in their
They have also developed a mnemonic device: “Unmissable
Spectacular America.” Unmissable is a very British word,
used to describe films that cannot and should not be missed.
“Spectacular” is also very positive and is a great
descriptor. We hope that this, too, will be picked up and used
by the program’s partners in a variety of appropriate
Mr. Griffith said a call to action is crucial and integral
to the campaign. They want to be able to work with and leverage
what is already available and working well in the U.K. As a
result, the VAA team is already in discussion with the Travel
Industry Association of America and the Visit USA Association
United Kingdom regarding potential “calls to action.”
(For the purposes of the creative presentation, www.visitusanow.com
and a fake phone number were used, more as “placeholders”
than anything else.)
While it’s too early to state definitively, the aim of
the program will likely be to drive consumer traffic to both
a website and a consumer telephone line. Future announcements
about these discussions will be forthcoming.
The simple creative idea that he presented is still at the
conceptual stage. The images chosen are all from movies, which,
as was explained, would not be the limitation in the final creative.
The images are “screen grabs,” which do not present
the quality that would be realized in the actual work. In addition,
what was presented were not the definitive images that would
be used. More testing and negotiation will be needed before
the actual visuals, etc., are finalized. Research is critical,
and, in fact, has already impacted the visual work that is being
Brand television will be crucial to set the scene and establish
the vastness and diversity of the USA. They will set the stage
and the backdrop for the balance of the campaign. The montage
of clips used will be emotional, the ads may well have a specially
composed musical score riding underneath. The VAA team will
look to develop both a :50 and a :30 second version of the ad.
(Draft :50 spot was shown.)
Supporting the television spots, careful use of both outdoor
billboards and underground (subway) station posters will be
included. (Variety of possible billboards and posters was shown.)
In addition, the look and feel of the “big impact”
media will be reinforced by color print advertising that will
utilize a variety of formats as well. (Several color print iterations
were shown, including several variations that would make use
of cooperative industry partnerships.)
The “Brand USA” Framework takes into account the
“big picture” thinking that starts when a consumer
generally determines what kind of destination holiday they want.
The framework then provides the consumer with “pillars”
of choice that coincide with the specific themes being touted
by the campaign – shopping, family, outdoor, culture/heritage.
Those pillars then lead the consumer to determine “I want
that now,” at which stage the private sector stands ready
to sell the consumer U.S. travel and tourism products.
Since part of the original brief for the program was for the
campaign to be implemented in five countries, the Visit America
Alliance team also did some basic research into whether or not
the theme line, “You’ve Seen the Film. Now visit
the set” would work in the other languages. Fortunately,
with the help of VAA offices around the globe, Mr. Griffith
said he was pleased to report that this theme line translated
to the other key languages in a very easy manner, while maintaining
the strength of the message.
As was mentioned previously, some testing has already been
done, and early indications show positive response.
- Using the idiom of films proving to be a powerful trigger
– distinctive American phenomena
- Generates considerable empathy and involvement
- Shows strong potential to encourage people to reconsider
the States as a desirable holiday destination
Some of the comments from the early focus groups were:
- “This advertising has moved us beyond the way
we normally thought of the States, and all the clichés
and ‘biggest is best’”
- “This is showing us another side and that there
is lots more to see”
- “You feel you are walking in the same path as
Moving on specifically to the media buy, the primary objective
is: To stimulate people to reappraise the USA as a vacation
- The media strategy will include:
- Design a campaign that creates authority and energy
- Requires a wave of activity rather than ongoing noise
- Careful timing and instant mass reach of our audience led
by the most engaging medium
Television would be used as the lead medium because:
- Only medium to reach 62% of our audience in any one week
- Highly efficient
- Buying the best programming: at least 80% of our airtime
will appear in peak
- High reach and frequency amongst both hard-to-reach ABs
as well as C1C2s, and the travel trade
Additional media will include national print that helps create
a “surround sound” presence in the marketplace and
is an ideal media for cooperative partner involvement. In addition,
London outdoor media will be utilized because the audience is
75% more likely than the average UK adult to use the tube; the
London Underground is an ideal (contrasting) environment to
deliver the program’s message; and premium roadside sites
reach a large audience and create “fame.”
There is also one tentative cooperative partnership already
underway with Blockbuster. They are interested in working with
the U.S. government to develop an in-store promotion linking
the campaign to major US movies. There are more than 700 stores
in the U.K. that service millions of movie renters. Details
are being worked out, but there is a variety of opportunities
available on this exciting promotion.
In a very broad sense, the media plan is then outlined to include
travel trade press beginning this summer; followed by the Blockbuster
promotion, a national television campaign, national magazine
and newspaper advertisements, and the outdoor and underground
posters. These components would support one another beginning
in late fall and moving into and through the winter.
Ms. Johnson briefly outlined the financial side of the program.
70% of the budget will be utilized for the media buy. The VAA
Alliance has kept their fees to a minimum, as well as production
cost estimates, which were shown as eight percent of the total
budget. The public relations budget is smaller than perhaps
is usual, but is within reasonable limits, and research and
evaluation stands at four percent of total.
Measurement is an important component of the program, and is
currently envisioned as being accomplished in four separate
- Qualitative Strategic and Creative testing – 8 focus
groups in UK
- Benchmark Study in May – 500+ consumers
- Post-campaign benchmark study – 1200+ UK consumers
- Both the pre- and post-campaign studies will utilize Longwoods
International Accountability Model
- PR Evaluation
Ms. Johnson then presented the draft cooperative program that
has been developed by the Alliance in response to the original
request for proposal.
The US cooperative program designed to:
- Affect consideration of U.S. as a preferred destination
- Enhance planning
- Motivate partner-direct bookings
- Enhance – not duplicate – existing programs
- Meet the needs of a wide spectrum of potential partners
The Alliance members believe there is extensive partner potential
in this component of the program. By utilizing Travel Industry
Stakeholders, the Entertainment Industry and Non-traditional Partners,
a very large partner pool including some of the world’s
most sophisticated and well-funded marketers is brought to the
table for the cooperative component of the promotion program.
The Alliance recommends the following cooperative strategic approach:
- Government Initiated Programs – government-directed
and placed umbrella
programs; multi-medium and multi-discipline; wide range of participation
- Stakeholder Initiated Programs – provides formal system
for stakeholders to
propose partnership programs for stakeholder-directed and placed
programs; strict requirements and ROI guidelines
- Custom Programs – custom developed, integrated, multi-partner
programs jointly developed through one-on-one meetings
The cooperative component of the program needs to be more fully
developed, and additional details will be presented at future
Ms. Johnson then outlined the public relations strategies that
will be utilized to fulfill this campaign. The Alliance members
determined the primary goals of the public relations component
of the campaign to be:
- Rally UK and U.S. tourism industry
- Build pre-campaign momentum
- Pique consumer interest and build excitement
- Support and extend advertising – bridge the gap between
- Secure partnerships to extend dollars
Work for the PR campaign will be accomplished in phases, tentatively
outlined as follows:
- Phase I
- April - June
- Trade outreach – preview campaign; secure buy-in
- Identify, reach and influence last-minute travelers to
drive summer bookings
- Leverage trends, e.g. exchange rate
- Educate audiences about security issues
- Phase II – Campaign Launch, June
- Announce at SeeAmerica Week, London
- Launch aggressive media relations campaign
- Begin familiarization trip program
- Build partnerships to drive awareness and traffic
- Media, U.S. destinations and attractions/ tour operators,
- Phase III – Fall, 2004
- Launch, support and extend advertising campaign
- “Directors Chairs” – celebrity tour
guides to support creative
In addition, a good public relations organization recognizes
that while no one likes to think about the need for a crisis plan,
it is nonetheless one of the most important things to have if
and when it becomes needed. As such, Edelman has developed a Five-Step
Crisis & Issues Management Plan as part of their work. This
five-step process includes:
- Issues planning/assessment
- Planning review
- Develop issue management protocol
- Build armory of communication materials
- Testing and validation
Ms. Johnson stated that the “team” approach utilized
by the members of the Visit America Alliance provides them with
some interesting foundations upon which they have begun their
work on behalf of the U.S. government.
- Not limited by discipline
- Advertising, PR, DM, online
- Not limited by geography
- U.S. entertainment travels the globe
- Not limited by imagination
- Harnessing the power of the most creative business in
Their proposed timing for the campaign is:
- April/May: Development of marketing plan
- May/June: Benchmarking, strategic and creative research; early
- June 21-25: Launch of campaign during See America Week
- June/July: Initial public relations and advertising activity
concentrated towards the travel trade and last minute bookers,
to encourage summer 2004 travel bookings
- Fall/Winter: ‘Brand USA’ advertising/public relations/cooperative
marketing program underway to pre-dispose UK consumers prior to
key booking period Dec/Jan/Feb
Mr. Baker thanked Ms. Johnson, Mr. Griffith and Ms. Bristow,
as well as the other members of the team who were both present
at the meeting and back in their offices around the globe, for
the thorough presentation. He said he hoped their work gave those
in attendance a sense of where the pilot U.K. promotion program
is headed. He requested that additional suggestions or questions
about the presentation or the program itself be directed to him
and/or Helen Marano.
He concluded by saying the marketing plan will be finalized in
June and disseminated to the Board at that time.
- Board Discussion
Mr. Rasulo also thanked the team for their presentation and opened
the meeting to the members of the Board for their comments.
Bob Taubman asked if any consideration had been given to seeking
tax benefits for the costs for usage rights and production costs.
Ms. Johnson said that all costs were included in the production
costs as outlined, at approximately $465,000.
Mr. Rasulo said that endorsements and dollars will separate quickly.
Studios will do this for free, nor will celebrities participate
for free. He didn’t know if tax benefits could be offered.
He also commented that none of the private sector would suggest
a cost break-down as was outlined by the VAA team. He asked why
travel was going to cost more than $1 million dollars. Ms. Johnson
responded that he must have read the chart incorrectly, as travel
expenses are estimated at $70,000 (approximately one percent of
the total budget).
Charles Gargano said that the strategy as outlined is a good
one. Evaluation is so important, particularly as those who approve
budgets want to know the effectiveness of the campaign. Utilizing
four percent for research is very important to continue.
Manny Stamatakis said money should be allocated based on how
much cooperative/partnership leveraging can be done. An important
test will be if constituencies want to participate, and therefore
provide the opportunity for the Board and the U.S. government
representatives to be able to say they turned $6 million into
$XYZ million. Given that success story, asking Congress for additional
funding becomes a much easier task, as there’s solid research
behind it to prove out the success of what was accomplished with
only $6 million.
Manny Cortez said that at this level, the campaign winds up being
approximately two months’ long. This makes it difficult
to quantify effectiveness. He also felt there must be some way
to allocate more money to public relations and measurement activities.
Mr. Rasulo said that effective measurement is key, as is the
successful development and implementation of the cooperative program.
Ms. Jane Rutter, representing Noel Irwin Hentschel, said that
it is important for the U.K. tour operators to be included in
the cooperative program.
Mr. Cortez said that Longwoods has been very effective in the
past in assessing advertising campaigns. He asked what thought
had been given to Longwoods realistically being able to measure
the effectiveness of the campaign, given the funding that is assigned
to it. Ms. Johnson replied that Longwoods feels that there is
sufficient funding to get solid results within the budget as outlined.
Mr. Stamatakis said that what was presented to the Board was
very well done, and showed a very comprehensive approach. He felt
that with a degree of consistency, the effort will see positive
outcomes. As it was outlined at this meeting, Mr. Stamatakis wanted
to know how much money will be allocated to the cooperative campaign,
and if additional information is available for the strategy of
the cooperative program.
Ms. Johnson said that that the number of dollars that would be
committed to the cooperative program has not yet been finally
decided. The Alliance felt it was very important to meet with
the Board and other key travel industry partners before finalizing
the coop plan. She further stated that when they met with TIA,
their representatives said that they already have a strong print
program in place. The Alliance does not want to duplicate anyone’s
efforts, so additional exploration of current industry programming
is also prudent. She said the Alliance wants to make sure that
this is a very well-thought out program, and they understand that
partnering with the tour operators is a critical element to be
Rita Cuddihy, on behalf of Bill Marriott, asked how long the
television campaign would run. Ms. Bristow said that the current
planning would span approximately seven weeks. The reach would
be 76% of the ABC1 target audience, with a 6.1 opportunity to
see (OTS) rating. 80% of the airtime would occur in the peak viewing
period, which would also provide C1C2 target audience reach. The
anticipated ABC1 rating points is 450. It is possible that plans
could change to increase the amount of TV purchased, but this
is the plan at this time.
Ms. Cuddihy expressed concern about the cooperative program going
after travel industry members who are already participating in
other programs offered by other organizations, such as TIA. Ms.
Johnson assured the meeting attendees that the Alliance would
be doing everything in its power to blend programs and messages
so that no one is being “double dipped.”
Ms. Marano said that the intent is to make this a unified program,
representative of the whole nation. She said the U.S. government
and the contracting team is aware of the need not to “cross
wires” on this program. For this reason, she feels it is
a good thing that the cooperative program is not yet fully fleshed-out
because it is providing an opportunity for the USG and the Alliance
to work with the various potential partners to ensure that what
is developed will dovetail with what is already in place in the
Ms. Cuddihy also expressed concern about there being multiple
web addresses in the marketplace simultaneously, and voiced her
support for using TIA’s website. Mr. Baker reiterated that
the Alliance continues to talk to and work with TIA on this issue.
She further said that the USG must give money to TIA for their
website to make sure that the website reflected the campaign.
Mr. Rasulo said that the campaign as presented does not translate
well into print, that photo stills from movies don’t sell,
and that while film has great emotional strength, print does not
sell. He feels celebrity endorsements will work better. He feels
the campaign needs to use the people from the movies, not the
He additionally said that TIA’s print campaign concept
was better than what was presented at this meeting.
He said that movies are not a great message to get the theme
of the “heart and soul of America” across which is
critical to the success of the campaign.
The cooperative campaign has serious development work yet to
be done. Simply scrolling a list of names across the bottom of
the advertisements does not create anything workable for the partners.
The need is to create a donut in the TV advertising around which
potential co-op partners can come to the table.
He doesn’t feel his colleagues are big enough to sign on
for a generic campaign. Must be more targeted than what was presented.
Ms. Cuddihy said that it was hard for her to see how Marriott
could co-op on this campaign.
Mr. Rasulo said that the cooperative components of the campaign
may be more successful on the U.K. side. He feels strongly about
the notion of the “people and the spirit of the U.S.”
as a theme.
Mr. Sam Wright, speaking on behalf of Henry Silverman, said that
the royalty issues must be worked out prior to anything being
On behalf of Glenn Tilton, Martin White asked how the Internet
is going to be used in the campaign. Ms. Johnson said that the
Alliance must work closely with both TIA and the Visit USA Association
UK because they already have an on-line presence. She said there
is no current plan to include on-line advertising as part of the
mix, but they will use on-line marketing opportunities through
their public relations efforts. She further said that the Alliance
was so impressed with TIA’s website that they want to be
sure that the campaign drives consumers directly to their site.
She also said that Edelman will be working with the Motion Picture
Arts Association and with studio heads for agreements and arrangements
about rights and other possibilities.
Mr. White expressed concern about how United Airlines would tag
on to the campaign. He felt there was more possibility in an on-line
scenario than with either the print or TV elements as they were
Ms. Cuddihy said there was much more work to be done before this
campaign is ready to be implemented.
Matt Bates, Chairman, Visit USA Association United Kingdom
addressed the Board, thanking them for the opportunity to participate
in the meeting. He said he had been at the first meeting of
the Board in September on Ellis Island, and was excited to see
how far the program has progressed in that time.
He also expressed thanks for the fact that the Visit USA Association
U.K. has been included in the development stages of the program.
He and the members of the association feel that this campaign
will work for them and for the United Kingdom. They believe
it has the elements that touch the British holidaymakers and
He believes the mediums outlined in the presentation are just
about right for the U.K. market and for the Visit USA Association
members. The cooperative program provides a range of opportunities
for members of all sizes. He feels the flexibility demonstrated
in the campaign’s elements is very important for the marketplace.
He said the Association members want to participate, and he
feels confident that they can do that based on what was presented
at the meeting.Mr. Bates feels that fulfillment is the likely
place for the Visit USA Association itself to participate in
the program. They currently operate a number of fulfillment
programs, including a website, a 900#, and a printed Visit USA
brochure that directs consumers to tour operators who have product
for sale. He said that their entire program is brandable and
adaptable to this campaign.
The Visit USA Association is more than keen to continue to
cooperate with the USG on this program, and to make their fulfillment
mechanisms work for this campaign.
Regardless of what developments ensue on the creative, the
fulfillment will be just as relevant and just as potent.
He thanked the Chair once again for the opportunity to speak
and to present the viewpoints of the Visit USA Association U.K.
Larry Cohen, Northeast Media said he represented Phoenix Publishing
and the Daily Telegraph to U.S. suppliers interested in gaining
business from the U.K. He suggested that the Alliance should
consider participating in an on-going cooperative advertising
program his organization already has in place with the Daily
Telegraph. He said it was a logically priced pay-to-play effort
that works quite well. This program normally takes the format
of a 16-page supplement. He feels they have been successful
because of the breadth of their advertisers. They have a full
spectrum of price ranges for participation, starting at £1000.
He went on to say that it is possible to put together a cooperative
program that leverages the campaign. He stressed the need to
provide affordable buy-in rates
for organizations of all sizes, particularly those based in
Patricia McNally, National Scenic Byways program of the U.S.
Department of Transportation said that they were pleased to
be working with the Office of Travel and Tourism Industries
and other federal partners on the furthering of the depth and
breadth of tourism product available in the United States. She
said she would include the U.K. program components in an upcoming
issue of her quarterly newsletter and solicit input from the
National Scenic Byways as to films and television shows that
may have been shot using their Byways.
Betsy O’Rourke, Travel Industry Association of America,
said that TIA represents the entire travel and tourism industry,
with approximately 2500 members. They launched their U.K. campaign
in 2000. It now includes newspaper inserts, direct mail, a SeeAmerica
Pavilion at World Travel Market and See America Week in London
– all of which ties directly back to their website, www.seeamerica.org.
She said that should the USG campaign include a website, TIA
feels very strongly that it should be their website. They believe
that getting the consumer directly to purchase-able product
is critical to the success of any campaign. She also said that
a cooperative program is very important. TIA has had 129 partners
in their U.K. program to date, and she echoed Ms. Cuddihy’s
comment that it is not wise to put any program into the marketplace
that is not fully integrated with what is already being done.
She also cautioned that the timing of the campaign will be very
important. She feels that a Winter ’05 launch makes the
TIA will continue to support this campaign as it develops,
and encouraged the USG and the Alliance to leverage all of the
available assets to the best degree possible.
There being no further business, and no additional public comments,
Ms. Heizer officially closed the meeting of the Travel and Tourism
Promotion Advisory Board at 11:55 a.m.