Program Designed to Welcome New Residents Wins Praise
The Michigan Economic Development Corporation announced today that Travel Michigan, the state’s official tourism promotion agency, has won a bronze Adrian Advertising Award in the 1999 Hospitality Sales & Marketing Association International Travel Competition. Travel Michigan was recognized for last year’s direct mail campaign targeted at people who recently moved to the state.
Each new resident received a mailing stressing the beauty and excitement of their new home state’s tourism product. In addition, they were able to submit the names of two friends or relatives, each of whom received a personalized letter from Governor John Engler asking them to visit their friend in Michigan.
“Travel Michigan’s marketing has been exceptional for the last several years,” said Doug Rothwell, president and CEO of the Michigan Economic Development Corporation. Travel Michigan is part of the MEDC. “This was a creative campaign that educated new Michiganders on what the rest of us already know—that not only is Michigan a great place to live and work, it is also a great place to vacation.”
The campaign targeted people over 25 years of age who moved from a non-Michigan zip code to a Michigan zip code during the months of January through March 1999. It was designed to increase tourism leads to the Travel Michigan web site (address below) from both in and out-of-state residents. Response rate for the campaign was 18 percent—well above the industry standard of two percent for a successful direct-mail campaign.
“As a state, we’re far more likely than most to ‘stay home’ when we take our vacations, and we wanted these new residents to know that as well,” said Susy Avery, vice president of Travel Michigan. “And for those friends to get a letter from the Governor identifying them and their friend by name, well that’s a pretty unique change of address form.”
The HSMAI Adrian Advertising Awards Competition has grown to become the largest and most prestigious travel event of its kind in the world. Last year, the contest and its PR counterpart attracted over 1,800 entries from 51 countries around the world. Brogan & Partners, a Detroit-based marketing firm, designed the campaign for Travel Michigan.
Tourism is the state’s second largest industry, generating more than $10 billion for the state’s economy each year.
Travelers needing assistance in planning a Michigan getaway or vacation may visit Travel Michigan’s web site at the address below, or call the toll-free number at (888) 78-GREAT (784-7328), to talk to a travel advisor, Monday through Friday 7:30 a.m. to 11:00 p.m. (EDT), and Saturday and Sunday 7:30 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.