Destination Assessment & Mystery Shopping

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1 Polk County Tourism and Sports Marketing: Central Florida Visitors & Convention Bureau November 2012

2 Methodology 1. Destination Assessment & Mystery Shopping 2. Lodging Survey 36 properties: 3,436 of 6,680 hotel rooms (51.4%) 18 rental companies (36.7%) 3. Visitor Intercept Interviews : leisure, sports, business, meeting 4. Attraction Manager Survey (20)

3 Destination Assessment Gateways, signage, wayfinding Access, transportation & Highways 14 Cities & Towns Visitor Centers & Chambers Lodging Restaurants Shopping Attractions Arts Sports Facilities Meetings Facilities Venues (groups weddings, reunions, etc.) Outdoor Recreation

4 Destination Assessment & Mystery Shopping Overview Overall Appearance: Clean & Fresh Recent Growth is Evident Lodging: Stats on par w/florida Aging Hotels/Motels Require Focus Appeal to Florida (Near Orlando yet still true Florida) LEGOLAND Mixing Authentic with the New Sense of Place (Gateways) Needed

5 Hotel Geographic Distribution % of Total of Lodging (91 properties) 1= Lakeland Mulberry, Bartow, 49.9% (3,502 rooms, 2 = Davenport, Lake Wales, Clermont, Dundee, Frostproof, Haines City, Babson Park 42 properties) 34.7% (2,435 rooms, 31 properties) 3 = Winter Haven, Auburndale 15.4% (1,077 rooms, 18 properties)

6 Ages of Hotels Ages of Lodging Age % of Hotel/Motel Inventory Number of Rooms Built prior to or older 11% years 32.96% 2,312 old years 23.25% 1,631 old years 32.56% 2,284 old Distribution of Older Lodging Inventory 34+ years old = 3,099 rooms 1= Lakeland Mulberry, Bartow, 16.14% (1,131rooms) 2= Davenport, Lake Wales, Clermont, 16.33% Dundee/Frostproof/Haines/Babson Park (1,146 rooms) 11.72% 3= Winter Haven, Auburndale (822 rooms) years = 695 rooms 7.37% (517 rooms) 2.54% (178 rooms) ~ The majority (45%) of new/modern hotels (built since 2000) is in Lakeland

7 Combined Overall Hotel/Motel 2011 Lodging Report Rental Company 46.19% 51.44% 36.74% Response Rate 24.26% 28.72% 3.44% Individual Corporate/Business 14.12% 16.42% 3.62% Individual white-collar business travelers 10.14% 12.30% 0.24% Individual blue-collar workers/construction/etc % 18.21% 1.80% Convention/Meeting 7.81% 9.52% 0.00% SMERF 4.23% 4.91% 1.10% Corporate 1.94% 2.21% 0.70% Association 1.29% 1.57% 0.00% Government 37.87% 29.03% 78.38% Leisure 26.16% 16.07% 72.43% Tourists (visiting Central Florida for the good weather, attractions, events, etc.) 5.58% 6.39% 1.86% Visiting local friends & relatives 4.88% 5.05% 4.09% Visiting primarily for outdoor recreation (golf, fishing, boating, water sports, minor league baseball, etc.) 1.25% 1.52% 0.00% Overnighting to attend arts/cultural performances (plays, concerts, etc.) 18.42% 19.05% 15.53% Group 11.55% 11.73% 10.74% Team sports & tournaments 4.85% 4.86% 4.79% Weddings/reunions/family events/social events 2.02% 2.46% 0.00% Group Tour/motorcoach 4.17% 4.99% 0.42% Transient/Other 3.77% 4.50% 0.42% Transient: Passing through as part of a longer trip

8 Attraction Manager Survey ATTRACTION SURVEY 2011 Individual Visitors (regular daily admissions) Local/regional (within 50 mile radius) residents (both full time and seasonal 32% residents) Tourists visiting Florida staying in Polk County 13% Tourists visiting Florida staying in Orlando or somewhere OTHER than 10% Polk County Groups: Group tour/motorcoach 3% Educational/school groups 9% Weddings/reunions/family events 3% Social clubs/church groups 3% Corporate events & meetings 5% Other (specify) 22% 100%

9 Intercept Survey Research Visitor Findings and Responses

10 Demographics Average Age years-old Female 50.75% Male 49.25% College Degree 50.00% Graduate Degree 16.33% Generational Age B ESA L M/C OA Millennium Generation % 6.78% 4.30% 0.00% 4.02% Generation X % 35.59% 43.01% 13.04% 37.69% Baby Boomer % 47.46% 41.94% 69.57% 48.24% Silent Generation % 10.17% 10.75% 17.39% 10.05% War Generation % 0.00% 0.00% 0.00% 0.00%

11 Point of Origin State Percentage Florida 50.74% Michigan 5.91% New York 4.93% Illinois 3.94% Georgia 2.46% International: Canada, Australia, U.K %

12 Number of Prior Visits Number of prior visits Business ESA Leisure M/C Overall Once previously 5.00% 8.51% 20.29% 5.56% 12.99% 1-5 times 35.00% 38.30% 42.03% 44.44% 40.26% 6-10 times 20.00% 14.89% 10.14% 11.11% 12.99% 10+ times 40.00% 38.30% 27.54% 38.89% 33.77%

13 Likes/Dislikes Responses Likes Pleasant weather Friendly people Scenery and landscape Convenience and access to major regional attractions Relaxing and quiet Dislikes Traffic issues Signage/wayfinding issues Accommodations issues (need for updates) Activities 90% = dining 50% = shopping 24% = sporting event 22% = swimming 14% = visit Orlando 9% = visit attraction 5% = golf

14 Expenditures in Central Florida Category Business ESA Leisure M/C Overall Lodging $99.67 $ $ $ $ Foods/meals $58.70 $54.67 $56.27 $57.78 $56.28 Attractions/ent ertainment $23.20 $37.14 $63.05 NR $52.89 Shopping $55.45 $78.38 $58.54 $90.71 $66.71 Transportation $ $44.23 $ $21.25 $ Average Daily Expense $ $ $ $ $ Average Length of Stay Total Trip Expenditures $1, $1, $2, $ $1,781.79

15 1. It s good to be you Recommendations - Location (Central Florida, Interstate) - Weather - Growth since Tout your accomplishments - Excellent track record 3. Leadership Continue to diversify the product

16 Recommendations 4. Monitor lodging inventory (age issues) 5. Authentic heritage vs. new and improved amenities 6. Create a sense of place for Polk County 7. Gateways & signage

17 Recommendations 8. Word-smithing for attractions in visitor guide, website & promotions (it takes a lot to compete with Disney!) 9. Refine your website presence, continually making it more user-friendly for sports tourism contacts & all visitors

18 Recommendations 10. Leisure & sports are critical 11. Need growth in weekday business, Convention & Meeting needs to be a strategic focus 12. Sundays, Mondays and August, September are least occupied periods; what promotions can help improve these metrics?

19 Recommendations 13. Rentals - continue focus on international tourists: U.K., Canada, S. America 14. RevPARs are increasing, albeit slowly; trying to get back to 2007 levels

20 Recommendations from Intercept Findings 15. Florida is over half of your visitors; market to them in addition to the Triangle 16. Business travelers are coming for business and staying for leisure. Work Hard, Play Hard. 17. Adult parties are 2/3 rd of your visitors; VCFCVB needs to continually market itself both as a great destination for adults as well as families.

21 Recommendations from Intercept Findings 18. CFVCB priority is website and Internet presence, social media, and mobile

22 Recommendations for Attractions Attractions partner w/cfvcb - focus on best marketing messages & outreach efforts Ensure operating hours at times when visitors are likely to be able to visit the attraction (days/nights/weekends) Visitor guide should clearly state operating hours Offer appealing experiences that will motivate visitation Aggressively place brochures / promotional materials in hotels and places where visitors are Partner w/hotel front-line - ensure they are aware of the attraction and enthusiastically recommend it

23 Recommendations for Arts It s all about the Calendar of Events & timely communication to front line Have good tickets available for last minute Be open when travelers can visit Sell performances, not venues

24 Continued Research Annual: Lodging Study Inquiry Conversion Tracking Attraction Survey Visitor Center Tracking Events Tracking Sports Facilities Analysis Every 2 Years: Intercept Interviews Meeting/Convention Planner Survey Regional Resident Survey (Arts, Sports, Festivals/Events)

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