sales& MARKETING 2014 Plan

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2 Our Mission EXPLORE GWINNETT Gwinnett Convention and Visitors Bureau (D.B.A. ), is Gwinnett County s official tourism organization and is dedicated to strengthening Gwinnett County s economy by marketing the county as a destination for conventions, sporting events, meetings and leisure travel through sales, marketing and promotion. also houses the Gwinnett Sports Commission and the GCVB Board of Directors oversees the management and marketing of Gwinnett Center. Gwinnett SPORTS COMMISSION The mission of the Gwinnett Sports Commission (GSC) is to foster economic development through coordinating and developing Gwinnett s role as a leading site for sports events involving youth, collegiate, amateur and professional organizations. ExploreGwinnett.org GwinnettSportsCommission.com 1

3 A letter from s Executive Director Lisa Anders Executive Director 2013 was an outstanding year for Gwinnett s busy and evolving hospitality industry. The hospitality industry is beginning to see new growth and development, and our new marketing brand is becoming entrenched with our partners. We have also begun to expand our reaches into previously untapped territory, including both the international and Georgia s thriving entertainment industry. No matter what the initiative, the hospitality industry continues to be an important engine for both the state of Georgia and for Gwinnett County. Tourism is Georgia s fifth largest industry, and Gwinnett s tourism economic impact figures confirm that importance. Our most recent economic impact figures reflect: $1.037 billion in direct tourist spending, supporting 10,990 jobs, and creating $38.75 million in state tax revenue, as well as $29.29 million in local tax revenue. That impact resonates at home as well with each Gwinnett County household receiving $ in tax relief annually as a result of the taxes generated by tourism promises the groundbreaking for the long-awaited Gwinnett Center headquarters hotel, which will be the next step in completing the Gwinnett Center master plan. With groundbreaking scheduled for Fall 2014, this development will take Gwinnett to a new level, and help bring us to a level playing field with our local/regional competitors for consolidated convention and accommodations offerings, as well as creating an important synergy with Gwinnett Center. In 2014, we ll continue to focus on putting heads in beds, but we ll also explore new tourism avenues, including international marketing, with a focus on the inbound Chinese market. Gwinnett is also reaping the benefits of the statewide tax incentive for the movie industry, and our designation as Gwinnett Camera Ready film office will continue to keep us busy. With the new Atlanta Media Studio complex now open, Gwinnett is becoming fully immersed in the movie market. The sales and marketing staff will work throughout 2014 to continue to develop the power of partnerships as we market Gwinnett as a destination. These partnerships are truly become the lifeblood of our mission. There are co-operative sales efforts with Gwinnett Center, our hotels and event facilities as well as grant programs to support new meetings or expanding festivals or events. Our city partnerships are increasingly important, as we join our cities to expand, promote and support their downtown marketing efforts. Other partnerships include Gwinnett s Parks & Recreation whether as venues for events ranging from television or movie shoots to regional baseball tournaments. Our partnerships with our local colleges have allowed us to grow the Gwinnett Tourism Awareness Program, as well as our thriving volunteer ambassador program. Whether you re a local or visitor, there are so many ways to become an active, engaged partner with. We ll work to help you bring your meeting to Gwinnett, learn more about our thriving, beautiful county by becoming a volunteer or just utilizing our website and social media to see what is happening in Gwinnett. Come explore Gwinnett with us! Sincerely Lisa Anders Lisa Anders, Executive Director ExploreGwinnett.org GwinnettSportsCommission.com 2

4 A letter from Gwinnett Sports Commission s Executive Director During the week of April 14-20, we will embark on our 2nd annual PGA TOUR Champion s Tour event known as the Greater Gwinnett Championship, presented by Mitsubishi Electric Cooling and Heating. TPC Sugarloaf will once again become the backdrop to some of the most talented golfers in the world. Our defending Champion, and Hall of Famer, Bernhard Langer will return to defend his crown hoping to steal away the title. We look forward to another year of great crowds who will come out to enjoy the tournament, the beautiful spring temperatures, and a full week of activities planned around the event. This great event is the centerpiece of our sports marketing plan. According to an economic impact study done at the end of the 2013 event, this tournament added an estimated ten million dollar spike to the overall local and surrounding economies. We expect even bigger numbers in year Southeastern Conference basketball returned this year to The Arena at Gwinnett Center with the SEC Women s Basketball Tournament. The conference s greatest stars were on display as the Lady Vols fought to win the 2014 SEC Championship title. Add in the Professional Bull Riders, the Harlem Globetrotters, the Gwinnett Gladiators, and many other great events, and the Arena has a full slate of fast action for the sports enthusiast. While our collegiate and professional events are very exciting, we continue to build on our youth and team sports markets. This segment of our overall sports marketing strategy plays such a vital role in the economic injection it brings to our area. The past year is a prime example with almost 8000 hotel room bookings that are directly related to sporting events in the area. We were fortunate to bring in 23 new events as well as the continuation of many traditional events including soccer, lacrosse, baseball and softball, that have called Gwinnett home for several years. Our relationship with our private facilities and the great assets of the Gwinnett Parks and Recreation Division continue to make Gwinnett a sports destination that is attractive to many different sports disciplines. The AAA affiliate of the Atlanta Braves, the Gwinnett Braves are preparing for their 6th season in Gwinnett. We look forward to another great year from them competitively, as well as a great opportunity for family outings and gatherings of friends at beautiful Coolray Field. It is still one of the most affordable and best bargains in town to enjoy a night of great fun and entertainment; all right here in our back yard. Sports continue to be a steady and dependable asset, as it relates to the overall economic picture of the area, and the Gwinnett Sports Commission will continue to monitor and grow this important industry. Our goal is to constantly place Gwinnett in a position to remain as one of the premiere sports destinations in the region. Quality sports entertainment, great venues, and sports participation is a great formula in achieving these goals. In this sense, winning takes place well before the games are ever played. That has been, and remains our strategy and mission, as we move full speed into another great year of sports marketing! See you on the course and on the field! Sincerely Stan L. Hall, Executive Director Gwinnett Sports Commission Gwinnett Championship Foundation Stan L. Hall Executive Director Gwinnett Sports Commission ExploreGwinnett.org GwinnettSportsCommission.com 3

5 sales& P lan 2013 highlights increase in website traffic GTAP offered programs in conjunction with 49 community partners 4,286 Gwinnett Tourism Awareness Program Attendees, an increase of 20%. 47 Gwinnett Tourism Awareness Program educational sessions GTAP Ambassadors clocked in over 1,800 volunteer hours in the community, an increase of 80% 1800 HOURS 7000 room nights booked for the BAPS National Youth Organization (July 2013) 14% increase in family reunions booked 1-2 years in advance 11,500 GSC newsletters sent 41,000 room nights booked for non-sports 23 NEW SPORTING EVENTS ExploreGwinnett.org GwinnettSportsCommission.com 4

6 sales& 2013 highlights NEW FANS NEW FOLLOWERS 4100 Twitter link clicks BLOG VIEWS mentions FOLLOWERS 361 retweets 7386 sports room nights booked 48,000+ total room nights booked by and Gwinnett Sports Commission staff 5,321 toiletries collected from Gwinnett hospitality community for SaltLight Center, a local homeless shelter , ,000+ App Downloads Gwinnett Visitors Guides distributed through hotels, website and events ExploreGwinnett.org unique visitors ExploreGwinnett.org GwinnettSportsCommission.com 5

7 Sales Department The focus of the four-person Sales Department is to attract overnight group visitors to Gwinnett County s hotels and facilities utilizing various facilities including Gwinnett Center and the Arena as destination venues. The diversity of our destination, product, resources and partners will require different sales strategies and markets to accomplish our main objective of attracting group visitors. The information will not only showcase our hotels/ facilities, but will highlight our services, location, accessibility, activities and overall value. The sales team will pursue bookings for Gwinnett s hotels, Gwinnett Center, the Arena and various other venues. Providing essential meeting planning resources, will continue to prioritize attracting niche markets that take advantage of Gwinnett s strengths including faith-based meetings, reunions and state association meetings. The 2013 sales goal was 43,500 room nights. The sales staff attained 95% of that goal in For 2014, the sales goal is 43,500 group room nights. Our competition remains strong, with many competitors celebrating recent expansions, as well as having more space, hotel rooms in closer proximity to their Convention Center and more full-service hotels in their inventory. Reunion 8% Definite Room Nights by Market: Social, Tour & Travel 15% Corporate 8% Religious 37% Association 7% Sports 25% COMPETITIVE AND COMPARABLE DESTINATIONS CITY NAME OF CONVENTION CENTER EXHIBIT SPACE # ROOMS IN CC PROXIMITY Athens, GA The Classic Center 56,000 1,500 rooms walking distance Cobb County, GA Cobb Galleria Centre 144,000 sf 800 rooms connected College Park, GA GA International Convention Center 150,000 sf 8,000 rooms with 2 miles Chattanooga, TN Chattanooga Convention Center 100,000 sf 2,000 rooms within walking distance Birmingham, AL Birmingham Convention Center 220,000 sf 770 rooms attached ExploreGwinnett.org GwinnettSportsCommission.com 6

8 FAITH-BASED This market is Gwinnett s strongest group market, including the the strong reputation of the Arena at Gwinnett Center for major conventions. Additional strengths include the proliferation of new mega-churches in Gwinnett, and unique facilities including the John Maxwell Institute, the BAPS Hindu Temple and the Great Atlanta Christian School LongForum. Strengths Gwinnett is a great fit for budget-conscious groups Gwinnett offers a myriad of facilities to fit various group sizes These groups are typically willing to spread out hotel rooms among many hotels Strong industry recognition, named as Ministry Minded City by Convention South magazine Opportunities: NEW John Maxwell Institute complex New business development from churches not currently meeting in Gwinnett Maximizing lead referrals from satisfied current clients Strategic partnership with Collinson Media for faith-based marketing FAM trips for meeting planners Planned addition of a full-service hotel at Gwinnett Center ASSOCIATION The association market represented a small portion of s group business in 2013, and is a market that is poised for additional growth in Strengths: Strong reputation of Gwinnett Center amongst state associations Size & ability of our full-service hotels to host small-tomidsize association meetings Challenges: Gwinnett is less walkable than other similar destinations Other destinations offer hotels onsite with convention centers Opportunities: Using our local community & business leaders to Go Gwinnett by partnering to bring their meetings back to Gwinnett Gwinnett s stellar reputation for great schools, public safety, city management, etc. Planned addition of a full-service hotel at Gwinnett Center ExploreGwinnett.org GwinnettSportsCommission.com 7

9 CORPORATE The corporate market remains challenging, due to the post-recession changes of shorter trips and limited training. New corporate relocation/development has increased, and a strong relationship with Partnership Gwinnett will be a focus for Strengths: Well-known business draws, such as Technology Park, and hyped expansions such as Primerica (2013) make Gwinnett a much sought-after destination for corporations Georgia Gwinnett College and Gwinnett Tech continue to expand and bring light to Gwinnett s growing pool of educated citizens. This is also draw for corporations looking to relocate. Challenges: The corporate market has not totally rebounded from the recession Opportunities: Planned addition of a full-service hotel at Gwinnett Center Forge strong partnerships with Partnership Gwinnett and Georgia Department of Economic Development to aid in outreach to the International market REUNIONS Gwinnett remains a popular venue for Family Reunions. Gwinnett s largest draw is our top-ranked Parks and Recreation Department, which has numerous reunionfriendly parks, pavilions and buildings. Strengths Gwinnett is extremely popular with family reunion groups due to our affordable, group-friendly lodging Our parks also include features including kitchens, large gazebos and affordable rates Free reunion planning services Complimentary welcome bags for hotel guests (other CVBs typically charge) Close proximity to one of the state s most visited attractions, Stone Mountain Park Opportunities Continue to refresh content at Family Reunion Planning Workshops to gain more interest and value to the consumer Work with Marketing Department to create a family reunion promotion to create more buzz about family reunion season GOVERNMENT The government market is a small slice of the overall market share for Gwinnett, due primarily to our distance from downtown and the major governmental agencies. However other opportunities include ongoing focus on the military association market, through presentations similar to the previous effort at Fort Benning. ExploreGwinnett.org GwinnettSportsCommission.com 8

10 WEDDINGS The wedding market has growth opportunity ion 2014, with a 50% increase in bookings in Maintaining that momentum by increased partnerships and bridal show attendance is a focus for Strengths Gwinnett offers diverse facilities to accommodate weddings Close proximity to Atlanta offers brides in Metro Atlanta a good, affordable alternative to a city wedding Excellent relationship with Proof of the Pudding, Atlanta s top caterer Challenges Many event facilities require agreements or rebates for the local hotel community Opportunities: Work to educate event facilities on the benefits of working with Partner with committed event facilities to cross-market through sharing contact lists for mail-outs and calls and sharing bridal show booths Maximize marketing opportunities with publications that we currently advertise with (ie. Occasions Magazine) Increased focus on ethnic weddings by attending multicultural bridal events MOTORCOACH The Motorcoach market continues to be a strong market for Gwinnett due to the location and affordability. Strengths staff have worked through the years to build a strong relationship with motorcoach companies all over the Southeast. Affordable hotel rates for large motorcoach groups Accessible location to Atlanta allows Gwinnett to serve as an ideal destination for hub and spoke itineraries Challenges Often times after visiting Gwinnett once, motorcoach operators are more familiar and they contact hotels directly for discounted rates rather than contacting Explore Gwinnett first Opportunities: Update Group Tour Manual to include new attractions, photos, itineraries and benefits Research new ways to entice motorcoach operators to take advantage of s free services (ie. Dated booking specials like pizza parties for student groups, or entry discounts for large events) Create new, unique itineraries to share at trade shows and on the website ExploreGwinnett.org GwinnettSportsCommission.com 9

11 Sales Goals for 2014 expand Expand Go Gwinnett campaign through a strong local marketing campaign to leverage Gwinnett s leaders to help develop new business. Sales campaign driven by phone calls, s and networking) to actively solicit a specific number of leads from community colleagues Implement incentive program for all referrals Leverage existing partnerships to spread this concept to all target audiences Maximize opportunities to speak to motivated citizen groups about the campaign Use local marketing campaign to target statewide groups that can bring in hotel room nights, while also allowing us to showcase our cities (i.e. Georgia Association of City- County Managers) host Host 2-3 mini Familiarization (FAM) Tours of Gwinnett Target select faith, corporate, association and SMERF groups and design a custom tour to fit their needs maximize Maximize lead generation opportunities with tradeshows and association memberships Target specific contacts at tradeshows to entertain and build relationships with stronger utilization of technology such as ipads at tradeshows, sales calls and appointments Create specific follow-up plan for each tradeshow to include calls, mail outs and s Stronger outreach and relationship building with colleagues at association membership meetings locally Prioritize sharing Meetings Grant details to attract new events revamp Revamp wedding market and rooms block initiative to maximize local hotel and special event facility use Continue to build relationships with venues that are dedicated to a partnership with by adding them to the Wedding Planners FAM Tour in 2014 and creating a new a tour for brides to tour these venues. Continue to work with Beautiful Bride Magazine to assist with reaching target audiences Attend educational workshops to stay abreast of trends and network with other industry professionals (ie. Perfect Wedding Guide Lunch & Learns) Join a wedding industry association such as Wedding Network USA, WIPA (Wedding Industry Professionals Association) or ABC (Association of Bridal Consultants) Create and market incentives to attract brides to utilize our services. Utilize Occasions Magazine, print collateral at bridal shows and venue partners to promote the incentive ExploreGwinnett.org GwinnettSportsCommission.com 10

12 work Work to build the SMERF market through new offerings and events Work with Marketing Department exploring culinary tours or downtown treasures itineraries and events to pitch to tour companies Work to build Gwinnett as a destination for pet-focused events and shows utilizing Gwinnett Center, Gwinnett County Fair Grounds and pet-friendly hotels through research and outreach prioritize Prioritize building quality business relationships with local community partners Grow a quality network of housing bureaus seeking Gwinnett area lodging Become a reliable source for lodging with John C. Maxwell Institute planners and staff Encourage Partnership Gwinnett staff to include Explore Gwinnett services to new businesses and request introductions where applicable streamline Streamline partnership with Gwinnett Center to better serve clients in need of rooms in addition to Gwinnett Center meeting space Strongly enhance EG s and Gwinnett Center s convention service offerings Regularly attend Gwinnett Center sales team meetings to remain in the loop on new events and news Develop post-meeting survey for all groups to track event successes/challenges Provide focused collateral piece or letter that Gwinnett Center sales staff consistently includes with contracts and other vital information to clients ExploreGwinnett.org GwinnettSportsCommission.com 11

13 Gwinnett Sports Commission (GSC) Gwinnett Sports Commission was founded in 2003 and serves as Gwinnett County s official sports marketing organization. GSC continues to work closely with local sports venues such as the Arena at Gwinnett Center, Suwanee Sports Academy, Lifetime Tennis Atlanta, EPIC Tennis Center, Gwinnett County Parks and Recreation (GCPR), Gwinnett County Public Schools, Greater Atlanta Christian School and South Gwinnett Athletic Association promises to be an exciting year for GSC with the second year of the PGA TOUR Champion s Tour Greater Gwinnett Championship, new and exciting partnerships with the Atlanta Sports Council and SEC Women s Basketball, a much-anticipated 6th season for the Gwinnett Braves at Coolray Field and numerous amateur sporting events visiting Gwinnett. The Greater Gwinnett Championship is sure to exceed last year s boost in economic impact with even more hotel room night generation, local and national media impressions and positive affect on local businesses. Strengths for the sports market: A desirable destination for a diverse range of youth sports with strong facilities and local support/ participation An Arena that has the experience and capability to host SEC, NCAA and other regional/national events Nationally recognized Parks and Recreation department A wide array of affordable accommodation options for teams/ families A diverse selection of privately owned facilities Strong relationships with major sports housing bureaus Challenges for the sports market: Availability of parks and recreation facilities Price sensitivity Large promoter/planner fees or guarantees for events Lack of developed local sponsorships for these events ExploreGwinnett.org GwinnettSportsCommission.com 12

14 Gwinnett Sports Commission Goals for 2014 book Book 8,646 group room nights (a 20% increase over 2013 room night bookings) Work with existing events to expand them, or develop new regional/national events Contact local venues to develop relationships with existing events that have been brought in without GSC assistance Build relationships and contacts through increased focus on sports association organizations (i.e. Georgia Sports, Atlanta Sports Council, NASC Sports Event Symposium) Identify slow seasons for Gwinnett County and seek out events to fill dates Continue to target alternative sports such as roller derby, kickball, flag football, rugby, extreme sports, Crossfit, etc Develop regular meetings with sports-friendly hotels to target specific events Develop stronger relationships with athletic directors at Gwinnett County high schools promote Utilize and promote local marketing campaign to leverage Gwinnett s superior reputation with schools, facilities and local sports engagement. Utilize personal calls, membership lists, marketing campaign, local signage and speaking engagements. Georgia Athletics Officials Association Georgia Parks and Recreation annual meeting Georgia Gwinnett College sports-affiliated meetings Run the Reagan Road Race Capitalize on offering grant program to quality sports groups: Gwinnett Touchdown Club Gwinnett Football League Gwinnett Sports Hall of Fame build Continue to research and develop relationships and sponsorships to build the Greater Gwinnett Championship Nurturing and creating relationships with various local companies for potential sponsorships for PGA tournament as well as other future events Developing and enhancing existing volunteer staff for potential tournament Work closely with the PGA Tour, PGA TOUR Champions Tour staff, and TPC at Sugarloaf staff Develop strategic marketing plan to ensure success of the tournament ExploreGwinnett.org GwinnettSportsCommission.com 13

15 raise Continue raising awareness of who, what, and why the GSC is important to Gwinnett s hospitality community and overall economy Developing a regular speaking schedule to tout the Sports Commission s mission and projects (i.e. Rotary, Kiwanis, etc) Government cable channel Sports Commission quarterly show Sports Commission displays at the Arena, Convention Center and Chamber lobbies Presentation at Chamber general membership meeting Host Sports Commission sponsored chamber-style luncheon with well-known sports related guest speaker Gwinnett Municipal Association Atlanta Sports Council- closer relationships through their Board of Directors market Increase specific GSC marketing efforts with the Gwinnett professional sports teams, through mutual sponsorships Update and optimize Send out monthly sports e-newsletter with a focus on a local sports figure Increase sports e-newsletter to 3,000 subscribers Create strategic plan in conjunction with overall strategic plan Partner with local sports businesses to offer discounts to teams playing in Gwinnett Continue to inform the community of events through the use of social media ExploreGwinnett.org GwinnettSportsCommission.com 14

16 Marketing. Public Relations. Social Media. The Marketing Communications department includes marketing, advertising, public/media relations, website, social media, online/print publications and community relations. The Gwinnett Tourism Awareness Program (GTAP) is also under the umbrella of the Marketing Department. In 2014, the Marketing Communications department, in conjunction with the entire staff, will lead several important projects/programs that will have long-term impact for the, including: Promote the Go Gwinnett and National Tourism Week marketing campaigns, in conjunction with Sales and Sports Commission staff Promote Mobile App for smartphones and tablets Continue to work and enhance our relationships with our city partners Highlight non-traditional assets of Gwinnett County to boost destination appeal through promotions and hotel packages (ie. Dining, Netherworld, Gwinnett Restaurant Week, etc.) Increase local awareness with attendance at popular local festivals and events Maximize PR efforts by partnering with bloggers specializing in travel, events and food Work toward earning state and international accreditation for Explore Gwinnett from Georgia Association of Convention and Visitors Bureaus (GACVB) Continue to build positive city relationships and serving as their primary tourism information source Promote the Grant Program to bring in more new events and expand current events Grow online presence and social media networks through implementation, education and new technology Continue to raise the bar and consistently improve upon publications for Continue efforts to find ways to partner with Gwinnett Center to expand s reach Create a new user-friendly Visitors Guide that aids in sharing the story of Gwinnett Utilize new technology for an accessible digital visitor s kiosk that allows visitors to access hotel, restaurant and shopping info at Gwinnett Center Continue to work with local partners to promote Gwinnett Restaurant Week and possibly add sponsorship opportunities ExploreGwinnett.org GwinnettSportsCommission.com 15

17 2013 Publicity and Advertising Public relations and advertising continue to be a focus for s Marketing Communications team. In 2013, and Gwinnett Sports Commission were featured in numerous print, online and broadcast media outlets. Media mentions offer and Gwinnett Sports Commission free publicity and public awareness. LOCAL, POSITIVE COMMUNITY NEWS Lilburn Living Gwinnett Daily Post gwinnettdailypost.com LOCAL, POSITIVE COMMUNITY NEWS Norcross News Gwinnett Daily Post gwinnettdailypost.com LOCAL, POSITIVE COMMUNITY NEWS Tucker Times Gwinnett Daily Post gwinnettdailypost.com ExploreGwinnett.org GwinnettSportsCommission.com 16

18 Marketing Goals for 2014 refresh Refresh the look for ExploreGwinnett.org. We will continue development of ExploreGwinnett.org, as well as our micro-sites for maximum Search Engine Optimization (SEO) and for the best user experience possible. Continue to develop new, seasonal content and pictures for ExploreGwinnett.org to improve SEO Review competitor websites for new ideas/trends and initiatives Continue to improve micro-sites for conventions by adding booking codes, discounts, etc to increase direct room revenue from these sites Increase annual exploregwinnett.org website pageview to 600,000 through social media links, e-newsletter links and through sharing our info with partner websites improve Improve communications to various audiences via content-rich monthly e-newsletters and bi-monthly Dining e-newsletters. Increase general e-newsletter subscribers to 4,500 and dining e-newsletter subscribers to 3,500 via local event sign-ups, social media solicitations, valuable content and encouraging subscribers to share integrate Further integrate social media campaign into new ExploreGwinnett.org website in order to increase social media followers and engagement. Increase Explore Gwinnett mobile app downloads Obtain 1,500 additional app downloads through website mentions on ExploreGwinnett.org, e-newsletter and social media Increase Facebook fans to 8,500, Twitter followers to 4,000, and Pinterest to 1,000 ExploreGwinnett.org GwinnettSportsCommission.com 17

19 enhance Continue to enhance our efforts to serve as a primary marketing resource for our city and attraction partners Meet regularly with city partners to discuss and integrate cross-marketing or promotion ideas Provide GMA report on regular basis to city partners Increase grant opportunities for events/programs that can enhance tourism and destination appeal Create and provide media support for city events, including media lists, press release assistance, social media marketing, e-newsletter mentions, etc. partner implement Implement strategic, short and long-range campaigns for both marketing and for long-range strategic planning Create new Visitors Guide magazine that tells the story of Gwinnett and increases destination appeal Continue to develop GO Gwinnett campaign for lasting effect and work to grow positive sentiment about bringing business home to Gwinnett Complete work to receive Destination Marketing Organization accreditation from GACVB Continue to work to create strategic plans for Explore Gwinnett and the new headquarters hotel Send out monthly surveys via Survey Monkey to gauge visitors happiness with Visitors Guide, experience in Gwinnett and suggestions Increase public relations efforts by partnering with bloggers, regionally recognized local events and Georgia Department of Economic Development (GDEcD) for giveaways, hotel packages and reviews Develop a strong list of interested bloggers to build relationships with Reach out to regional travel writers to gauge interest in Gwinnett as a focus for targeted coverage Continue to seek opportunities to build awareness of through local media Use National Tourism Week as an opportunity gain public relations coverage for and the local hospitality community ExploreGwinnett.org GwinnettSportsCommission.com 18

20 Gwinnett Tourism Awareness Program (GTAP) GTAP is s nationally recognized tourism awareness and hospitality education program. The mission of GTAP is to educate the hospitality community including staffers, hotels, restaurants, attractions, hospitality students, volunteer Ambassadors and more on the impact and importance of tourism, to provide them knowledge and education that will enhance a visitor s experience, and to make them a knowledgeable source of information about our destination. GTAP is an integral and important part of s services and mission. In 2013, there were 47 programs with 4,286 attendees. GTAP offers a six-part tourism certification program that includes a countywide familiarization trip and programs covering: Shopping, Arts and Attractions; Sports, and Special Event Facilities; Behind-the-scenes tour of Gwinnett Center s Arena, Convention Center and Performing Arts Center; Gwinnett s Historic Downtowns; and History, Government, Parks and Recreation. Additional enrichment seminars are offered throughout the year. Examples include: Business Etiquette Change Happens City of Norcross Tour Community Improvement District (CID) Update meetings for hotels in each of the 4 CID districts Cultural Diversity Courting International Business Customer Service for the 21st Century Director of Sales Training Leads Program General Managers Roundtable held quarterly Getting to Know (staff) Grow Yourself Successful Holla at Ya Ancestors, genealogy program Hudgens Behind the Scenes Tour Latin Fest Leadership Leave Your Business Card at Home Meet the Media MS Computer Training Public Speaking Simon Says Sell Social Media Spanish for the Hospitality Industry Stellar Sales Tour Gwinnett Environmental and Heritage Center and Treetop Quest We re Attracted to You Services for Attractions ExploreGwinnett.org GwinnettSportsCommission.com 19

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