Friday, October 25, 2013

Worldwide campaign promotes U.S.; states like Louisiana reporting record tourism dollars

Buses driving around London advertise vacations to the Louisiana bayou, while shoppers in stores can see videos of what it's like on the beaches of South Carolina. It's all part of a U.S. tourism campaign by a company called Brand USA, "a nonprofit, public-private partnership created by legislation President Barack Obama signed in 2010" to promote all 50 states to world travelers, Pamela Prah reports for Stateline. "The program is funded by the private sector, mostly the tourism-related industry, with matching federal funds of up to $100 million a year from a $10 fee that international travelers pay when they visit the U.S. Last year, the first full year of operation, Brand USA received $60 million in private-sector funding. That more than doubled to $130 million this year." (Brand USA photo)

One of the first states to work with Brand USA was Louisiana, which reports shatter tourism records, with 26.3 million visitors in 2012 resulting in $10.7 billion, and $665 million in state tax revenue generated through domestic and international visitors. That represents a more than 26-to-1 return on investment of state funding, Lt. Gov. Jay Dardenne said in a news release. The state has created promotional videos in German, French and Spanish for the company's website, Prah reports.

The website Discover America has links to each state, promoting tourist attractions, state facts, outdoor adventures, the state's history, and fun suggestions for travelers, such as ordering grits and saying y'all in Alabama, where to get the best desserts in Nebraska, and to order a Moxie soda in Maine.

No comments: