San Diego gearing up for $23 million tourism campaign

SAN DIEGO (CNS) – San Diego tourism officials are planning a major
advertising blitz in the coming fiscal year to promote the city and environs to
prospective vacationers.

Lorin Stewart, the head of the city's Tourism Marketing District, said
the goal was to have paid advertising fetch 900 million impressions and
generate 8 million inquiries by potential travelers.

Stewart told members of the City Council's Budget Committee that the TMD
would send about $23 million to the San Diego Tourism Authority for the
marketing effort.

Tourism promotion was muted over the past year because of a dispute
between industry officials and ex-Mayor Bob Filner, who refused to turn over
city funds. The city, however, did pay for a network television commercial
during the Chargers playoff game against Denver in January.

“We're using paid media to get San Diego back on the map … in a big
way,” Stewart said. The new fiscal year begins July 1.

He said local tourism expert hope to piggyback on marketing plans by the
state and the U.S.

“It is great to see San Diego back on the airwaves after a tumultuous
2013,” Councilman Mark Kersey said.

Kersey said there was “tremendous opportunity for international
growth” in tourism. Vacationers from outside the United States will look to
New York City, Los Angeles and San Francisco, but “there's no reason why we
can't be in that conversation, as well,” he said.

The TMD generates its income by a surcharge on top of hotel room taxes.

Money goes to the tourism authority for promotional purposes and to
groups that stage events that bring tourists to San Diego.

Other groups receiving TMD money in 2015 will be the San Diego Bowl Game
Association, which stages the Poinsettia and Holiday Bowls; the San Diego
Sports Commission; the Competitor Group, which puts on the Rock 'n' Roll
Marathon; the Century Club, which organizes the Farmers Insurance Open golf
tournament; the California State Games; the San Diego Crew Classic; San Diego
Bayfair, which runs the unlimited hydroplane races on Mission Bay; the Craft
Brewers Guild for Beer Week; and the La Jolla Playhouse.

The TMD's work plan and budget got the green light from the committee
and is pending final approval from to the full City Council.

Categories: KUSI