Data driven strategy has dialed in success
Grand Junction, Colorado (May 25, 2021) – Visit Grand Junction (Visit GJ), the City of Grand Junction’s Destination Marketing Organization (DMO), is making national news and pacing ahead of the U.S. in lodging occupancy. A recent Wall Street Journal article titled “A Perfect Summer Road Trip” featured the Colorado National Monument as the lead image and highlighted the Hotel Maverick. The article ran in both print and online yielding $25,500 in online earned media value coupled with 994,600 in audience reach. The Grand Junction area has also been prominently featured in recent travel articles in key national and regional publications including Conde Nast Traveler, Texas Monthly, and Phoenix Magazine. With regard to lodging occupancy, Grand Junction is now surpassing 2019, the pre-pandemic year. Grand Junction’s April 2021 occupancy is 17.8% above April 2019’s occupancy and is also 23.3% above the U.S. occupancy. The most recent data for May 2021 shows Grand Junction’s occupancy is 29.9% above the U.S.
“The data-based marketing we have implemented in our department is providing us the insights to make decisions based on data and science as opposed to anecdotal information or loose assumptions,” said Visit Grand Junction Director Elizabeth Fogarty. “We can now study what is happening with our campaigns in realtime and we make adjustments accordingly.” When marketing is treated as a science, it provides the opportunity to objectively extract and translate meaningful data, while also directly and verifiably confirming the net economic impact to the community from the advertising. “We now analyze what happened, why did it happen, what will happen, and how can we make it happen – which is the ultimate goal in data modeling. Although this is a very difficult process and requires expertise in data science, the time and effort in learning this technique is worthwhile, and the results speak for themselves,” said Fogarty.
During the pandemic, the entire country experienced how businesses suffered without visitors patronizing local lodging, dining, and shopping establishments. Tammy Anderson, Board Chair for the Visit Grand Junction Advisory Board, shared, “despite the challenges of the pandemic, Elizabeth and her team have managed to use their innovative marketing proficiency to overcome our deficits sooner than many areas of the country, which is especially impressive given Grand Junction is such a young destination brand. It is amazing to see Grand Junction making headlines and producing these results so quickly, as there are many other rural areas in the country with strong brands. It is also exciting to witness tourism taking a lead role in diversifying the Grand Junction economy – we all benefit from that by attracting new restaurants, retail shops, and things to do for everyone to enjoy.”
About Visit Grand Junction (VisitGrandJunction.com) – Visit Grand Junction, Grand Junction’s local Destination Marketing Organization, is a Department of the City of Grand Junction. Funded by a lodging tax paid by out-of-town guests, Visit Grand Junction executes marketing targeted toward potential visitors outside the area to promote travel and tourism to Grand Junction, thereby providing for a sustainable and consistent economy and enhanced quality of life for residents. Visitor spending accounts for one-third of the city’s sales tax revenue, which provides funding for public safety, infrastructure, and other city services.
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