NOTMC amps up their “Follow Your NOLA” campaign

The New Orleans Tourism Marketing Corporation (NOTMC) will continue with the theme, “Follow Your NOLA” advertising campaign for a third year in a row – but in 2015 the campaign will leave a year-round impression on a wider audience.   

The NOTMC board met Monday, Sept. 22, where they heard about the plans to move towards the year-round campaign, which is expected to start within the coming months. New Orleans fall and winter holiday seasons will be advertised in Austin, Boston, Chicago, Los Angeles, San Francisco and Washington.  Plus a watered down version of the campaign will be rolled out to select cities within driving distance.

The campaign, which highlights the city’s classic destination; the French Quarter, also encourages visitors to unearth their own New Orleans experience in surrounding neighborhoods – a campaign that targets “experiential discoverers”, which according to Jeff Hinson of 360i advertising firm, are people who dive deep into exploring their destination.

The board heard that an estimated $1.2 million will go toward television commercials; a 30-second spot from “Follow Your NOLA”, and a 15-second spot from “Follow Your Joy”, a holiday play on the main theme. 

NOTMC was originally formed to boost hotel occupancy during the slower summer months and holiday seasons; but post Hurricane Katrina, NOTMC increased its efforts in promoting the leisure tourism industry year-round.   

Earlier this year in April, NOTMC announced that New Orleans had attracted 9.28 million visitors in 2013, who brought in a record breaking $6.47 billion.

The projected cost of expanding the campaign to a year-round effort in 2015 is estimated to be $10.3 million, which includes public relations work, internet marketing, support for festivals, etc. The funding for this will come from a new revenue stream which originated from an assessment that hotels agreed to impose this year – an additional fee on their guests to support tourism promotion through NOTMC and the New Orleans Convention and Visitors Bureau.

These additional efforts also hope to increase mid-week visitation, a goal which draws some skepticism, but at the very least New Orleans should see a rise in extended stays over weekends.


Categories: Tourism Biz