Orlando tourism officials will spend $68
million during the next two years trying to convince families that
there's no better place for them to vacation than in the central
Florida city and its environs.
The money that
will be spent in 2007 and 2008 represents a 240% increase compared
with the 2005-2006 budget of $20 million.
Orlando/Orange County Convention and Visitors Bureau said the $48
million in additional funding will come primarily from the 1 cent
hike in the hotel tax that went into effect on Sept. 1.
carries the slogan, "Built for families. Made for memories." It
will target women ages 25 to 54, considered the main vacation
planners for their families, the CVB said.
officials acknowledged that the destination has seen its
once-commanding share of the family market erode as other
destinations, as well as the cruise industry, have stepped up their
marketing efforts and outspent Orlando to attract
The result has
been a slump in arrivals, with September and October showing a
double-digit drop in hotel occupancy, according to Smith Travel,
which tracks hotel trends.
After two record
hurricane seasons, Florida is bracing for its first year-over-year
decline in visitors since the 2001 terrorist attacks.
The Orlando CVB
said research that it commissioned from Harris Interactive revealed
that the Florida destination "needed to be more aggressive with its
marketing approach" if it was going to reverse the decline in
visitors and lure families away from competing
Among the Harris
Interactive findings was that 32 million U.S. families had not
visited Orlando during the last five years, the CVB
was that only 27% of respondents outside of Florida were "very
familiar" with Orlando.
campaign will include two 30-second national TV spots that are
scheduled to run from late January through May and from September
commercials are currently in production, the CVB offered a sneak
peak at one of the ads, which showed parents transforming into
child-like versions of themselves at theme parks.
The CVB said the
message will be that parents can act like kids and take a break
from their hectic daily lives while bonding with their children
during a vacation in Orlando.
commercials will appear during programs that appeal to the
destination's target market, including the "The Today Show" and
"Good Morning America" in the morning and "American Idol," "Grey's
Anatomy," "Desperate Housewives" and "Dancing With the Stars"
during prime time.
The ads will also
run on cable channels such as Nickelodeon, ABC Family, the Food
Network, the Travel Channel, HGTV and Style.
The campaign also
marks the first time that Orlando will target African-American and
media, TV ads will appear on Telemundo and Univision for the
Spanish-speaking market and on BET and TV One for the
component will include ads in 15 publications that are popular with
the target audience, including Better Homes & Gardens, Child,
Oprah and Travel+Leisure as well as Spanish-language magazines
People en Espanol and Vanidades.
The campaign also
includes a "significant print, online and direct mail" component
aimed at the meetings and conventions market, the CVB
CVB will allocate $2.55 million in 2007, a 220% increase compared
with 2006, to promote Orlando to the meetings and conventions
market, where Orlando is currently second behind Las Vegas, the CVB
The campaign will
also include a new Orlando logo as well as a redesigned Orlando CVB
Web site, at www.orlandoinfo.com, expected to launch early next
To contact reporter Jorge Sidron, send e-mail to [email protected].