After 11 years out of the market, we knew it was important to recenter the State of Washington Tourism brand on the shared values of Washingtonians and travelers visiting the state. We engaged hundreds of industry and consumer stakeholders through one-on-one interviews, focus groups and town halls to uncover the essence of the Washington experience.
We centered on “inspiring humans” – a perspective that places culture and nature at the heart of all our experiences. One that recognizes that we are beholden to a greater good beyond our own time.
This manifested as a purpose-driven, documentary-style campaign to reinforce our shared values, proactively drawing like-minded people to the state.
Our in-depth analysis focused on developing a persona for those individuals who were most likely to connect with the brand values and drive ROI – a group we identified as “The Pathfinder.” These individuals seek continual, positive character growth over the course of their life. They’re curious, inventive, inclusive and engaged. They’re often the ones trying new things. And, importantly, they recognize the value of deep connections to people and nature.
After the campaign launched, “travel bookings” and “intent to travel” to Washington leaped from second to last in the western region to first among active travelers. And, even more importantly, we achieved a $69 return for every $1 invested in the campaign.