Thursday, July 26, 2007
Holly Springs Tourism and Recreation Bureau
Many do not think about their role in tourism or the role tourism plays in their day-to-day life. In fact, few people associate travel and tourism with business and commerce; yet the economic, social and cultural benefits tourism brings to the local community, to the nation, and to the world at large, has a surprising impact.
Just how important is tourism?
Travel and tourism — encompassing transportation, catering, accommodations, recreation and services for travelers — is actually the world’s largest industry and generator of jobs. Mississippi state tax revenues collected for tourism totaled $377.5 million, which means 9% of the state’s $4.26 billion income for 2006 can be attributed to tourism activities.
Last year tourists spent over $10.6 million in Marshall County alone! That number is a huge increase from previous years — and was recorded at a time when tourism revenues were actually plummeting throughout the state! That alone shows the great potential of our tiny community.
From any perspective — quality, quantity, or variety — Holly Springs has much to offer visitors. It has been a busy five months here in the tourism office and I have thoroughly enjoyed getting to know Holly Springs and its citizens. I never imagined such a vibrant community with such a deep, colorful past existed, and I have been privileged to help showcase everything Holly Springs has to offer!
Our current strategy to promote our tourist attractions involves targeting nearby areas like Memphis and appealing to budget-conscious consumers that are within a short driving distance — people who are concerned about rising gas prices and may be limiting their pleasure trips. We are doing so by beginning to run consistent advertising in area newspapers, magazines and even radio! You may have heard a few little spots we tried out on Q107.5 recently reaching over 50,000 listeners per week! We will continue to test out audiences to make sure we get the most bang for our buck!
Our working theme is “There’s more south of Memphis than you think!” We plan to raise interest and awareness of all we have to offer by also promoting our new, improved, user friendly website (www.visithollysprings.org) showcasing the splendor of Holly Springs.
After months of work it is still under construction but we plan to have a scrapbook photo gallery of attractions and past events, an interactive tour map users can actually print from their home computer, coupons and also giveaways to help draw more attention to our area.
We are also partnering with the Memphis Tourism Bureau by including coupons on their website (www.memphistravel.com) for Holly Springs’ businesses and attractions. It’s completely free, so merchants please contact us if you’d like to feature a coupon for your business or to offer something we can include in a giveaway package!
Via The South Reporter, we plan to monthly bring you fresh news of the tourism happenings that impact our community, as well as previews of our plans for promoting Holly Springs to the rest of the world.
Thank you to everyone who continues to support your tourism office. For information on any of our projects, to offer assistance, or to just bounce around a few ideas, please give us a call or just stop by!
Tourism Traffic report: May- June 2007
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