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Chamber of Commerce serving Johnson City/Jonesborough/Washington: “Southern Dozen” Greatest Motorcycle Rides

2013 ACE: Best of Show

The Johnson City Convention & Visitors Bureau along with the local Harley Owners Group (HOG) created 12 motorcycle rides now known as the Southern Dozen to attract and cater to a demographic of visitors that had not always been widely accepted. Through our research, we discovered that a motorcycle enthusiast was one of the fastest growing travel niches. The CVB realized that the motorcycle community held great potential to increase visitors and economic impact through hosting leisure riders, rallies and other motorcycle groups. The demographic of these potential visitors was a perfect match for our area and exact target market; they had disposable income, a flexible travel schedule and generally traveled in groups or packs of riders.   


Date: December 23, 2013
Organization: Chamber of Commerce serving Johnson City/Jonesborough/Washington
City: Johnson City, Tennessee

clientuploads/ACE/SouthernDozen.jpgSYNOPSIS:

The Johnson City Convention & Visitors Bureau along with the local Harley Owners Group (HOG) created 12 motorcycle rides now known as the Southern Dozen to attract and cater to a demographic of visitors that had not always been widely accepted. Through our research, we discovered that a motorcycle enthusiast was one of the fastest growing travel niches. The CVB realized that the motorcycle community held great potential to increase visitors and economic impact through hosting leisure riders, rallies and other motorcycle groups. The demographic of these potential visitors was a perfect match for our area and exact target market; they had disposable income, a flexible travel schedule and generally traveled in groups or packs of riders.

Our goal was to increase awareness for Johnson City and to be recognized as the home to twelve of the South’s best motorcycle rides through our interactive contest “Choose Your Wheels, Choose Your Ride” via Facebook. This effort utilized our Chamber members for the prize packages, and encouraged our hotels to provide packages that would ultimately provide results for additional room bookings. The goal of the campaign was to have at least 100 people register for the contest via our Facebook page.

We launched a fully integrated marketing plan that included our contest, an interactive website, quick glimpse videos for each ride, a ride brochure that provided turn, by turn instructions, and content based social media presence. This was further supported by a strategic online and print-based advertising campaign. We utilized public relations efforts by reaching out to local, regional, and national freelance motorcycle writers, along with editors of some of the top touring motorcycle publications. Additional elements included direct mail, and placement of a back-lit duratran display at the highly visited I-26 West Welcome Center.

At the conclusion of the contest, we awarded two prize packages to a male and female motorcycle rider. The male won a leather vest, with our Southern Dozen logo embossed on the back; tickets to the Spring NASCAR Race at Bristol Motor Speedway and $100 gas card. A value of $700.00 all donated by our Chamber membership. The female winner won a leather vest with logo embossed, two night stay at our Four Diamond hotel, with spa treatment included, as well as a $100 gas card. Again, all donated by our members and a value of $500.00.

The paid advertising campaign consisted of print and online ads placed in Roadrunner magazine, Tennessee Department of Tourist Development Newsletter and American Road. Through our public relations efforts, Tennessee Home & Farm magazine provided us a four page advertorial spread on The Southern Dozen. The value of that effort was more than $10,000.00.

With an overwhelming response from our Chamber members and the consumers, we are pleased to report our in-kind budget was $12,500.00 and our budget for advertising and marketing was $33,300.00, we had 2,534 visits to our web site and average of 1,357 on our Facebook page, the primary audience was 47 percentage female and 53 percentage male.

The contest had 141 people who entered, we generated 200 rooms nights and 424 people come to stay and ride. The Economic Impact of their visits was $143,437.50.

It was a great campaign that involved our Chamber members in planning and execution of a plan that catered to a niche market. Our partners were pleased with the results and want to expand our efforts and their participation in the future. It is absolutely deserving of the recognition of a prestigious ACE Award. 

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