The official e-newsletter of the Sioux Falls Convention & Visitors Bureau.
Welcome to our first edition of The Visitor Beat! We are excited to bring you this monthly look inside the Sioux Falls visitor industry. We will share recent industry news, show you what we are working on and introduce you to some of the faces that make our city truly the heart of America. We look forward to sharing our work in the visitor industry with the broader business community in partnership with SiouxFalls.business. Please let us know if your organization has news to share.
Summer Brings out the Best in Tourism
Summer in Sioux Falls is what many of us wait for each year. Our calendars are filled with events, the parks are lush and beautiful, the bike trails are humming and visitors from around the world explore our many attractions and activities! This summer has been no exception. The Falls Park Visitor Information Center has welcomed visitors from over 50 countries plus every state. Canada, Australia, Germany, England, Belgium, Spain, Bulgaria, India, Japan, and New Zealand top the list of countries visiting in September while South Dakota, Minnesota, Texas, Nebraska, Illinois, Iowa, Missouri, California, Wisconsin, and North Dakota were the top ten states.
Along with tourism, conventions, meetings, and events have also been a big draw for Sioux Falls this summer. Hotels are not the only businesses who benefit from all these visitors. Restaurants, retailers, gas stations, rental car agencies, airlines, attractions, and many more feel the impact of the visitor industry. Visitors don’t come to Sioux Falls just to stay in a hotel. They come to experience all the wonderful things our city has to offer!
In 2017, the CVB documented an estimate of over 1.65 million visitors to Sioux Falls creating over $403 million in estimated economic benefit to the Sioux Falls community. Without visitors to our community, citizens would see an increase on their taxes every year.
CVB Has Success at ASAE
In August CVB Sales Team members Alexandra LeBlanc, Anna Eliason, and Jackie Wentworth represented Sioux Falls at the annual show for ASAE (American Society of Association Executives) in Chicago. ASAE is one of the premier shows for meeting planners across the country, making it an ideal time to acquire leads for potential new business. The CVB had custom giant dice made for an interactive element that allowed planners to roll the dice to try to win various prizes while learning about Sioux Falls. The Sioux Falls booth was a huge success as it received the highest number of engagements ever with over 250 badge scans. The team came home with many leads to follow-up on for potential new business. Over 200 planners walked away with Sioux Falls swag to promote our city.
Sioux Falls Will Be Represented at National Tour Show
CVB Sales Manager, Jackie Wentworth, will be representing Sioux Falls at the National Tour Association’s annual Travel Exchange in Milwaukee next month. Jackie will be meeting with both domestic and international tour operators to showcase the best of Sioux Falls in hopes of convincing these tour operators to bring their group to our city. The economic impact of the group tour industry has a great deal of potential. A motorcoach staying just one night in Sioux Falls will generate over $7,500 of direct spending economic impact to the city by providing those visitors with lodging, dining, recreation, and shopping.
CVB to Welcome Hunters at Airport
The CVB’s annual “Hunter’s Celebration” will be held at the Sioux Falls Regional Airport October 18-19, opening weekend of the 2018 pheasant hunting season. Local businesses participating in welcoming pheasant hunters will join in the fun as the CVB rolls out the red carpet to welcome hunters flying in from across the country. Hunters will be greeted with cookies and coffee, Sioux Falls visitor information, and a small gift to show the CVB’s appreciation for them flying into Sioux Falls.
New Strategies Target Leisure Travelers
Based on the timing of engagements from prior shoulder season marketing efforts this year’s campaign launched the first week of October to allow two different but complimentary phases. The first phase will run October 1-December 31, 2018 and be lead-generating through two sweepstakes giveaways. The second phase will focus on awareness and driving hotel bookings through evergreen content. Each phase and persona will have unique imagery and messaging to align with the seasonal reasons to travel to Sioux Falls, including use of social channels, media placement, and email marketing. This campaign is supported by matching funds through the South Dakota Department of Tourism.
Celebrating 20 Years
We are celebrating Kathie Puthoff for 20 years of service as Administrative Assistant to the Executive Director at the CVB. Kathie’s knowledge, organizational skills, and attention to detail keeps the office operating effectively and efficiently. She is a trusted confidante who exemplifies the values of our team.
One Millionth Visitor
The Butterfly House & Aquarium recently recorded its one millionth visitor when a family of three walked through the door. Visitor tracking has been occurring since the Butterfly House opened in 2002, and those visitation numbers increased even more when they added aquariums in 2011. The family received treats and a basket full of goodies.
Catching the Competition
In cities like St. Louis and Rapid City construction is booming for development projects meant to attract visitors. Read more about keeping up with the competition.
Hotel construction booming in St. Louis to help attract conventions (Source: Fox2now St. Louis)
Ferris wheel, walking path over Omaha St. envisioned for promenade (Source: Rapidcityjournal.com)
Stay in the Know!
Sign-up to be included on our monthly distribution list to receive the latest news and happenings in the Sioux Falls visitor industry.