You won’t find bigger evangelists for Dallas than its convention and visitors bureau, but it hasn’t always been easy to spread the word about what makes the city such a great place to visit. Big D needed a bigger audience to understand that, like its slogan says, “Big things happen here.”
The strategies we delivered for VisitDallas.com not only helped fill hotels with out-of-towners, they introduced Dallas neighborhoods and suburbs to one another as well.
Going from underdog to game-changer
Our first project was to help the Dallas Sports Commission attract sports events to the city and to generate buzz for those events with North Texas audiences, even when local teams weren’t involved at all. (No judgment on the Cowboys or anything.)
We built a strategy and a site that truly changed the game for how civic sports commissions operate. Our work allowed the sports commission to attract prime-time events and lesser-known pastimes as well. Super Bowls are great targets, but so are youth bowling tournaments and cheerleading championships.
The impact we had
- A redesigned site that targeted not just meeting planners and event committees, but local audiences as well.
- The ability to build microsites for events that typically did not have a large digital presence on their own. These microsites let the commission serve as a digital concierge for audiences and positioned the commission well to attract more events.
Curating the Dallas experience
We expanded the concept of the digital concierge beyond the North Texas sports world. That meant creating the means for VisitDallas.com to become the go-to resource for curated itineraries and listings for a variety of audience segments.
What started as a listings service quickly evolved into easy-to-manage guides for margarita lovers, architecture buffs, budget-conscious travelers – any group that could indulge its passion in Dallas. The site now had the ability to match interests with geographic locations in town, helping tourists from near and far find hot spots right under their noses.
The impact we had
- A category ecosystem within the Visit Dallas brand that allowed individual pieces of content within the site to complement and even thrive from one another.
- A strategy for more engaging content that provided utility, evidenced by metrics showing that more than 50 percent of users consumed entire pages, top to bottom.
Spreading the word, delivering the audience
Where once VisitDallas.com listed 25 or 50 events, our platform and strategy led to the site listing more than 500 events. By creating and delivering a richer content experience with itineraries, including blog posts and guides, we boosted the site’s credibility – and its relevance.
Even as the new approach lured more conventions to town and led to more “heads in beds” for hotels, local traffic to the site increased as well, boosted by organic search results that weren’t dependent on ads or Yelp reviews.
As data showed that the results of the strategy accomplished the obvious mission of attracting out-of-town tourists, the accompanying boost in local visitors was worth celebrating, too. In making it easier for a city to sell itself, we helped Dallas get to know itself better as well.