Overview and Structural Cooperation
In 2015, to build further awareness and visibility in selected overseas markets, Travel South USA organized the Global Partner Program (GPP). Through collaborative marketing tactics and shared expenses, participating states are able to extend their reach and have in-country promotional efforts on a year-round basis. The focus of this cooperation will be targeting trade and media, however, consumer outreach and Brand USA co-op programs will be considered as well. The Global Partner Program provides a foundational base from which to work for the states that choose to participate. It offers states a vehicle to have in-country representatives without having direct contracts and spending hundreds of thousands of dollars.
The Global Partner Program is a "Pay-to-Play" package. These value-added services are provided for the subscribers to each market program, and only participating states and their partners are included in said programming.
Foundation Market TacticsAs outlined in Travel South USA's FY16/17 Marketing Plan and Program of Work, each participating state receives all of the foundational market tactics for Australia, Brazil, China, Benelux, France, & Italy, which includes:
- Travel South USA digital presence - websites & social media
- Research & trend analysis
- Distribution/reprints of Travel South USA sections of the Brand USA Inspiration Guide
- TSUSA's International Showcase & Super FAMs
- Ad hoc projects
- Full year-round in-market representation
- Enhanced research & product/trend analysis
- Travel trade co-op opportunities
- Brand USA co-op opportunities
- Appointment assistance at IPW
- Travel trade & journalist outreach
Full Year-Round Representation Includes:
Global Partner Program Meetings & Monthly ReportsIn-country rep firms will hold two meetings annually with Global Partner Program participants to discuss key objectives; these meetings will take place during International Showcase (Nov/Dec) and IPW (May/Jun). Conference calls may be used in lieu of face-to-face meetings, if necessary.
In-country rep firms will submit a monthly report to Travel South USA summarizing market trends and news, all sales and marketing activities, contacts made, new programs in progress, and media value summary. Reports include press clippings and monthly expenditure breakdowns and are accessible via Boardpaq.com to participating states.
In-country rep firms will complete in-office sales calls and in-office staff presentations to tour operators focused on Visit USA product and, specifically, southern destinations. Each country's work plan varies; however, firms are required to complete a minimum of four (4) monthly in-office sales calls and twice (2) monthly staff presentations/training sessions to tour operators or travel agents, reaching 100+ operators/agents annually. Those rep firms will also attend and be active in the Visit USA committees and attend IPW.
Travel Trade Sales Calls & Seminars
In-country rep firms will create and maintain beneficial relationships with the management and staff of U.S. air carriers and foreign airlines for the purpose of developing familiarization programs, travel trade missions, and promotional events.
Air Carrier Relationships
In-country rep firms will write, edit, and distribute newsletters to Visit USA Committee trade contacts and consumers. Each country's work plan varies; however, firms are required to complete a minimum of four (4) communications annually.
Articles for Newsletters
In-country rep firms will write, edit, and distribute press releases as necessary, up to 4x annually, included at no additional cost. The rep firm will coordinate follow up and report.
In-country rep firms will create a product inventory as a comparable point and reference for the marketing efforts regarding trade. The product inventory will summarize the following items:
Enhanced Trade Research & Product Analysis
- Complete overview of all tour operators' product offerings in the South
- Short description of the offered product - featuring the participating states
- Published in brochure, online, or both
- Number of days offered per package/tour
- Type of product: group tour, fly & drive, fixed, or flex
- Seasons in which the tour is offered
In-country rep firms will stay current with opportunities created by Brand USA co-ops. Travel South USA, the reps, and the Global Partner Program participants will review opportunities on a bi-annual basis (Nov/Dec & May/Jun) to decide what, if any, opportunities may be considered.
Brand USA Co-ops
Specific Travel Trade & Journalist Activities
- Familiarization Tours: In-country reps will coordinate and organize Visiting Journalist and Travel Trade familiarization tours on a per project basis. We encourage operators to participate in the Super FAMs offered in conjunction with International Showcase, so rarely host operators. Based on budgets, TSUSA will coordinate the flights, ground services, transportation, schedule of activities and other necessary items as determined for media. This is exclusively for vetted and credentialed media and requests are on a case by case basis. TSUSA standard practice includes at least 2 states involved and we prefer 3 state itineraries.
- Trade Shows/Road Shows: In-country reps will organize and staff trade shows/road shows as agreed upon within budget.
In-country rep firm will handle the distribution of tourism information to the in-country trade on behalf of the participating states.
Travel Trade Fulfillment
The importance of creating an online community is evident. Travel South USA will work with each country to recommend the appropriate social channel - Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram. Travel South USA will organize a small advertising campaign best directed by the in-country rep firm.
Ad Hoc Programming for Social Media
Based on the number of participating states and budget available, every participating state will have a post at least once a week to every 6/8 working days. Rep firms will work directly with each state to craft messaging and imagery to support the plan that is effective for each state.