Oregon Meets Tough Economy With Aggressive Fall Travel Campaign

New Strategy Attracts Culinary Travelers with Inventive Marketing Tactics

Aug 27, 2009, 16:02 ET from Travel Oregon

SALEM, Ore., Aug. 27 /PRNewswire/ -- As consumers scale back household budgets, they are taking shorter trips and staying closer to home. To capture that market, Travel Oregon is launching its largest culinary campaign ever. A nearly one million dollar investment, the 2009 Oregon Bounty campaign is designed to inspire travel to and within the state during the fall harvest season.

(Logo: http://www.newscom.com/cgi-bin/prnh/20071001/AQM187LOGO-b)

The new campaign includes: a comprehensive food and drink website; illustrated, culinary-themed maps of Oregon's regions to be distributed by "street teams" in key markets; online video vignettes showcasing some of Oregon's culinary masters; extensive online advertising; and an interactive contest where consumers submit their own "video resumes" for a chance to win one of seven Oregon cuisine internships, or "Cuisinternships" (pronounced quiz-een-turn-ships).

"Using these creative tactics is an innovative and personal way to deliver the Oregon Bounty message directly to potential visitors," said Todd Davidson, CEO of Travel Oregon. "It communicates the Oregon culinary experience via intimate and accessible sources, as a friend might recommend a destination to another. And it points to the type of experience Oregon Bounty offers. Here, visitors can meet the culinary artisans behind our exceptional products, which makes a trip more authentic, and Oregon a must-see destination," he said.

Inspiration Maps To Be Distributed by "Street Teams"

With fresh brand creative (view here: http://traveloregon.mediaroom.com), the fall campaign features "inspiration maps" that highlight iconic gems and insider tips in each of Oregon's tourism regions. Seven limited edition poster-sized maps suggest three- to five-day road trips with out-of-the-ordinary places to eat, sleep and play. The call to action invites travelers to visit Travel Oregon's new food and drink website, www.TravelOregon.com/Bounty, to explore more ideas and plan trips.

The maps will be inserted in regional editions of travel and culinary magazines such as Sunset and Wine Spectator. They will also be distributed in coffee shops, newspaper stands, book stores, welcome centers and other gathering places by "street teams" in September and October. The teams will place regional maps that are closest to that travel area; e.g., maps of Greater Portland and the

Willamette Valley in Seattle locations; Southern Oregon and Oregon Coast maps in San Francisco.

Street team visits to area locations will be announced via Twitter@TravelOregon and Facebook (Facebook.com/TravelOregon). Local residents who follow the street teams will get first opportunity to pick up limited edition, large-scale maps featuring whimsical illustrations of Oregon's travel treasures, and potentially collect all seven.

Dream On. . .Win an Oregon Bounty Cuisinternship

This year, Travel Oregon is offering an added incentive to experience Oregon: the "Oregon Bounty Cuisinternship" contest. Seven winners will spend a week with seven of Oregon's finest culinary masters--Oregon "dreamers" who fulfilled their own culinary vision in this state (watch videos and learn about them here: www.TravelOregon.com/Bounty). The seven Cuisinternship winners will participate in an all-expenses paid (including airfare and lodging), five-night and six-day apprenticeship learning how to become an Oregon winemaker, chef, brew master, rancher, fisherman, craft distiller, or artisan chocolate and cheese maker.

To give visitors an idea of what they can anticipate on their trip, Travel Oregon has produced video vignettes of each culinary mentor and the experience their Cuisinternship offers. To view the videos and enter the contest, consumers can visit the Oregon Cuisinternship website, www.TravelOregon.com/Bounty, upload their own short video, and write a Twitter-length statement of 140 characters or less about why they are the ideal candidate to win one of seven culinary "dream jobs." The contest runs Aug. 24-Sept. 18, 2009.

Innovative Social Media & Public Relations Stimulate Conversations

Online media, which comprises an unprecedented 51 percent of total Oregon Bounty advertising this year, will entice viewers to enter the Cuisinternship contest. In addition, a seven-market radio promotion will air August through October. The promotion, called "On the Road with Oregon Bounty," introduces listeners to the seven culinary artisans who are serving as mentors in the "Oregon Bounty Cuisinternship" contest.

Concurrently, Travel Oregon invited seven expert culinary bloggers to judge contest entries and share their opinions of Oregon's artisanal culinary products on their blogs.

New York media will get a taste of Oregon's abundant artisan foods and drinks at an invitation-only event on Oct. 20, called Food Fete. Oregon food and beverage companies interested in participating can contact Jeff Davis of Food Fete at http://www.foodfete.wordpress.com/forms.

"This campaign was developed to get people talking about Oregon as a place where you can still have an authentic culinary experience and meet the artisans who create these incredible products," said Kevin Wright, Director of Consumer Marketing for Travel Oregon. "We're integrating a variety of media platforms to connect with potential visitors at any stage of their trip planning process. They'll find our inspiration maps in a local coffee shop, read about the Cuisinternship contest on a foodie blog or watch videos of Oregon artisans on YouTube. Wherever travelers get their inspiration, we'll be there, inviting them to share Oregon Bounty," said Wright.

About Oregon Bounty and Travel Oregon

The annual statewide Oregon Bounty promotion celebrates the state's culinary abundance during three months of unique travel experiences, fall harvest events and special overnight packages at historic inns and hotels--all designed to highlight Oregon's diverse and plentiful culinary landscape. Oregon Bounty is produced by the Oregon Tourism Commission, dba Travel Oregon--with support from Oregon's regional destination marketing organizations, Oregon Wine Board, Oregon Lodging Association, Oregon Restaurant Association, Oregon Bed and Breakfast Guild, and Brand Oregon, among others--with the goal of encouraging economic growth and enhancing the quality of life in Oregon through a strengthened economic impact of tourism statewide. Travel Oregon collaborates extensively with local communities, industry associations, government agencies and private businesses, and is proud to grow the Oregon Bounty promotion as a key campaign in the state's $8.4 billion tourism industry, helping Oregon to be recognized as a not-to-be-missed culinary travel destination. Visit www.TravelOregon.com for more information.

SOURCE Travel Oregon