The Destination Marketing team leads the strategy and execution of all marketing initiatives developed through research and collaboration to maximize visibility regionally, nationally and internationally. This research includes information compiled from VisaVue, SMARI, Visit California and other industry research partners.
Visit GPS' collaborative strategies to market Greater Palm Springs’ unique brand include our diversified co-ops featuring our award-winning consumer-facing marketing campaign. Co-ops include television, print, billboard and digital programs providing a unified message across all distribution channels.
In 2019, there will be an increased focus on customized digital campaigns that inspire travel to Greater Palm Springs with targeted content and creative. Working together with our nine Partner cities proves that unifying our message for the destination as a whole adds value and positions us as a stronger, more cohesive destination. Visit GPS' goal is determining areas in which to collaborate on strategies and campaigns to eliminate redundancies and stretch each Partner’s reach.
CONVENTION SALES MARKETING
New research through Destination Analysts has provided Visit GPS with valuable information to guide our marketing initiatives to meeting planners. In 2019, Visit GPS will launch a new meetings campaign to build awareness among meeting professionals, address misconceptions about the destination and position Greater Palm Springs as a premier destination for meetings and conventions.
Visit GPS will leverage the brand platform on all major meeting and conventions platforms to create high funnel awareness of Greater Palm Springs. We will diversify our strategy with traditional and technology-based distribution channels including print, television, digital, radio, social media and communications, creating an awareness-building message targeted to demographic segments our research has identified.
ADVOCACY, ENGAGEMENT AND COMMUNICATIONS
Visit GPS is committed to a wide-ranging destination/industry advocacy and communications plan to educate elected officials, affected stakeholders and the public as to the value and importance of the industry and the role of Visit Greater Palm Springs.
As advocates of the U.S. Travel Association's initiatives, Visit GPS participates in promoting National Tourism Week with the annual Oasis Awards, as well as major national tourism issues throughout the year that relate to the power and importance of travel. We will continue to engage Visit GPS Board of Directors in their role as stewards and community leaders to enhance general business understanding and commitment.
Over the last five years, Visit GPS has taken an active role in marketing the urgent need to restore the Salton Sea aimed at tourism and quality of life issues through a variety of marketing programs and two economic impact studies. In spring 2018, Visit GPS unveiled another major marketing initiative for the Salton Sea prompting support for a bond measure that could fund the sea’s 10-year mitigation plan adopted by the state. California voters approved the bond measure Proposition 68 in June, which includes $200 million in funding toward Salton Sea preservation projects.
In 2019, Visit GPS will also continue its commitment to the 2013 State Rail Plan as one of the priorities in the Destination Development Plan implementation. Visit GPS recognizes the positive impact that increased passenger rail service from Los Angeles to Greater Palm Springs will have on the destination and tourism industry.
Visit GPS has taken an active role in pursuit of this vision and continues to participate in regional rail plan forums.
FINANCIAL AND ADMINISTRATIVE OPERATIONS
Under the guidance of the Chief Operating Officer, Visit GPS is continuing to elevate and upgrade its operations by establishing more effective bylaws, working effectively with the Tourism Business Improvement District, creating new departments and positions and upgrading internal processes to meet new and future needs in the changing tourism climate.
On July 1, 2018, the JPA approved the operating budget for fiscal year 2018/2019. Visit GPS maintains three governmental type funds: Tourism Business Improvement District (TBID), city/county funding and private funding:
- The TBID represents 83.7% of total funding and is sourced from a 3% assessment levied on overnight guests staying at hotels with 50 or more rooms. The Agua Caliente Band of Cahuilla Indians also participates in the TBID.
- City funding represents 9.6% of total funding to Visit GPS. The County of Riverside contributes to this funding for those areas outside of city jurisdiction, and the Agua Caliente Band of Cahuilla Indians makes a voluntary contribution to this portion of the fund on a quarterly basis.
- Private funds represent 6.7% of overall funding and include revenue received through partnership, event hosting, advertising co-ops, joint share participation, and local businesses, cities and interest.
The Director of Human Resources is dedicated to implementing strategies to enhance and elevate employee engagement and expertise while ensuring a diverse and conflict-free workplace. Priorities for 2019 include creating a series of employee development sessions focused on communication, team-building and emotional intelligence; enhancing Visit GPS' emergency response planning; and employee training programs aimed at expanding job performance and improving workplace standards. Additionally, the Director of Human Resources will have an active role in the rollout of the Certified Tourism Ambassador program.