Industries like tourism were forced to roll with the punches.
RAPID CITY, S.D. — In the last two years during the pandemic, many things have changed from gathering in public places to how business is conducted everyday, which includes marketing.
Industries like tourism were forced to roll with the punches. For example, the South Dakota Department of Tourism began marketing to two separate groups of people with those who are ready to travel and those who aren’t.
“What we said to those those folks was when the time is right for you and you want to start traveling, great places are waiting,” said Jim Hagen, the South Dakota Secretary of Tourism. “There was a segment of the American population who said we’re going to travel today. We’re ready to travel and so our message to them was go to great places. We’re ready to welcome you. We’re ready to keep you safe.”
That message has made its way to Rapid City where travel businesses have been forced to use other tactics that are based more on social media. Some of these tactics include user-generated content along with photos and videos of the wintery Black Hills outdoors.
“People that have visited the area that don’t live here, sharing their experience seems to have a huge impact,” said Stacie Granum, the Interim President and CEO of Visit Rapid City.
In fact, that tactic helped Visit Rapid City during the offseason in the winter.
“We saw a really high engagement rate,” Granum said. “There was interest in it and we also did see more visitors than we had in the past in that office.”
For an area that typically sees one to two percent growth, matching a year where a 12.4 percent rise with only 11 months of data seems like a tall task.
However, if forecasted studies by the travel industry say anything, it’s that people will be coming back.
“It all leads to that we’re going to have another great year,” Granum said. “Now will it top 2021? That’s hard to say. We just have to take it week by week.”
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