Q: The Scottsdale brand has historically been successful, so why change now?
A: Travel trends, audiences, and the ways people like to be communicated with all change over time. In order for Scottsdale’s brand to remain successful and relevant for years to come, it was necessary for Experience Scottsdale to evaluate its brand to determine its effectiveness, to research consumer perceptions of Scottsdale, and to refine our marketing and messaging strategies.
Q: What did the research tell us?
A: The extensive research identified some key takeaways. More findings are available in the Research & Testing section of the website.
Q: How is Scottsdale’s brand changing?
A: Previously, the Scottsdale brand was focused on selling each destination attribute – golf, spa, dining, arts, shopping, resorts, etc. However, today’s traveler is looking for more than a laundry list of features. Instead, a brand should create an emotional connection with consumers that allows them to gain insight into how a visit to Scottsdale will make them feel. Scottsdale’s new brand focuses on experiences and moments that can be had, no matter what age, and how it feels to be in Scottsdale.
Q: What is Scottsdale’s new brand?
A: Scottsdale’s new brand is Effortless Revitalization – whether you’re looking to unplug or get charged up, you just leave Scottsdale feeling better than when you arrived.
Q: Does this mean we are not going to talk about all the qualities that makes Scottsdale great?
A: There is a place in our initiatives to tell the full, complete story of Scottsdale, which is through owned and earned media. It’s not possible to do this through primary, paid advertising where a clear point of view needs to be communicated. There are three different ways we are telling the Scottsdale story:
Q: What’s the voice and tone of the new brand?
A: The voice and tone of the new brand can be described with several human characteristics and attributes, which help guide brand consistency and authenticity in creative development. The new brand is contemporary, but not faddish; casual, but not sloppy; sophisticated, but not snobby; seductive but not risqué; welcoming, but not pushy; active, but not hardcore; and exciting, but not exhausting.
Q: What’s the difference between a brand and an ad campaign?
A: The Effortless Revitalization brand is Scottsdale’s singular core benefit and the basis from which all of our marketing and messaging will originate. Brands largely remain unchanged over time and help shape consumer perceptions. Consumers associate facts and emotions with brands. When potential visitors hear “Scottsdale,” we want feelings of adventure and relaxation to come to mind.
The Absolutely Scottsdale ad campaign is the first visual depiction of our new brand. An ad campaign is a series of advertisements that share a theme, tagline or hook. Ad campaigns change over time in order to grab consumers’ attention and maintain their interest. In a few years, we will likely launch a new ad campaign that still aligns with our overall brand.
Q: What are the goals of Scottsdale’s new advertising campaign?
A: Our new advertising campaign has six goals:
Q: What advertising assets are changing?
A: A new website has launched along with print ads, TV commercial, destination video, collateral materials and trade show materials – soup to nuts, everything has changed!
Q: What does the ad campaign creative look like?
A: The new ad campaign incorporates ethnic and age diversity and addresses the misperception by some that Scottsdale lacks energy and vibrancy. We are making an emotional connection with consumers by showing authentic experiences and moments that can be had while on vacation in Scottsdale.
Q: Will the new ad campaign only appeal to Millennials?
A: The new brand and ad campaign have been designed so that we can speak to three important audiences: Active Singles (19-34 years old), Young Families (35-50 years old) and Carefree Couples (51-69 years old). Through target audience profiles, we are able to shift key messaging in order to best speak to each group, taking into account age, household income, traveling habits, the tone of our messaging, and the catalyst for their vacation decisions.
Q: Will the ad campaign appeal to all of Scottsdale’s local constituents and community?
A: While the ad campaign may appeal to the local community, it is important to remember that this campaign is aimed at potential visitors who live outside the area and may not be as familiar with Scottsdale as our own residents. A few other things to keep in mind:
Q: Will Experience Scottsdale be targeting new customers or new markets?
A: The brand allows for shifts in messaging to connect with travelers in each of the audiences outlined above through a variety of mediums. Research shows that our target markets have not shifted, so we are continuing to put most of our marketing dollars into programs in New York, Chicago, San Francisco, Los Angeles, and Canada. And while some marketing strategies will shift in the coming year, we are keeping the programs that are most effective for us, including large-scale, high-impact programs, such as station dominations and train wraps.
Q: Why did the Scottsdale Convention & Visitors Bureau change its name to Experience Scottsdale?
A: There are several reasons why we have changed our name. Our new brand offered us the opportunity to more effectively deliver on traveler expectations while communicating the value offered by our organization. Research from the Destination Marketing Association International suggests that travelers do not understand why they would be interested in a convention and visitors bureau. The CVB moniker often feels bureaucratic. For Scottsdale, it often creates confusion that we are a convention center. The industry trend is to move toward more active names that are focused on travelers themselves and feel like welcoming invitations. The new monikers selected by destination marketing organizations are easy for consumers to remember, communicate desired actions, and better reflect the work the organizations do in the destinations. We also have decided to change our name to create brand consistency among our organization name, website and email addresses. Experience Scottsdale was selected after reviewing industry research, analyzing other destination marketing organization names, consulting with STRUCK, polling staff, and discussing with our Board of Directors.
Q: How long did the brand process take?
A: The entire brand process took approximately 18 months and included a brand audit, competitive analysis, focus groups and online surveys with local stakeholders as well as past and potential visitors from the United States and Canada, the creation of a brand platform followed by consumer testing, and the creation of a new advertising campaign followed by consumer testing.
Q: Why was STRUCK chosen as the creative partner for this project?
A: In order to be as transparent and inclusive as possible, we put together a selection committee composed of individuals who were highly engaged within Scottsdale’s tourism industry, had the time to commit to the process and represented varied interests. The selection committee chose STRUCK for a combination of factors, but mostly because of STRUCK’s proven background in tourism marketing, vast experience with both qualitative and quantitative research, and their track record of developing world-class creative for their clients. STRUCK’s agency mantra is built on emotion – crafting work that connects with audiences on a level that goes beyond feature, function and price. Our goal was to create a Scottsdale brand that resonates and makes an emotional connection with our customers for years to come, so we felt that STRUCK was the perfect partner to make this happen. As an out-of-market agency, STRUCK also brought to the table a fresh perspective and point of view from the lens of a potential customer and visitor.