Visitor Numbers Steadily Increasing Through Marketing Campaigns
Despite the best efforts of the devastating oil spill that hit America’s gulf coast, tourism in Florida is still going strong. Since the spill, The Sunshine State has seen around 20.8 million visitors, a figure that is a 3.5% increase from the second half of 2009. The majority of the visitor numbers came from international tourism with an increase of 11.9% compared to domestic visitors that have increased by 3.5%. Florida marketing executives have looked into the rise and have come up with a number of explanations for the unexpected boost. Firstly, added flights to American from well known airlines have increased visitor numbers dramatically, making it easier than ever to book flights to Florida. A spokesman for Florida’s tourism marketing team has explained that “Now we’re seeing the real benefits of adding that service, despite our greatest fears, we were not drowned by either the perception or the reality of the oil spill. And the life jacket we’re wearing is international.”
Intense marketing campaigns were launched shortly after the disaster to combat the images of oily shores from the original spill in the Gulf of Mexico. BP itself has donated around $2.5 million towards tourism marketing which has been sued to fund these aggressive marketing campaigns. Pictures of President Obama have also been released showing him swimming in the waters around the Gulf of Mexico with his daughter, another positive tactic to encourage visitors back into America’s waters. With visitor numbers steadily increasing, tourism officials are expecting to battle through the negative publicity and bring even more visitors back to Florida’s sunny shores.