Tag Archives: scottsdale convention and visitors bureau

City of Scottsdale charges into tangential tourism effects of 2015 Super Bowl and Phoenix Open. Pictured: Ornate flood control dike in Scottsdale. 123RF.com, Copyright: DesertSolitaire

Scottsdale prepares for the Super Bowl effect

Although the City of Scottsdale is not the host of the 2015 Super Bowl, there are many events that will attract visitors during their stay for the major sporting event.

“Scottsdale’s entertainment district is without a doubt a pull for Super Bowl visitors who are looking to celebrate at bars and clubs,” said Megan Doyle, Scottsdale Convention and Visitors Bureau community affairs manager. “That said, it’s only a fraction of what attracts visitors to Scottsdale.”

The nice weather in Scottsdale will encourage visitors to participate in outdoor activities such as Jeep tours or hiking in the McDowell Sonoran Preserve, said Doyle. With the Waste Management Phoenix Open running from Jan. 26 to Feb. 1 at TPC Scottsdale, coinciding with the Super Bowl, it will be a busy time for Scottsdale. The city will even be the host of the ESPN Fan Fest the week leading up to the game.

“It’s Scottsdale―people just for some reason enjoy coming to our city, for whatever it may be,” said Mariah Schultz, head of operations for Signature Flight at Scottsdale Airport.

When the Super Bowl was last in the Valley in 2008, Doyle said Scottsdale-area hotel occupancy reached 93.8 percent. According to the Scottsdale Convention and Visitors Bureau, many hotels have already been sold out for months, and several others have just limited availability during that week.

In 2012, the Waste Management Phoenix Open brought 150,000 to Scottsdale alone. Because this event will be overlapping with the Super Bowl, which is expected to bring 100,000 people to the area, Doyle said that they are expecting a tremendous increase in visitation this time around.

Although the Super Bowl takes place in Glendale, the Scottsdale Airport is a popular location for travelers to fly into during the event.

“For Super Bowl weekend in 2008―Tuesday through Thursday, we experienced about a 54% increase in airport operations when compared to that weekend the year before in 2007,” said Sarah Ferrara, aviation planning and outreach coordinator for the Scottsdale Airport. “We expect a similar increase in operations for this year’s Super Bowl weekend.”

In order to combat airport traffic and help make the process smoother for travelers, two of the fixed-based operators at the Scottsdale Airport will be taking reservations for departures from the airport from 5 p.m. Super Bowl Feb. 1 and 2, according to the Scottsdale Airport Operations Plan.

In order to accommodate some of the visitor traffic, not only during the Super Bowl but also during the season with heavy tourism, the city will be providing a hospitality trolley for the second year in a row. This trolley, called the Day Tripper, will run along Scottsdale Road between Scottsdale Fashion Square and the Fairmont Scottsdale Princess, according to Holly Walter, transportation public information officer for the City of Scottsdale.

Walter said Scottsdale has a highly advanced Traffic Management Center that allows for the management of the road conditions during events like the Super Bowl. They are able to control traffic via cameras, control signals and adjust their timing and more. This will help combat traffic surrounding events like the ESPN Fan Fest that will be taking place in the downtown Scottsdale area.

“As a result, police officers don’t have to spend their time directing traffic―they can handle other public safety duties while working special events,” Walter said. “We plan to have the TMC staffed 24/7 for the two week period surrounding the Super Bowl.”

In order to ease traffic congestion and improve safety within designated areas of the downtown area, Walter said the city council would be considering a transportation safety zone ordinance drafted by members of the police department, transportation, City Manager’s Office and City Attorney’s Office. This will likely be considered by the city council in November or December.

Flagstaff, Scottsdale CVB - AZ Business Magazine January/February 2012

Flagstaff And Scottsdale CVB See Solid Returns On Investment

Flagstaff Convention and Visitors Bureau and the Scottsdale CVB see dividends from marketing dollars spent

The old saying, “You have to spend money to make money” is especially true in the case of Arizona tourism. Two cases in point are the Flagstaff and Scottsdale Convention and Visitors Bureaus (CVBs). They can quantifiably demonstrate that investing in tourism creates a return.

“We’ve always done a good job of marketing Scottsdale,” said Rachel Sacco, president and CEO of the Scottsdale CVB. “We know it’s the right message because visitors are responding.”

The Scottsdale CVB’s 2010-11 annual budget is $9.7 million and generates $31 in economic impact for every $1 invested in the organization. The Flagstaff CVB has a budget of $1.5 million and helps spur an economic impact of $501 million for the region.

Much of the funding for tourism marketing comes from visitors themselves.

In March 2010, Scottsdale voters passed a 2 percent increase in the city’s bed tax, bringing it to 5 percent. This, combined with an increase in occupancy, led to a 79 percent jump in bed-tax collections from 2009-10 to 2010-11. Half of the new monies support capital projects and special events; the other half supports marketing efforts.

In Flagstaff, the CVB is a division of the city and is fully funded by a portion of the 2 percent “BBB” tax, which stands for “bed, board and booze,” or hotels, restaurants and bars. It generates roughly $5.2 million, and the CVB gets 30 percent of that. The city council allocated an additional $250,000 in marketing dollars to the CVB from March to June 2009 from the city’s Economic Incentive Fund. Flagstaff CVB director Heather Ainardi said that investment helped Flagstaff see a slight bump in April and May of 2009 and prevent big tourism losses in the long run.

“When the rest of the state had double digit declines (in tourism indicators),” Ainardi said, “we were only having minor 2 to 3 percent drops.”

Average daily rates from hotel bookings and revenues per available room were up in 2011 in both Flagstaff and Scottsdale. Occupancy also was up in Scottsdale. And independent studies showed 91 percent of all people who received a Scottsdale visitors guide either made a booking or visited Scottsdale within the next year. Sacco attributes the high number to target marketing.

First, they pinpoint areas that have always had a high interest in Scottsdale: chilly places such as Canada, Minnesota, San Francisco, Chicago, Denver and parts of the East Coast.
Second, they invest in knowing their customers: What do they read? Which activities do they like?

“We won’t send someone who’s interested in art a message about sports” and vice-versa, Sacco said. “We know what messages resonate with them.”

As one result of this targeting, sports bookings have increased 160 percent, she added. Groups and meetings contribute $64.8 million in economic impact.

The Scottsdale CVB should see their budget increase further this coming year to $10.5 million, which hopefully will mean even more of an uptick in tourists.

“The less ability we have to communicate to visitors why they should come here, the less revenue that is brought in,” Sacco said.

For more information about the Flagstaff CVB or the Scottsdale CVB, visit the following links:

flagstaffarizona.org
scottsdalecvb.com

Arizona Business Magazine January/February 2012