Mayor Julián Castro kicked off a new national advertising campaign for San Antonio today by showing how one of his favorite San Antonio memories could be used as a photo in an ad. The new campaign, called "Remember the..." will use photos that are entirely generated by those who love the city best, its residents and those who travel to the city for leisure and business.
The effort will utilize a series of social media campaigns to encourage people to submit photos and brief stories of their favorite memories of times spent in San Antonio. The photos will become the actual images used in the advertising and the stories will inspire the headlines. In exchange for their photos and stories, participants will be entered to win trips to San Antonio, tickets to events such as Spurs games and a host of mobile photo accessories. The first contest starts today and will focus on encouraging local San Antonio residents to share the hidden gems that they love most about San Antonio.
"I am excited about this fresh approach to marketing our city in a way that showcases the full range of visitor options that exist in San Antonio today," said Mayor Julián Castro. "By engaging the people who know San Antonio best - our residents - to share their recommendations, I'm confident we will end up with an authentic, 21st century campaign that enhances San Antonio's reputation as a leading visitor destination."
Hospitality is a leading industry in San Antonio, which employs 100,000 locals and attracts 26 million visitors a year. The overall annual economic impact of the hospitality industry in San Antonio is $11 billion. The goal is to build upon these numbers with this unique campaign, which embraces emerging technology, creativity and the city's biggest asset, its people.
"Our healthy tourism industry is one of the key influencers for San Antonio's success. That's why an innovative campaign that connects our local community with potential visitors is so important and so exciting," said City Manager Sheryl Sculley. "The 'Deep in the heart' brand has been an amazing foundation for sharing San Antonio. 'Remember the...' builds upon this with residents and visitors' experiences and an aggressive social media approach will only help to elevate San Antonio as a leading tourism destination."
The campaign was developed over the past six months by the San Antonio Convention & Visitors Bureau and its agency, Proof Advertising. It was based on insights from consumer research fielded in Texas and in key feeder markets.
"While San Antonio enjoys a very positive image both domestically and abroad, we learned that many do not have an understanding of the depth and breadth of what someone can do here. This campaign addresses that barrier head on," said Convention & Visitors Bureau Executive Director, Casandra Matej. "For 175 years, 'Remember the Alamo' has been a battle cry for San Antonio and Texas at large. The new 'Remember the...' campaign takes that phrase and layers new meaning on top of it, adding dimension to how people perceive us as a travel destination." Matej believes this campaign will not only answer travelers' questions and attract visitors globally, but will also inspire more San Antonians to invest locally by taking "staycations".
Starting today, locals and visitors can share photos and commentary of their favorite San Antonio experiences via Facebook at www.facebook.com/visitsanantonio. Local winners for staycation packages and other prizes will be randomly chosen from entries. Themed contests and sweepstakes will continue to launch throughout the year and will focus on key tourism categories such as cuisine, history, arts and culture, family fun and outdoor activities.