Travel and tourism specialist KBC PR & Marketing is to implement a UK programme of activity for Explore Minnesota Tourism after the state announced RMI as its first agency of record for international marketing and market development.
The strategic partnership comes after Explore Minnesota Tourism suspended most international marketing in 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic. As international leisure travel rebounds, the partnership will promote travel to Minnesota from the United Kingdom and four other markets. KBC is RMI’s retained in-market representative for the UK, having worked with the Wyoming-based agency for more than 10 years.
Through KBC, RMI will provide UK in-market representation, prioritising consumer-facing marketing activities and a strategic research project that incorporates RMI’s proprietary TRIP Report methodology. TRIP Reports provide baseline data on travel packages and resulting number of travellers from each market.
“This agreement marks the first time in the state’s destination marketing history that we have retained an agency of record for international marketing and market development,” said Lauren Bennett McGinty, executive director of Explore Minnesota Tourism. “The decision to work with RMI and their affiliated partners is an important strategic move made on behalf of Minnesota’s tourism industry and the state’s visitor economy. By investing in targeted marketing programmes and in-country representation in key overseas markets, we are able to expedite the return of international travel to our destination and set a course for future growth for this critical statewide industry.”
This partnership comes at an advantageous time for the state of Minnesota as the travel industry continues to rebound post-COVID-19 pandemic and consumer booking demand to the U.S. grows rapidly. Visitor arrivals to the U.S. from Western Europe in 2022 were up 1,306% from 2021, and only down 39% from pre-pandemic levels in 2019, according to the National Travel and Tourism Office.
The tourism industry remains a strong economic driver for the state of Minnesota, generating revenue, creating jobs and contributing to community vitality for its residents. The partnership with RMI is part of Explore Minnesota’s larger initiative to re-enter target international markets and resume marketing initiatives to identify the organisation’s best opportunities for continued growth.
“There’s a real opportunity for Minnesota to capitalise on its natural travel experiences to promote year-round travel,” said Mathias Jung, CEO and Owner at RMI. “International travellers typically stay longer in a destination and spend more money than domestic travellers. We look forward to building a targeted international programme together and helping to grow the state’s visitor economy.”
RMI was named Explore Minnesota’s official international marketing agency as of February 1, 2023. For more information, visit ExploreMinnesota.com or RMIMarketing.com.
About RMI: RMI is a destination marketing company founded in 1990 offering a multitude of services to businesses throughout the travel industry, domestic and international, with a special focus on middle America and the American West. Through its work, RMI will significantly contribute to job creation, tax revenues and increased quality of life in the communities we live and serve. RMI is based in Cheyenne, Wyoming with international offices in seven overseas markets. To learn more, visit RMIMarketing.com.
About Explore Minnesota Tourism: Explore Minnesota is the statewide tourism promotion agency for the state of Minnesota. Tourism is a key sector of Minnesota’s economy, annually generating $16.6 billion in leisure and hospitality sales and employing nearly 275,000 workers. Explore Minnesota promotes sustainable travel by welcoming all to experience our diverse cultures and destinations through innovative marketing, industry partnerships and unique storytelling. Visit exploreminnesota.com or find us @exploreminn on Twitter and @exploreminnesota on Instagram, Facebook and TikTok.