Brand USA has insisted that investment in the UK will not suffer as a result of an ongoing drive to attract more visitors from high-potential emerging markets such as China, India and Brazil.
David Whitaker, the central marketing organisation’s new chief marketing officer, said: “I firmly believe you have to stay committed to a market in order to reap the benefits of any activity, and you can’t take any market for granted.
“The rise and relatively low cost of social media removes some of the shackles and allows you to get into markets (that previously would have been deemed too expensive), but the UK remains a major market for us, with significant developments in airlift and visitors who stay and explore different areas of our country.”
Speaking at the IPW conference in Orlando, Whitaker told Travel Weekly that the travel trade would remain core to marketing activity.
“We need to make sure we activate programmes that engage the travel agent community and ensure there is not a sense of ‘brand fatigue’ for them and their customers,” he said.
“The success of the annual MegaFam demonstrates the value of this engagement, particularly as it allows us to showcase less high-profile destinations.”
Whitaker said it was important to reach a broad range of customers, stressing that the US had a product and price point for all tastes and budgets.
But he added: “Any smart marketer with a consumer brand is looking at younger customers and those that used to be called baby boomers who are over 50.
“These are audiences that are looking to travel in a different way and there is great opportunity for the USA as a destination to appeal to them.”
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