Closer to Home: Tourism Agencies Adjust Their Marketing in the Face of Rising Fuel Prices | Featured story
BATAVIA – With the sudden and drastic rise in gas prices, tourism marketing is being adjusted in some GLOW counties.
“We’re definitely going to reduce our marketing until (the increase) comes down a bit because people are definitely going to be taking shorter trips closer to home,” said Kelly Rapone, tourism marketing manager for Genesee County. Tourism.
Rapone said the agency continues to make adjustments daily — this time due to world events, not the pandemic.
Genesee County Tourism is participating in five county digital marketing with Allegany County and the rest of the GLOW region. They’ve run digital ads in border states, but they’ll be focusing a bit closer to home.
Rapone said they would focus on Canada’s Golden Horseshoe – as the region around western Lake Ontario is called – and a two- to three-hour drive into New York State.
“In two weeks, we may be able to reopen this backup,” she said. “It doesn’t make much sense to spend money in overseas markets right now when people are most likely planning at this time to stay closer to home.”
Rapone said Genesee County is primarily a drive-in destination and the cost of fuel means people can’t spend as much on other things. Rapone said they haven’t seen gas prices rise above $4 in a very long time, but this is another example of the impact of political and international issues on how the travel industry must adapt and reset.
Planning for the Wyoming County Chamber of Commerce and Tourism is already set for most of 2022, but the agency continues to monitor developments and will adjust as necessary.
“Some of these events are happening quite quickly,” Chairman Scott Gardner said. “We’re hearing it’s going to be over two months before there’s any hopeful correction. Much of our program is in place for the year, but we went through that a few years ago when prices soared.
There has also been a focus on “stay-cations” and “quasi-cations” during the COVID-19 pandemic, he said. People remained closer to humans during this period.
“As people move around, we encourage this concept of ‘stay-cation’ – that there’s a lot to see and do in the area where you live, and maybe you haven’t been locally recently. “, said Gardner.
The Chamber of Commerce and Tourism will carry out closer and regional marketing within approximately 250 miles.
“We are aware of the impact of (higher gas prices) and understand that people can change their habits somewhat,” Gardner said. “…We’re flexible in what we do and how we reach people, and I think we can work to incorporate that into our existing marketing program as well.”
Includes reporting by editor Matt Surtel