Written by Douglas Edwin
Wednesday, 16 October 2013 00:00
Governor Quinn recently announced that in 2012 Illinois broke its all time record for tourism, with 101 million tourists visiting Illinois.
With a record number of tourists, also came new highs for both money and jobs generated from tourism. 2012 saw Illinois bring in an estimated 33.5 billion dollars and 298,700 jobs, according to a press release announcing the accomplishment.
“Our world-class destinations continue to attract more domestic and international visitors to Illinois each year, and this means jobs and economic growth for our state,” said Governor Quinn “These record-breaking numbers show that the economic engine of tourism in Illinois is firing on all cylinders.”
International tourists accounted for 2,082,200 tourists in 2012, which is an 11.8 percent increase from 2011. Domestic tourists accounted for 99 million of the 101 million, which is a 6.1 percent increase from the previous record.
The reason for these record numbers is due in large part to the many new ways that Illinois has used to encourage tourism, including the embracement of social media and viral marketing.
Starting in 2011 Illinois began a new tourism marketing campaign that promoted international tourism from countries such as Canada, China, Mexico, and Brazil through its Sister River and Lake Program.
Enjoy Illinois, one Illinois’ marketing campaigns, has embraced various social media sites such as Facebook, Flickr, Instagram, YouTube, Twitter, and Pinterest as a way to both interact and attract possible tourists.
Through Flickr, Instagram, and Pinterest, Enjoy Illinois is able to post and share photos that highlight different Illinois hot spots and landscapes. The websites also allows other users to link Enjoy Illinois to their photos, as a way to create a more interactive environment.
On Twitter, Enjoy Illinois is able to post different travel tips, attractions, events, and pictures of things going on in Illinois. They also repost tips or travel ideas from other users and websites about Illinois. Since the creation of its’ Twitter page Enjoy Illinois has gained over 17,000 followers and posted over 5,000 tweets.
One of the most successful aspects of Illinois’ embracement of social media has been the viral marketing campaign of Mini Abe.
Mini Abe is a small action figure of President Abraham Lincoln that can be seen throughout all of Enjoy Illinois’ social media websites. On Instagram and Flickr the pictures of “Mini Abe” in various tourist destinations have become fairly popular.
On YouTube the humorous “Mini Abe” videos have become quite popular as well. The most recent video of him in various hot spots around Illinois received over 30,000 views within a period of a little over a week.
In addition to Enjoy Illinois’ presence on other sites, it features its own impressive website as well. EnjoyIllinois.com has a great deal of events, festivals, attractions, and more to help inspire those thinking of visiting the state. The website also has teamed up with various attractions and businesses around the state in order to offer a wide variety of deals and sales only available through the website.
If you are interested in viewing any of the various social media outlets of Enjoy Illinois, links for all of them can be found at www.enjoyillinois.com
Last Updated on Tuesday, 15 October 2013 13:32