LONDON, Nov. 8, 2011 /CNW/ - Southwest Ontario Tourism Corporation
(SWOTC) has selected London-based firm Surge Communications as its
advertising agency-of-record following a review that began this past
Surge was one of six agencies competing for the marketing account and
received the nod from SWOTC in September.
According to Mary-Ellen Willard, Vice President of Client Growth and Strategy at Surge, the agency was chosen because of its breadth of integrated
marketing services, as well as its senior level experience in the
travel sector. Willard has an extensive background working in the
tourism industry, especially in the southwest Ontario region. Her
experience includes positions as Manager of Membership Services and
Communications at the Windsor Convention & Visitors Bureau and Director
of Tourism for the Cambridge Chamber of Commerce/Cambridge Tourism,
where she drove partnership sales and developed marketing initiatives
for both cities.
Social Media Will Play An Important Marketing Role
Mark Brown, Vice President of Interactive and Client Solutions at Surge, and founder of three Internet start-up companies, points out
that social media will play a major role in SWOTC's new marketing
initiatives. "With 84 per cent of online travelers saying that social
networking impacts their method of travel, it's obvious that our
responsibility will be to capitalize on this trend."
As SWOTC Board Chair Lori Da Silva says, "SWOTC's mandate is to champion
and promote tourism as a vital economic driver for Southwest Ontario,
working collaboratively with all in the region and investing wisely."
Engaging all in the tourism industry with a consistent brand strategy
is familiar marketing territory for Surge, whose clients include
Western Fair District, Maple Leaf Foodservice and The Mufflerman.
"The southwest region is somewhat unique in that the organization
represents nine distinct areas," says Willard. "Our challenge will be
to remove the geographical boundaries for customers so that they see
the region as one destination with a multitude of attractions
throughout the region."
Surge's work will get underway this fall, but the agency's full impact
won't be demonstrated until the spring when a major campaign will be
SOURCE Southwest Ontario Tourism Corporation (SWOTC)
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