Remember the Four Ps of Marketing? Product – Price – Placement and Promotion. It’s the Marketing 101. Last time I shared how it’s the core of what we do – destination development (Product), drive hotel rates (Price), advise on the location of the attractions (Placement), and of course advertising and media relations (Promotion.) But the longer I spend in destination marketing, the more I realize there is indeed a fifth P of marketing. That fifth P is Politics.
I once read that destination marketing professionals are “politicians with marketing skills”. And while I don’t like to consider myself a politician, I recognize more and more frequently that we do a lot of politic-ing. Consider that…
– The CVB was active in recent City Council elections. We assisted with candidate profiles and submitted questions for the candidate forums.
– Recently we’ve monitored City issues related to business lighting and storm water runoff. Further back, we took a stance on a state education issue and supported both a parks master plan and funding for a business park.
– I accompanied our Chamber of Commerce on a ‘fly-in’ to DC to meet with our five representatives and Senators. (We also met with NOAA as weather is big business in Norman!)
– In the near future we’ll discuss raising the transient guest tax and the split of that tax to maximize it’s economic impact on the local economy.
US Travel Association has long recognized the fifth P of destination marketing. DMAI is engaging more and more in advocacy. A committee is developing a tool kit for a community to utilize. Not soon enough as we spend less and less time on the Promotion side of our jobs and more time on the Politics of our job.