Wednesday TDC Meeting – Spring Break Marketing Update

Notes from Wednesday’s TDC meeting:

Artificial Reef
A presentation seeking financial assistance to sink a boat that is currently at the PC Marina was added to the agenda. The gentleman was seeking $40,000 to assist with the total $75,000 cost. There was some concern whether there were funds available in the current year budget; however, a motion passed 9-0 recommending that the CVB board approve the $40,000 expenditure.

Indian Summer Festival Contract
A motion made by Jack Bishop passed 8-0(with Joe Kennedy abstaining) recommending that the CVB board exercise its option to cancel the final year of the 3 year contract with Sound Associates/Ron Johnson to put on the Indiana Summer Festival. Some members felt that the CVB should not continue to fund events that have shown an inability to become self-sustaining. Some felt that the event is primarily a local event, rather than a tourist draw, and was therefore an inappropriate use of CVB funds. And finally some were of the belief that continuing the festival was important, but that Sound Associates did a poor job of putting on this years festival.

Special Events Policy
A motion passed 9-0 recommending that the CVB board reaffirm the “January
2003 Special Events Advertising Policy and Procedure” be followed for all future special event funding requests. Although this policy has never been revoked or modified, recent boards(including the current board and committee with the 2007-08 budget) have not followed it.

Update on The Klages Group Research
The committee briefly discussed the final draft of the Klages Group survey form which was included in the committee packet. Visitor inquiry data and mapping prepared by Klages was also distributed.

2008 Spring Break Co-Op
Barry Lott of Y Partnership updated the committee on the plans for Spring Break 2008. He explained that although the contract with MTV has not yet been finalized, the plan is to begin implementing the advertising elements by mid-November. Lott presented the agencies current co-op plans:

Hotel Partner Options
Premium $10,000 (only 4 available; includes featured coverage on the PCB Spring Break subsite and 1M impressions on the mtvU site, additional impressions available @ $7500 per 1M) Promotional $2500 (limited number available; includes extensive PCB Spring Break subsite coverage, but no coverage on the mtvU site) Unlimited $1000 (listing on the PCB Spring Break subsite and event calendar)

Non-Hotel Partner Options
Premium $5,000 (logo on mtvU site)
Unlimited $1000 (listing on PCB Spring Break subsite) Event $500 (listing on subsite event calendar)

Ann Henry expressed her concern that the co-op plan resulted in a disproportionate contribution from the Hotel Partners in comparison to the Non-Hotel Partners. Chairman Phillips was in the audience and responded that some changes will be made before being finalized.

Lott also advised the committee that an additional expense of $18-20,000 to design and operate the co-op web subsite will be required in addition to the $200,000 payment to MTV. The subsite will be required because Hotel logos can not appear on the mtvU site except in the form of banner advertising using the 10M impressions in the contract. Bill Spann stated that all required expenses should have been included in the budgeted amount of $200,000; however, Lott expressed his belief that the agency had previously advised the CVB that this additional expense would be required. Mr.
Phillips expressed his disappointment that the co-op now needs to reach $70,000 before reducing the CVB’s budgeted expense of $150,000.

Lott also informed the committee that MTV was currently negotiating the village location with two hotel properties. It was also announced that no non-hotel properties were being considered due to mtvU’s alcohol policy. An co-op registration meeting is scheduled for next Tuesday afternoon.

A motion was made by Bill Spann to request that the board revise the plan concerning co-op funds received in excess of $50,000. The board decided on October 9th that any co-op funds received in excess of the $50,000 budgeted amount would be used to reduce the CVB’s budgeted portion of $150,000. Mr.
Spann suggested that any excess funds could be used for additional Spring Break promotion instead. The motion was withdrawn before a vote was taken.

Jack Bishop also advised the committee that a competing co-op is being proposed to do additional marketing beyond the MTV program. Mr. Phillips expressed his opinion the industry is free to do additional marketing, but that the CVB should not get involved in any further Spring Break 2008 programs other than the current plan. Mr. Phillips also expressed his opinion that PCB has changed and that the CVB needs to get out of the Spring Break business. Russ Smith stated that he did not feel that multiple competing co-ops was a good idea.

A revised motion was made by Mr. Spann suggesting the board revise October 9th passed motion concerning the treatment of co-op funds exceeding $50,000.
The motion to suggest that the board revise the $50,000 number to $70,000 to account for the Spring Break internet subsite cost passed 7-1 with Kirk Lancaster casting the dissenting vote and Mr. Kennedy having departed early.
Prior to the vote, Mr. Smith suggested that the CVB revise its Spring Break plan to provide for $150,000 special event funding to an outside co-op which could take over the MTV program and add additional promotions. Mr. Phillips disagreed stating that the CVB needs to retain control that it would lose with an outside co-op managing the MTV program.

Meeting notes courtesy of Bryan J Durta. Thanks Bryan, for the thorough notes.

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