The campaign will include the UK, a major market for US tourism, in the first wave of advertising, which launches on 1 May and has a budget of $12.3 million (£7.63m) for the first three months with $3.9m (£2.4m) devoted to the UK. Visitor numbers from the UK stayed flat year on year for 2011 on 2010.
Other territories in the first phase include Japan and Canada, with a second wave following in Brazil and South Korea, with several other markets to follow.
The campaign, the first nationally coordinated tourism marketing effort from the US, showcases the variety of experiences available in the United States and has the strapline “Discover this land, like never before”. At the heart of the campaign is an originally composed song sung by Roseanne Cash, daughter of the late country singer Johnny Cash, called “Land of Dreams”.
The launch ads feature Cash playing the song under New York’s Brooklyn Bridge, accompanied by musicians from around the world. As part of its campaign, Brand USA will extend invitations to musical artists from around the world to come to perform their music in their favorite U.S. cities and towns, profiling their trips and favourite things about the USA online and via social media.
Brand USA CEO Jim Evans says: “”Our goal is nothing short of rekindling the world’s love affair with the USA – the place, the spirit and the dream.”
The country is in fierce competition for the tourist pound, with destinations such as Australia and Brazil also ramping up activity this year. This is alongside strong marketing from Visit England to persuade people to take domestic holidays this year, attracted by the excitement of the Diamond Jubilee and The London Olympics. In 2011 there were 3.83 million visitors to the US from the UK.
Stephen J. Cloobeck, chairman of Brand USA’s Board, says: “Other countries around the world have prioritised tourism efforts for years, yet in the 236 years since the United States of America was founded, this country has never had a nationally coordinated effort dedicated to inviting travellers to come visit us.”
Brand USA has created the campaign with JWT and the TV ads will be accompanied by outdoor, print and digital activity. Facebook, Twitter and YouTube pages will showcase country-specific promotions and engagements and a newly relaunched website will act as a visitors’ information portal for trip planning.
The website features 250 inspiring travel ideas, highlights of U.S. destinations, plus essential information travelers need to know, as well as real life stories from brand ambassadors.
Brand USA was created as a result of federal legislation passed in March 2010, which established a public-private partnership between the travel industry and the U.S.