The Palisade Tourism Advisory Board at its Feb. 10 meeting voted to nearly reverse 2015 marketing expenditures from 52% print media and 23% online media in 2014.
“The tourism industry is changing,” Teri Cavanagh, Cobb & Associates marketing consultant for TAB, told the board. “The modern day tourism consumer is online.” Cavanagh proposed that print ads in 2015 would direct visitors planning to visit to Palisade websites.
The board also voted to create a subcommittee to explore ways to increase funding for TAB. At present, funding for marketing campaigns comes from a $2 per visitor lodging fee. It is collected by lodging establishments from Palisade’s overnight visitors. However, the number of establishments has declined in recent years from six to four.
Since 2010, the town has transferred additional funding to the TAB budget from the town’s general fund. In 2014, the town transferred $4,190. Expenditures for the year were $31,244.
Town Treasurer Joe Vlach told the board, “Shortfall is fine, but budgets are tight.” He asked about finding additional revenue sources.
Rich Sales, town administrator, told the board, “The (town) board is asking if we can stay within our (TAB) budget.”
2015 preliminary budget
The board voted on and approved the 2015 general budget recommended by Cavanagh, with the understanding that a more detailed budget will be presented soon.
Cavanagh reviewed 2014 marketing projects and proposed plans for 2015 marketing campaigns. Proposals include upgrading the website, www.palisadetourism.com. Marketing slogans in 2014 included, “Palisade is always in season.”
Cavanagh proposed that Stan Stephens, new TAB member, be paid for digital marketing monitoring. Stephens said he would be glad to do it, but he was concerned about a possible conflict of interest. Town Administrator Sales pointed out that Stephens could recuse himself from voting where there might be a conflict.
Cavanagh proposed potential ways to increase TAB revenue. One approach would be to add $2 a ticket for the Bluegrass, Peach, Wine festivals. Town Administrator Sales suggested, instead, earmarking 8, 9, or 10 % of festival revenue for the TAB budget.
Angel Goodman, business owner in Palisade, was introduced as a new member of the board. The meeting was held at the Palisade Civic Center.
The next TAB meeting is scheduled for Tuesday March 10, noon, at the Civic Center. Agendas are posted on the town website. Meetings are open to the public.