In 2019, Virginia Tourism Corporation (VTC) will be working on a long-term strategic plan to help increase tourism visitation and spending across the Commonwealth. This plan is titled “Drive 2.0,” and will build on the existing findings and conclusions from the 2013 Statewide Tourism Plan.
This plan will be a conversation and an opportunity for VTC to learn from Virginia’s tourism industry. The new strategic plan will have a strong focus on growing Virginia’s tourism economy as we look to the future by answering two key questions:
- What should we be promoting?
- What should we be building?
The tourism industry is an overly-saturated and extremely competitive market. And while travelers spend $68 million per day in Virginia—that’s $2.8 million an hour, this isn’t a dedicated source of funds. We have to fight for and win travelers for these monies.
In order to succeed and thrive, Virginia communities must continue to develop new product and focus on winning strategies to evolve and grow. When we increase tourism development we increase the visitor experience, economic impact to communities and our marketing competitiveness. Drive 2.0 will help us do just that.
After a competitive review process, we have selected Southeastern Institute of Research, Inc. (SIR) to conduct the research and develop the strategic plan. Over the next 12 months, SIR will be surveying more than 1,500 industry partners, and will be conducting interviews with stakeholders in every region throughout the state. Working in concert with the team at VTC, SIR will help identify opportunities and challenges, as well as assess the competition. Upon completion, SIR will deliver a comprehensive strategy that will be tailored to the individual needs of communities across the Commonwealth, with the goal of increasing visitation and revenue.
This strategic plan will be a result of our conversations with Virginia’s tourism industry and our tourism partners as we look to the future and plan for success.