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South Shore unveils new slogan

Matt Welch
mwelch@tahoedailytribune.com
Kontent Films/ Provided to the TribuneThe Lake Tahoe Visitors Authority unveiled its summer 2010 marketing campaign "Get your vacation on" at a tourism forum Thursday. It focuses on what executive director Carol Chaplin calls "passion buckets" - recreation activities that many in the basin feel strongly about.
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SOUTH LAKE TAHOE, Calif. – Local tourism leaders are urging Bay Area residents to get their vacation on this summer – and they’re betting $850,000 dollars that the plan works.

The Lake Tahoe Visitors Authority unveiled its summer 2010 marketing campaign called “Get your vacation on” and gave some business leaders a sneak preview of a new version of its new website (www.tahoesouth.com) this week at a tourism forum. The forum, co-hosted by the LTVA and the Lake Tahoe South Shore Chamber of Commerce, was held Thursday morning at the Duke Theatre on the campus of Lake Tahoe Community College.

The new campaign focuses on what LTVA executive director Carol Chaplin calls “passion buckets” – recreation activities that many in the basin feel strongly about – and could help position South Shore as a vibrant, energetic and active destination. The approach will be different from the former “Blue” marketing campaign and the matching BlueLakeTahoe.com website, which Chaplin said marketed Tahoe as serene instead of vibrant.

“We are really positioning ourselves in the marketplace as fun and vibrant,” she said during the forum. “We’re focusing a bit more on the active lifestyle.”

San Francisco-based Duncan/Channon Agency created the campaign after becoming LTVA’s agency of record last year after an open request for proposal that included nine firms from the Reno, Sacramento and San Francisco areas, Chaplin said.

About $150,000 of the budget was spent on creative and production costs, while nearly $700,000 was spent on media buys, Chaplin said in a phone interview.

The campaign, which will run from May 15 until Labor Day, is aimed at drive market customers in the Bay Area and Sacramento and is meant to differentiate South Shore from North Shore, said account manager Jennifer Corrigan of Duncan/Channon. Many guests from those areas know Tahoe and can differentiate between the North and South Shores, she said.

“We want to keep South Shore top-of-mind for these people,” said Laura Davis of Duncan/Channon.

The humor of the ad is meant to get the attention of the viewers, Chaplin said, and she’s pleased with the results.

“I think it really captures the destination’s personality, if you will,” she said.

LTCC student Mikhail Strukov, who attended the forum, said he thought the reimagining of the marketing strategy seemed like the right way to go.

“I like this new concept, that they’re moving away from the Tahoe Blue thing and starting this niche marketing,” Strukov said. “I think this change is going to be beneficial for marketing.”

Dennis Oliver, a spokesman for the Tahoe Regional Planning Agency who attended the forum, said the TRPA is interested in tourism in Tahoe because it brings money to the basin that can be used for environmental efforts. Shifts in marketing to include many outdoor activities and less emphasis on gaming are good, he said, because gaming visitors are abandoning Tahoe as a destination.

“That kind of thinking will help us shift so we have an economy here,” Oliver said.


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