What is the goal of this project?
The primary objective of the project is to inspire prospective high-end wine consumers to choose Oregon as a premier wine destination, which will drive traffic to winery tasting rooms throughout the state and boost overall tourist spending in Oregon. The second objective is to educate consumers about the distinct virtues of the diverse wine tourism regions throughout the state, thereby encouraging longer stays and evangelism of Oregon wine upon returning home. The guide will expose visitors to regions they may not have previously considered visiting, inspire return visits and bring consumers to less traveled areas of Oregon wine country.
Why is OWB undertaking this project?
A statewide tourism guide addresses multiple strategic imperatives outlined in the OWB’s board-approved strategic plan (“champion Brand Oregon” and “support strategic expansion through DTC”). Additionally, it aligns with input OWB received from the industry survey that “wine tourism initiatives such as tourism guides, maps, etc.” is one of the most important activities for the OWB to undertake in achieving its strategic imperatives.
Furthermore, OWB receives frequent calls from consumers requesting this kind of travel planning resource. Research shared by our partner Travel Oregon suggests that there is value in printed guides. In fact, Travel Oregon gets more than 6,000 direct requests for wine and culinary information through their channels each year, and this guide will help to satisfy the desire for in depth information on our wine regions.
How is the guide being produced?
OWB conducted a competitive bid process to find a publishing partner with experience in touring guides that could produce a high-quality guide for a reasonable cost. SagaCity Media, producer of Travel Portland and Washington State Wine’s guides, as well as highly-esteemed consumer publications like Portland Monthly and Seattle Met, was selected as OWB’s preferred contractor.
SagaCity’s role is three-fold:
- To create and produce the guide, complete with original, researched editorial, rich photography and robust tourism resources.
- To execute the sales of advertising space within the guide, including setting rates and managing contracts.
- To manage distribution and fulfillment of the guide once it is produced.
How many copies of the guide will be printed?
There will be 50,000 printed copies produced in 2016.
When will the guide be available?
The guide will be in distribution in April 2016.
How is it funded? Is it pay-to-play?
The guide is funded in large part through an Oregon Wine Country License Plate grant.
The other source of funding is advertising. SagaCity Media has drawn on its expertise in producing advertiser-supported publications to set ad rates in such a way that advertising should be affordable to any business that chooses to participate. As with all paid advertising opportunities, wineries are encouraged to negotiate a price that works within their budget.
Where do the advertising revenues go?
The advertising revenues go to support the production and distribution of the guide. The guide economics are managed by the publisher, which sets ad rates to create a financially viable project. OWB does not receive any of the advertising revenue.
How will the guide be distributed?
The guide will have several points of distribution (with approximate allocation):
- 55% – Distributed to targeted hotels and tourism centers in Oregon and Washington (distribution at Travel Oregon-run welcome centers is complimentary)
- 23% – Allocated to wineries that are interested in receiving the guide (more to come in January)
- 20% – Directly shipped to tourists who request the guide from the OWB or partner websites
- 3% – Handed out at trade and consumer events, locally and globally
- Available digitally on oregonwine.org and traveloregon.com
How does the distribution plan help to meet the primary project objective (inspire Oregon wine country visits)?
It is expected that guides distributed in Oregon will serve to inspire:
- An extended stay or repeat visit to a wine region
- The decision to add a wine country visit to an itinerary (e.g. a day trip from Portland)
- Subsequent visits to different Oregon wine regions
We know that visitors to Oregon wine country often return home as evangelists. This guide gives people the opportunity to pass along a source of inspiration and information to their friends and family.
In addition, guides will be distributed in Washington state, bringing more visitors from that important tourism market to Oregon wine country.
The OWB also plans to execute a targeted digital marketing campaign aimed at prospective wine country visitors in key markets around the country, who will be encouraged to either view the guide online or request a copy be mailed to them.
How will success be measured?
- Track the requests for physical guides and views / downloads of the digital version on oregonwine.org and traveloregon.com
- Conduct follow up survey with recipients of directly distributed guides about quality of guide and any travel-planning actions taken
- Poll the industry in the OWB’s annual industry survey to collect anecdotal evidence of success directly from Oregon wineries
How is this different from past OWB-produced guides?
- The OWB has not produced a piece of printed tourism collateral since 2007 and it was essentially a simple directory of wineries. Production of these earlier guides was discontinued for a combination of reasons, including the difficulty of getting accurate and timely listing information for tasting rooms and the costly and cumbersome nature of distribution by the OWB staff.
- Based on industry input about the changing nature of direct-to-consumer programs and the opportunity to procure grant funds to support tourism efforts, OWB has taken the step to learn from past guidebook efforts and will publish a newly imagined guide in 2016. The new guide will serve a source of inspiration to potential visitors, with unique editorial content and profiles that paint a vibrant picture of each of the state’s major wine tourism regions. It is not only intended to serve as reference for people already touring, but as a marketing piece to entice potential visitors to our wine regions.
- Additionally, the guide will be available for online viewing, expanding the reach and accessibility of the content.