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WTM

BY Rob Gill

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WTM 2017: Brand USA to use music to promote destination

Brand USA is to use its musical heritage to promote the destination in 2018, including hosting the finale of its annual UK Megafam in Nashville.

Brand USA MegaFam 2017 launch

The destination marketing organisation is also producing a new film called America’s Musical Journey, which will be released in February 2018 and showcase destinations such as Nashville, New Orleans, Chicago, Detroit, New York and Miami.

 

Brand USA will take around 100 UK and Irish agents on its seventh annual educational trip from April 26 to May 4, with seven groups travelling around the country before meeting up for the finale in Nashville, which is known as Music City US.

 

Cathleen Domanico, vice president, global trade, for Brand USA, told TTG that the new film was one of the main reasons for choosing Nashville as the finale venue for the Megafam trip, as well as the introduction of new flights by British Airways from Heathrow to Nashville in May 2018.

 

“Nashville is a great music city so it seemed like the perfect fit – particularly with the America’s Musical Journey film coming out,” she added.

 

“The goal is to get them to the gateway and beyond – to go to destinations that are not necessarily on their radar as a first-time visitor. The agents can then go back to the UK and talk to clients about all the different opportunities.”

 

Brand USA has yet to announce itineraries for the trip, which will be released later this month. The trip will be run in partnership with British Airways and American Airlines.

 

America’s Musical Journey will feature singer Aloe Blacc as he tours some of the country’s most iconic music-themed destinations.

 

Tom Garzilli, chief marketing officer of Brand USA, added: “Our first film in 2016 [National Parks Adventure] was based around national parks, this time we wanted to support our urban culture by using music as the primary story.

 

“It will be shown around the world and we hope it will be as successful as the previous film.”

 

The new documentary-style film will be around 40-45 minutes long and will be shown in museums, science centres and Imax cinemas around the world.

 

Brand USA is also to create a new standalone website for the international travel trade, which will be launched in early 2018.

 

“It will be a resource centre for the trade,” said Domanico. “It will feature itineraries, destination copy and descriptions, as well as photo and video libraries, and contact information.”

 

Domanico said that Brand USA did not currently have any arrival numbers for international visitors to the destination during 2017.

 

“We don’t have any recent numbers but when we talk to tour operators, they say that business has been relatively strong,” she added.

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