Edelman taps Chicago vet to spearhead tourism arm

CHICAGO: Edelman has launched a national tourism practice and tapped SVP Jill Collins to lead it.

CHICAGO: Edelman has launched a national tourism practice and tapped SVP Jill Collins to lead it.

CHICAGO: Edelman has launched a national tourism practice and

tapped SVP Jill Collins to lead it.



During her 15-year agency tenure, Collins has served as the de facto

tourism specialist in the firm’s Chicago office, working with such

clients as Microsoft’s Expedia.com web site, Virgin Atlantic Airways,

Budget Rent-a-Car and the Illinois Bureau of Tourism. Edelman already

realizes about dollars 2 million a year in tourism-related income out of

the Chicago office and about dollars 5.1 million worldwide.



Collins’ success in bringing in tourism PR business provided the perfect

base for an international practice, according to Steve Singerman, EVP

and GM of Edelman’s Chicago consumer unit. ’We’ll go out and merchandise

the success that Jill has had,’ he predicted. He added that he expects

to expand the practice into other Edelman offices around the world.



Collins has about 15 people working with her in Chicago and anticipates

more hires in the future, especially given the current surge in online

travel sites. The further advance of travel sites aimed at specific

ethnic or lifestyle groups also presents the new group with an

opportunity to cross-market its services with other Edelman

practices.



’There’s so much need out there in the marketplace,’ she said, pointing

to a range of potential activities including everything from traditional

media relations to Internet site launches. ’It’s a rich market full of

untapped potential.’



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