Massachusetts re-signs Connelly for tourism

BOSTON: The Massachusetts Office of Travel and Tourism has renewed its contract with Connelly Partners to promote the state, according to a state tourism representative.

BOSTON: The Massachusetts Office of Travel and Tourism has renewed its contract with Connelly Partners to promote the state, according to a state tourism representative.

The one-year contract is worth up to $5 million with the option for three renewals, according to the RFP. The state sought “a contractor that will significantly increase the volume and economic impact of visitors to Massachusetts,” according to the agency search document.

Connelly Partners is tasked with developing an annual PR plan, as well as creating and managing media relations programs directed at travel-related traditional and online media.

The firm must also develop an annual destination marketing plan, which will include an analysis of economic conditions, competitive environment, and recommendations on target markets and audiences. The work must also incorporate messaging, advertising, and marketing communications strategies, as well as tactics, budget, and campaign timing, according to the RFP.

Connelly Partners first began working with the state on the account in 2008. The number of total domestic trips to Massachusetts has risen from less than 15 million in fiscal year 2008 to 17.3 million in FY 2011, according to state data.

“[The state tourism agency] is both a cornerstone brand and an incentive catalyst for Connelly Partners," said Steve Connelly, president and chief creative officer at the eponymous firm, via email. “The business of tourism and the best ways to connect with people are changing at light speed, and we are excited and proud that [the state organization] trusted us to keep them ahead of that change.”

Alaska re-upped with its long-time incumbent Thompson & Co. in May.  

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