Visit Florida seeks firms to reach diverse audiences

TALLAHASSEE, FL: Visit Florida is looking for communications agencies that can help it reach out to black and Hispanic consumers.

TALLAHASSEE, FL: Visit Florida is looking for communications agencies that can help it reach out to black and Hispanic consumers.

The state tourism group has released two invitations to negotiate, each soliciting work targeting a specific ethnic demographic. Both are one-year contracts with $100,000 budgets and April 23 deadlines for response. The winning firms will be tasked with creating PR, digital, and advertising strategies.

Visit Florida wants to hire all agencies by the start of its fiscal year in July, Torian said. It hired Ketchum as its PR AOR in January and recently selected SapientNitro as its digital AOR.

Black consumers make up approximately 14% of the total US market and represent about 9% of total trips in the US, said Kathy Torian, corporate communications manager at Visit Florida. Black consumers visit the state with an average travel-party size of 2.4 people and spend $133 each day over the course of their visits, which last just under five nights on average.

Hispanic-Americans make up about 15% of the total US market, and represent about 10% of total trips. Hispanic visitors to the state travel on average in parties of 2.6 people and spend $143 each day visiting Florida. Their average trip to the state is also just under five days.

Both contracts require the winning firms to develop a research-based strategic plan to effectively segment and target these audiences. They must also develop creative materials that will improve the impact of Visit Florida's PR efforts.

The firms will also be required to develop an effective media plan to reach these demographics and advise Visit Florida's in-house editorial staff on events and story concepts. The contracts also include traditional and non-traditional media outreach and event planning.

The Hispanic invitation to negotiate is largely identical to the African-American one, however a key difference is that the winning firm must produce or translate press releases into Spanish.

Hester Group is the incumbent for the outreach to black consumers, and the Rodriguez Group helps Visit Florida target domestic Hispanic audiences.

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