KINGSTON, JAMAICA: The Jamaica Tourist Board has rehired incumbent Finn Partners as AOR for the US, Canada, and Latin America, following a competitive review.
Since coming on board in 2003, Finn Partners, which spun off from Ruder Finn at the end of 2011 and retained the Jamaica account, has pitched for and won the business three times, said John Lynch, director of tourism for the board. The new contract is for five-years, the longest one yet, he added, and it has a seven-figure budget.
More than 20 agencies bid during the “exhaustive” review process, said Lynch, but only three firms made it to the final round.
Finn was selected again because of its extensive knowledge and understanding of Jamaica, he explained.
“They are a real asset to us, and we are very happy with them and the team leader, Gail Moaney,” said Lynch.
One of the tourist board's main goals over the next five years is to increase the number of visitors from 3.5 million a year to 4 million.
Moaney, managing partner and director of travel and economic development at Finn Partners, said the agency has focused on what makes Jamaica stand apart from other Caribbean destinations, such as cuisine, fine arts, and sports. Going forward, the firm will work to make more personal connections with consumers through storytelling.
“The trend in travel is that it has become very experiential,” she explained. “So it's taking it, digging a little deeper, and plowing into those things that are very special to the traveler.”
Moaney said the team of 13 staffers on the account will work to engage travelers, media, and influencers with specific stories and experiences, such as those of women golfers in Jamaica.
In addition to engaging a wide range of media, from culinary and travel to lifestyle and sports, Finn Partners is working with the board's in-house digital team on some initiatives, as well as reaching out to bloggers.
Moaney said a group of mom bloggers will travel to Jamaica next week to experience the island as a destination for family travel.
The firm also works with the Jamaica Tourist Board on events in North America, Latin America, and Jamaica, as well as strategic partnerships for promotions. Its goal is to create buzz and raise awareness about what the island has to offer, she explained.