South Dakota Office of Tourism - sitemap

Monthly Reports: January 2002

January 2002

MEMORANDUM TO: William J. Janklow

DATE: February 8, 2002

FROM: Patricia Van Gerpen

SUBJECT: Tourism’s January Monthly Status Report

You may download and print the entire January report in Adobe Acrobat (PDF).


Governor's Conference on Tourism
Rural Tourism Development
Public Relations
Group Tour
Film Office
Information Centers
Travel Shows
Lewis and Clark Promotions
Native American Tourism
World Wide Web
Target Market Advertising
Winter Campaign
Great Events
Department Funding


Completed committee assignments and handled other details during the conference. Drafted letters to speakers and emcees, conducted wrap-up meeting, compiled evaluation comments, and discussed theme and session topics for the 2003 conference. The Ben Black Elk award was given to Dan Wenk, past superintendent of Mount Rushmore National Memorial, A.H. Pankow award was given to Aberdeen American News, and the George S. Mickelson Great Service Award was given to Full House, Inc. of Deadwood.

The number of full conference registrations was 456, which topped 2001, but was just shy of the all-time high of 460 in 2000. The Thursday luncheon count was slightly higher than last year, as was the banquet count.

Added the 2002 Annual Report and the new research reports to Tourismís web site.

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Confirmed speakers for the Farm and Ranch Vacation Workshop scheduled for February 14 and 15, which will be broadcast over Dakota Digital Network (DDN) sites in Mitchell, Pierre, Spearfish, Watertown, Aberdeen, Rapid City, and Sioux Falls. Speakers are from the state Departments of Agriculture, Health, Insurance, Tourism, and Revenue; South Dakota Small Business Development Corporation; Hand Boy Creek Ranch; and Prairie Sky Guest Ranch. Registration materials were sent via mail and information is posted on Will distribute an updated Farm and Ranch Vacation Resource Directory to registrants and by request.

Fulfilled requests for Tourism Assistance Directory.

Presented information on Departmentís promotions to attendees of the Bed and Breakfast Innkeepers of South Dakota Conference, held in Pierre.

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Participated in conference call with tourism representatives from Wyoming regarding the Chicago and Minneapolis media blitzes scheduled in March. Contacted two industry representatives and relayed plans to them. Reviewed the Minneapolis location/reception and invitation list that this office is coordinating for the group. Created html e-mail invitation to send to editors, writers, and publishers in the Minneapolis market to attend media reception on March 21.

Fulfilled media requests from Ladies Home Journal, Sioux Falls Argus Leader, Capital Journal, Larkspur Books, Ad-Fax Media, and Motorcycle Travel America.

Removed special feature from homepage, and created a special feature archives on site map and linked to

Set up interview on KSFY-TVís "Good Morning Dakota" with Dr. James Ronda, who is also the speaker for the February 6 Lewis and Clark statewide meeting in Sioux Falls.

Hosted Midwest Living Editor-in-Chief Dan Kaercher on a tour of the State Capitol and Cultural Heritage Center during his attendance at the Tourism Conference.

Press hits with circulation and estimated ad equivalence include: Aberdeen American News (18,000) 10 articles for ad equivalence of $3,883; Sioux Falls Argus Leader (73,167) four articles for ad equivalence of $1,686; Rapid City Journal (35,465) three articles for ad equivalence of $1,857; KNBN web site (circulation unavailable) one article for ad equivalence of $100; Capital Journal (4,864) three articles for ad equivalence of $285; and Midwest Living (825,278) for ad equivalence of $107,940. Total value is $115,751.

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Reviewed, the new group tour web site.

Completed follow-up from National Tour Association conference to 117 tour companies. Shared attendee list and appointment names with the 19 South Dakota American Bus Association members who will attend Marketplace in February.

Completed follow-up to 63 tour companies Ė requests from the Group Tour Co-op mailing.

Sent travel information to 201 group travel leaders from Bank Travel Management.

Drafted Spring Group Tour fam itinerary, contacted suppliers for hosting arrangements, and sent itinerary to group tour magazines for inclusion in their spring issues.

Sent requested information to Maupintour and S&S Tours, Kansas; Dorman Herman, Texas; World Wide Christian Tours, Kentucky; Anderson Coach & Travel, Pennsylvania; George Ricker, Alabama; Kaleo Tours, Oklahoma; Letís Travel Again, Maine; Joy Tour & Travel, Ohio; Something Special and Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York; Educational Tours, Illinois; Travel Easy and Farmington Middle School, Minnesota; Pathway Tours, Ontario; AmericanTours, Italy; L Express, France; Tur-Alternativo, Argentina; and journalist Gerda Sorenson, Denmark.

Sent World Travel Market tradeshow leads to 642 South Dakota suppliers requesting international tour operator and press leads.

Completed follow-up to 49 leads from the World Travel Market Show in London, which the Rocky Mountain International states attended.

Worked on itineraries for a signature tour, heritage tour, and wildlife/nature tour for the 2Nation Vacation project. Contacted the South Dakota Governorís Office of Economic Development for technical tour and agriculture tour information.

Cancelled winter fam for international press due to lack of snow

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Contacted travel show co-op partners to obtain items that will be given to attendees of the AAA seminars held in conjunction with travel show attendance. Conducted AAA seminars in Colorado Springs and Denver for 19 travel counselors who represent a membership of approximately 500,000. Will conduct seminars in Harrisburg in February.

Fulfilled requests from AAA offices and independent travel agencies from Connecticut, Iowa, Ohio, and Nebraska.

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Completed follow-up to a group from Filson, who were hosted in December.

Interviewed applicants for the vacant media relations position, which includes managing outdoor promotions.

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Continued to update listings for the 2002-2003 Film Office Production Guide.

Sent Production Guide packets to film studios in Nevada, California, Georgia, New York, Quebec, and British Columbia.

Reviewed script from a production company and sent photo files of possible locations of the Missouri River, open prairie, and Old West towns.

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Wrote a grant proposal for the Lewis and Clark Information Center, Chamberlain. Proposal includes plans for exterior interpretative panels, extended hours of operation, outdoor advertising leasing, and training Lewis and Clark re-enactors. Researched leasing costs of three outdoor companies.

Preparing for the Information Center training tour, which is tentatively set for May 2Ė10, 2002.

Have received 61 applications for seasonal positions for travel counselors and/or supervisors at the Interstate Information Centers.

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For 2001, we had 645 individuals/businesses that received recognition for hospitality with the Governorís Certificate, 187 received a gold foil star for a second recognition, and 92 received a gold lapel pin for a third recognition. Continue to evaluate travel-related businessesí comment cards and nomination forms for the 2002 Governorís Certificate of Recognition for Outstanding Hospitality.

Researched speakers for management and front-line training seminars scheduled for spring.

Fulfilled requests for hospitality training information and video.

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Completed updates to the 2002 Travel Show Reference book, which serves as a guide for travel show workers. Completed updates for the Outfitters and Guides book, which is distributed at travel shows.

Letters were sent to the co-op partners who are working the Harrisburg, Milwaukee, and Minneapolis shows.

Attended the International Sportsmen Show in Denver, which was an excellent show. Many of the show goers were interested in vacations, walleye fishing, and pheasant hunting.

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Total FY2002 Inquiries through 02-01-2002: 

Mail: 28,248
Internet (e-mail): 20,314
Phone:   10,943
Total: 59,505

Total FY2001 Inquiries through 02-01-2001:

Mail: 29,885
Internet (e-mail): 15,152
Phone:   12,463
Total: 57,500

This is an overall increase in inquiries of 3.5 percent over FY2001. (This does not include hits/visits to Tourismís Web site.)

Calculated number of page views at 375,434 on Tourismís web site for the period of January 1-31, 2002, for a daily average of 13,408 over a 28-day period (January 17, 30, and 31 missing). This compares to calculated page views of 263,941 for the period of December 29, 2000, through January 24, 2001, for a daily average of 9,776 over a 27-day period. This is an increase in daily average of page views of 37.1 percent over a comparable time period in 2001. "Page views" represents the number of times each and every page within the web site is accessed.

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Reviewed script for first Lewis and Clark (L&C) Minutes segments, to be produced by South Dakota Public Broadcasting.

Sent packets with the L&C Essay information to fourth grade teachers in the state, encouraging them to involve their students in the essay contest.

Sent letters to database of L&C Trail supporters confirming the L&C statewide meeting in February. Scheduled speaker is author Dr. Jim Ronda. Assisted in helping set up a book signing for him at Barnes and Noble in Sioux Falls, as well.

Fulfilled requests for "River of Discovery" video. One was sent to a school group in Montana that is planning a Trail itinerary, starting in St. Louis and ending in Montana.

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Fulfilled requests for "Guide to Indian Reservations and Art" to Yankton Chamber of Commerce and representative of State Historical Society.

Attended two Native American Scenic Byway meetings. The group Okiciapiye has incorporated and the committee continues plans for the inaugural event in June. The Department is arranging for a one-day training session for step-on guides in both Eagle Butte and Vermillion.

Attended an Alliance of Tribal Tourism Advocates meeting in Fort Thompson.

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Fulfilled photo requests to Complete Media, Hartford; Pierre Chamber of Commerce, South Dakota Historical Society, State Publishing, South Dakota Bankers Association, South Dakota Community Foundation, South Dakota Public Utilities Commission, and U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Pierre; Black Hills Federal Credit Union, Hot Pink, Inc., and U.S. Geological Survey, Rapid City; Sioux Printing and Small Business Administration, Sioux Falls; South Dakota Public Broadcasting, Vermillion; Council of State Governments, Illinois; Beyond the West Rally, Massachusetts; Farcountry Press, Montana; Media Projects and Yeshiva University, New York; North Dakota Water Education Foundation; Monaco Coach Corporation, Oregon; Leasure and Associates, Utah; and AmericInn, Wisconsin.

Fulfilled video requests to Complete Media, Hartford; Dakota Post and KELO-TV, Sioux Falls; and South Dakota Public Television, Vermillion.

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Completed addition of iPIX 360-degree photos to all web partners. Added booking links to 50 businesses listed on the Visitor Services Directory for a total of 98 on

Met with representatives from the Bureau of Information and Telecommunications to discuss new system for online packages. Requested development of ASP interface pages for searching on and an SQL database for holding package information. Plan to have new system in place by April 1. Vacation packages currently online include 31 winter packages and 11 romance.

Changed title of hunting and fishing page to give better prominence when engines spider page for ranking.

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Added 3,000 new addresses to Travelsmart, permission e-mail, subscriber list. Sent the January Travelsmart to 46,467 addresses, taking the reader/viewer to travelsd.comís vacation packagesí pages.

Reviewed drafts of Field Guide for Four-Parks campaign. Wrote copy for web site. Partners in this program include Montana, South Dakota, Wyoming/Glacier, Mount Rushmore, Grand Teton, and Yellowstone.

Wrote copy and started layout and design for Spring 2002 Great Getaways. Registered 28 full partners and five bed and breakfast/waterfront resorts. Scheduled to go to printer in March.

Designed and placed full-page "Itís America" ad in March/April issue of Midwest Living, spring issue of Best Vacations, and April issue of Parents magazine. Ad graphic and copy were inspired by the results of the 2001 Image and Market Study.

Held conference call with partners in the South Dakota/Yellowstone/Cody, Wyoming co-op to discuss plans for electronic co-op of permission marketing and search engine keyword ads in April and May.

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Researched and selected E-Direct as opt-in e-mail vendor for winter campaign. Wrote copy and created html message directing users to winter packages on Sent, via E-Direct, to 80,000 e-mail users with demographics weíre targeting in Minnesota, Iowa, Nebraska, Wyoming, North Dakota, and Wisconsin. All being targeted have said they plan to travel within the next six months.

Placed winter co-op ads in newspapers in Sioux Falls, Bismarck, Dickinson, Aberdeen, Gillette and Scottsbluff. Partnered with the Deadwood Chamber and Visitors Bureau (DVB) in this campaign.

Held drawing to select winner of the snowmobile club postcard sweepstakes contest, and notified winner from Dubuque, Iowa, of the Black Hills Winter Vacation sponsored by the DVB. Mailed a letter of congratulations with waiver forms.

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Completed production of pages for the Vacation Guide, which has a delivery date of February 18. Continued to receive and review city ad rebate applications. Have processed 38 applications.

Coordinating reprints of tattoos of American flag, Mount Rushmore, and buffalo designs.

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Compiled Web survey report for fourth quarter of 2001. From those who completed the online survey, we drew two prizewinners: one from Goldsboro, North Carolina, and one from Engelwood, Colorado. Both have been notified.

Some results from the 437 web users who responded to the web survey follows:

52 percent had been to South Dakota before

87 percent said they are planning a trip to South Dakota in the upcoming year

70 percent said answered all of their travel questions

96 percent said they would recommend the site to another traveler

50 percent were referred to by a search engine

65 percent indicated it was their first time visiting

52 percent of the respondents are female; 45 percent are male; 3 percent declined to answer

66 percent are married

46 percent have children under 18 living at home

43 percent of the respondents are from the target states of Minnesota (36), Illinois (33), Wisconsin (28), Iowa (27), Colorado (15), Texas (14), Nebraska (13), Missouri (9), Indiana (6), and North Dakota (3).

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Ringneck Festival, November 9-11, 2001, Huron: Received five evaluations from those sent to organizers and area businesses. Event organizers said Festival attendance increased by about 50 percent over last year. Visitors to the event came from Texas, Illinois, Iowa, Wisconsin, Nebraska, Minnesota, Georgia, North Dakota, Kansas, Missouri, and South Dakota. The event was covered by the Huron Plainsman, Aberdeen American News, and Sioux Falls Argus Leader, as well as KOKK/Z105 radio. Both businesses that responded said they had increased traffic that weekend, and one estimated a boost of 50 percent. Respondents would like to see an increase in activities offered during the event.

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Black Hills Race for the Gold Dog Sled Race, January 12-13, Hill City: Event was postponed due to lack of snow. Local committee has tentatively rescheduled for February 23 and 24. Tourismís web site event listing was updated with new information from the Hill City Chamber of Commerce.

Yesterdayís Tomorrows, selected dates March through December, Madison, Chamberlain, Belle Fourche, Hill City, Deadwood, Redfield, and Pierre: Developed a web page on Coordinated printing and production of 8,000 brochures.

Wild Bill Days, June 14-16, Deadwood: Contacted local committee, and will attend their planning meeting. Designed ad for the March/April issue of Midwest Living.

Crystal Springs Ranch Rodeo, June 21-23, Clear Lake: Met with local organizers and will prepare plan after reviewing committeeís past advertising information/plan. Updated listing and added photos on Tourismís web site. Designed ad for the March/April issue of Midwest Living.

Laura Ingalls Wilder Pageant, June 28-July 14, De Smet: Drafting marketing plan. Updated event information on Tourismís web site and added photos. Designed ad for the March/April issue of Midwest Living.

Oscar Micheaux Film Festival, August 7-11, Gregory: Updated information on Tourismís web site.

Frontier Days, August 16-18, White River: Will attend their next planning meeting.

Lewis and Clark Heritage Days, August 17-18 and 22, Elk Point: Updated information on Tourismís web site.

Lewis and Clark Spirit Mound Festival, August 24-25, Vermillion: Drafting a marketing plan.

Mickelson Trail Trek, September 20-22, Black Hills: Updated event information on Tourismís web page. Designed and coordinated production of ad for the annual issue of the League of American Bicyclists almanac.

South Dakota Highland Festival, September 14, Scotland: Updated information on Tourismís web site.

St. Joseph Indian School Days/Pow Wow, September 27-28, Chamberlain: Drafting a marketing plan.

Black Hills Pow Wow, October 11-13, Rapid City: Updated information on Tourismís web site.

Ringneck Festival, November 8-9, Huron: Updated information on Tourismís web site.

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Deadwood gaming revenue deposited for Tourism for December 2001 was up 39 percent at $115,656, as compared to $83,194 for December 2000. The tourism tax deposited for December 2001 was up 11.8 percent at $189,002, as compared to $169,033 for December 2000. Revenue deposits for the Department for FY2002 are up at $4,088,061, as compared to $3,980,811 for FY2001, showing an overall increase of 2.7 percent.

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