(Virginia Beach, Va., November 13, 2013) – The Virginia Beach Convention & Visitors Bureau (CVB) is proud to announce that Ron Kuhlman, Vice President of Tourism Marketing & Sales, was honored at the Southeast Tourism Society (STS) Fall Forum with the “Dorothy Hardman Spirit of STS” award. In addition, the Virginia Beach CVB won the STS 2013 Best Niche Marketing Campaign Shining Example award for its online "Perfect Beach Weddings" marketing campaign. The awards were announced last week at the STS Fall Forum in Jacksonville, Florida.
STS is a nonprofit organization dedicated to the promotion and development of tourism throughout the Southeast. The “Dorothy Hardman Spirit of STS” award is a special recognition given to an individual whose personal contributions exemplify the late Dorothy Hardman’s passion for the Society’s members and purpose. Kuhlman is an STS Board Member who joined the organization at its founding. He also holds a position on the U.S. Travel Association’s Communications Committee. Kuhlman has worked with the Virginia Beach CVB for 22 years and has helped Virginia Beach become a well-renowned year-round destination. His is currently responsible for driving increased visitation to Virginia Beach from international markets, specifically Brazil, China, and Western Europe.
The "Perfect Beach Weddings" campaign was created to increase the CVB's niche market business by capturing more destination weddings, which was identified as a growth opportunity for Virginia Beach. The messaging for the campaign focused on Virginia Beach’s unique offering: the chance to reserve a spot on the public shores of Virginia Beach for a wedding ceremony through an inexpensive permit. With the number of destination weddings on the rise and given Virginia Beach's prime East Coast location, campaign focused on brides that live in drive states such as Washington D.C., Maryland, Virginia, North Carolina, West Virginia and Pennsylvania. The entire campaign was executed using online marketing and public relations tactics. In addition to creating a visually compelling, customized wedding planning section within www.VisitVirginiaBeach.com, popular social media platforms were utilized including Pinterest, Twitter and Facebook. Since the launch of the campaign, www.VisitVirginiaBeach.com has seen a 400 percent increase in traffic.
Founded in 1983, STS is dedicated to improving the economic vitality of its member states by uniting all segments of the Travel and Tourism Industry, sharing resources, fostering cooperation, provide continuing education and promoting tourism within and to member states of Alabama, Arkansas, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee, Virginia, and West Virginia.
Virginia Beach Convention & Visitors Bureau (www.visitvirginiabeach.com)
Where the Atlantic Ocean and the Chesapeake Bay meet, Virginia Beach promises visitors a unique chance to “Live the Life” in this coastal cosmopolitan destination. Nature at its finest, just-caught and just-picked local food, downtown sophistication, and toes-in-the-sand relaxation combine for a soul-satisfying experience unlike any other on the East Coast. A world-renowned boardwalk, energetic downtown, state-of-the-art Convention Center, abundant parks and waterways, and mild year-round weather give rise to an active lifestyle and flourishing local culture. The Virginia Beach CVB is responsible for promoting year-round leisure, business, meetings and conventions, international and sports travel to Virginia’s most populous city. For media information and images, visit www.VisitVirginiaBeach.com/pressroom. Follow Virginia Beach on Twitter at twitter.com/vabeachcvb, Facebook at www.facebook.com/VirginiaBeachVA and Pinterest at www.pinterest.com/visitvabeach.