Visit Hagerstown: A Digital Success Story

Award winning photo 10302015
(Photo, appearing left to right: Jolene Thomas, Daniel Spedden, Betsy De Vore, and Audrey Vargason)

Visit Hagerstown–Washington County Convention and Visitors Bureau recently brought home the award for Best Digital Marketing Campaign at the annual Maryland Tourism Coalition’s Tourism and Travel Summit. Visit Hagerstown accepted the award, during the conference’s Annual Awards Banquet held Thursday, October 29, at the Turf Valley Resort in Ellicott City, MD.
A digital campaign was launched to promote the Hagerstown Sun’s 35th Anniversary this year and ran from April to August. The campaign resulted in a positive increase in attendance at Suns games, by nearly 10%, which had been showing declining attendance numbers for the past two years. The Hagerstown Suns is a top attraction in Washington County for residents and visitors.
The four-month campaign was launched in partnership with local media company, Manning Media Inc., broadcasting five radio signals, streaming online at and, and owner of a digital marketing division, distributing digital ads through a wide variety of digital products and services in cooperation with over 48,000 web publishers and mobile applications.
CVB-SUNS-300x250-Fun-ver1Behavioral and geographical targeting, and the use of specific key words were the driving elements of where ads appeared. Very high profile websites, such as Travelocity, Sports Illustrated, and many others, displayed the ads. Also involved in the project was Interfuse, Inc., a national tourism media/development firm, which distributed sponsored articles to assist in creating overnight stays that included the Hagerstown Suns as part of a family trip to the area.
“We constantly strive to create and implement marketing strategies across all platforms and it’s gratifying to have our hard work recognized among our industry peers and partners,” said Daniel P. Spedden, president of Visit Hagerstown. “This year marks the first year that the CVB has entered into the digital marketing world, and the results are impressive.”
Several destination marketing organizations from across Maryland competed for this award. The Maryland Tourism Coalition (MTC) awards committee reviews each application and makes selections based on demonstration of outstanding tourism marketing efforts in several categories. Each year, the MTC Tourism Summit’s awards are given in the professional and marketing categories to honor colleagues, employees and associates whose skill, dedication, and talent bring innovation and professionalism to Maryland tourism.
About Visit Hagerstown:
Visit Hagerstown-Washington County Convention and Visitors Bureau is a 501(c)6 nonprofit organization whose mission is to help attract visitors to Hagerstown and Washington County. The CVB helps to create vibrant growth for the local economy by promoting, developing and expanding the local visitor industry.
About Maryland Tourism Coalition:
From the MTC website: “MTC strives to create the most productive statewide tourism climate possible. Members from all segments of the industry work together to promote business, participate in professional development activities, and enhance our economic impact for the benefit of all Marylanders. Together…as a tourism coalition, we can strengthen our industry and positively affect our economy, which benefits all Marylanders.”

Press release provided by Visit Hagerstown and Washington County Convention and Visitor’s Bureau.
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