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Noble Studios Wins at Visit California’s Poppy Awards

February 25, 2022

We’ve never been more excited to get flowers. Noble Studios, Incline Village Crystal Bay Visitors Bureau and Lake Tahoe Visitors Authority were recognized with “Best Paid Social Media Campaign” in the Visit California Poppy Awards. The award presentation is the finale to Visit California’s Outlook forum in San Francisco. This year, as shown in the picture above, Noble Studios Client Success Manager Erin Stiehler was in attendance to accept the floral trophy with Bart Peterson, Business Development Manager of North Lake Tahoe, Andy Chapman, President/CEO of North Lake Tahoe, Carol Chaplin, President/CEO of Lake Tahoe Visitors Authority, Stuart Maas, Director Of Marketing & Conference Sales of Lake Tahoe Visitors Authority, and Greg Long, Operations and Finance Director of North Lake Tahoe.

Best Paid Social Media Campaign Award

The campaign “Trade Texas for Tahoe” campaign resulted from a cooperative digital effort that focused on driving consumer interest and travel to the Lake Tahoe region.

In Q4 of 2020, the Lake Tahoe Regional DMOs took advantage of a unique opportunity to create the “Texas to Tahoe” recovery campaign. The two forces behind the campaign were new non-stop service to the region’s largest airport and a CARES Act grant. 

New non-stop flights from Dallas and Houston to Reno-Tahoe International Airport (RNO) would bring visitors to the doorstep of the multi-state destination. Our research found that search demand for Reno from Houston and Dallas steadily increased from June 2020 through October 2020, when the campaign was created. Additionally, flight bookings to RNO from both cities had already recovered to pre-COVID-19 March 2020 levels by October 2020.

A CARES Act grant, combined with funding from the individual Tahoe North Visitors and Convention Bureau, Incline Village Crystal Bay Visitors Bureau and Lake Tahoe Visitors Authority tourism organizations, provided a budget to promote Lake Tahoe’s unique natural amenities to an audience ready to travel to the great outdoors again. The grant funds had to be used by March 2021.

The “Texas to Tahoe” concept juxtaposes things stereotypically found in Texas with those in Lake Tahoe during the winter. These images were split visually over an expansive Lake Tahoe background and the suggestion that people should “trade a Texas inspired item for a Tahoe focused one this winter.

These insights formed our rationale for multi-channel digital advertising that focused on users at different phases of the traveler’s journey. Paid social was a key mid-funnel tactic with proven high engagement. In addition, we used paid social media to address intent-based audiences with personalized creative.

Efforts resulted in more than 26 million impressions, exceeding industry benchmarks for performance. The landing page for the campaign totaled 66k sessions, 55k users and earned 5k partner referrals and a 6.85% Partner Referral conversion rate. 

“As part of our recovery efforts, collaborating with partners and executing a nimble, responsive, high-performing creative campaign in a key flight market helped our businesses beyond what would be possible individually, further reinforcing Tahoe’s ongoing resilience,” said Carol Chaplin, president and CEO of the Lake Tahoe Visitors Authority.

The Prestigious Visit California Poppy Award

The Visit California Poppy Awards honor the best and brightest of California tourism marketing. The awards are bestowed in even numbered years and serve to recognize excellence in California tourism promotion. 

Visit California received a record 218 entries from tourism destinations and tourism industry partners for the 2022 Poppy Awards. Winners are selected by a panel of industry marketing experts in eight categories ranging from best influencer campaigns to public relations campaigns and content marketing campaigns. 

While Noble Studios was won many travel marketing awards, this is our first Vist California Poppy Award.

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