Meetings Marketing Campaign
In 2021 VISIT Milwaukee and Madden began partnering together to focus exclusively on repositioning their meetings and group marketing efforts. With a $456 million expansion of their convention center underway, slated to open in 2024, there is a heightened sense of urgency among all key stakeholders to ensure that the meetings and convention market is strong and thriving leading up to and through the opening. In early 2022, we deployed a multi-faceted meetings marketing campaign to position Milwaukee as a premier meetings destination and educate planners about the expansion and gain exposure for the VISIT Milwaukee sales team directly through premier sponsorship opportunities at industry events.
We took a multi-faceted approach to this campaign. Our strategy has three main components: paid media, conference sponsorship, and industry engagement. The Madden team handles all elements of the campaign from strategy and design to media buying and optimization.
VISIT Milwaukee’s meetings marketing paid media strategy included a combination of SEM, social media, and geofencing enhanced display advertising. Overall, we managed over $367,000 of paid media.
Through initial strategic planning sessions and research, the Madden team helped to identify and recommend a series of shows throughout the year as priority events to engage with—both in forms of attendance and sponsorship. These conferences were selected based on the attendees or conference topic that aligned with the top industries VISIT Milwaukee wanted to attract for conferences, including sports, education, faith, diversity and inclusion, and general meetings and events planners. Sponsorship activations included a branded selfie wall at IMEX 2022, meeting planner breakfasts at Connect: Puerto Rico and World Education Conference, and stage time and digital signage at Connect Meetings & Sports.
We’re also actively vetting and managing industry engagement opportunities to spread awareness of VISIT Milwaukee and play a thought leadership role in the industry. These opportunities have included sponsored content in Black Meetings & Tourism and Smart Meetings and paid advertising with LGBT Meeting Professionals Association, Meetings Today, and other trade publications.
Through a partnership with Black Meetings & Tourism, Madden helped VISIT Milwaukee coordinate a three-day tour of Milwaukee for 15 meeting planners featuring great partners like Wisconsin Center District, Milwaukee World Festival, Inc., Hilton Milwaukee City Center, America’s Black Holocaust Museum, Hyatt Regency Milwaukee, Milwaukee Brewers, The Bartolotta Restaurants, Potawatomi Hotel & Casino, Milwaukee Habitat for Humanity, Ford Motor Company, Edible Arrangements, and Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc.