Up your marketing game

Get meeting planners to book their next meeting

Meetings, from larger events like conventions to smaller off-site company gatherings or group events, have the ability to bring visitors to your destination. But how do you go about getting the attention of meeting planners?

Having done many meetings campaigns for our partners, we recommend:

  • Showcase what makes holding a meeting in your destination different from a meeting in a competitor’s destination.
  • Always make sure to have dedicated pages on your website for this specific audience with clear calls-to-action.
  • Upgrade your search efforts to ensure meeting planners searching for the perfect venue are able to find you.
  • Use LinkedIn’s and Facebook’s platforms with hyper-targeting tactics to drive planners to your site.

Showcase what makes you different

The core of each meetings campaign we run is a custom-created story, written from the perspective of an event planner or attendee that shows how your destination is an ideal meetings location. This format goes well beyond the meetings content that most DMOs have on their websites. Most destinations only highlight the technical aspects of their meeting capabilities, the number of rooms or the services of the venue—but nearly every destination has meetings locations. What makes your destination different? Just like with leisure marketing, the best way to convince a planner that your destination is the “one” is to inspire them with the things they can do after working hours. If attendees are really excited about the destination their meeting is in, they may even stay a few days before or after the meeting exploring the destination.

So how do you inspire planners? We’ve found inspiration is at its highest with Amplified Storytelling.

Making search work for you

Madden search

We collaborate with our partners on relevant story ideas, bringing SEO keyword research to the table in order to develop content that will most interest your audience. Then we hire talented writers who create a first-person narrative from the view of a meeting planner or conference attendee, showcasing the destination as well as the meetings venues and opportunities.  We work with our partners every step of the way to make sure it stays true to their destination.

In addition to having SEO-charged copy on your site, we also recommend running SEM ads to get your website on top of the search results when planners are Googling.

Reaching the right audience

Once the story is created, fully designed with images and interactive elements, we send readers to the story through LinkedIn and Facebook ads. On these platforms we target meeting planners, the decision makers who you really want to read your story. From there, we’ll encourage those planners to take the next steps—contacting you for more information.

Continuing the Madden family legacy

With over 90 employees, it’s sometimes hard to remember that Madden is a family-owned company. Kevin and Jill Madden started Madden Media, then Madden Publishing, over 35 years ago. They went from door to door, building relationships in the community while selling print ads for Tucson Guide. The rest is history, but recently Madden has opened a new chapter in the Madden story. Bailey Madden, one of the daughters of Kevin and Jill, has recently joined the team as Market Engagement Director.

“We have always advocated Tucson as a great place to live, work, and play and now we have one of our own doing just that. I hope many more graduates decide to make Tucson their home as well.”–Kevin Madden, owner

When she was young, Bailey spent a lot of time with her mother in the office and on sales calls. She would sit beside Jill Madden and cut up magazines, pasting them back together to showcase destinations in her own way. When she grew up, she wanted to be just like her mother. Bailey saw how much her parents cared about the community. They were passionate about Tucson and the tourism industry, and she caught it like a bug.

Summer often meant an annual trip and drive to Montana where the entire family would pile into the car. The family vacations strengthened their familial bonds—bonds which remain strong to this day. As an adult, Bailey has traveled the world, taking in the beauty of new places and discovering anew what travel can mean to both destinations and travelers. In her own words, Bailey believes, “There are few things more important than travel, as it leads to a more open and accepting world.”

After college, receiving a B.S. in Finance from Oregon State University, Bailey struck out on her own, working in a tech startup in Colorado. She worked as a Customer Success Manager, in charge of account management for a variety of clients, including Anheuser-Busch, Beam Suntory, Maui Jim, Otterbox, Clorox, Atkins Nutritionals, and Citizen Watch. Her work spanned across industries; alcohol beverage suppliers and distributors, consumer packaged goods, luxury goods, beauty products, and more. She built relationships with these clients, working to retain, grow, and renew the accounts. Her experience in the tech startup was very valuable, as she was able to take her working knowledge of how Madden operated, compare it to another company, and bring what she learned to her new position at Madden.

Bailey’s new position at Madden has allowed her to return to the city and community she cares for so deeply. She is excited to bring her creative approaches to solving problems to the table to continue Madden’s position as a driving force in the destination marketing industry.

“I know Bailey will do a great job and Jill and I are both excited to have her join the company we started 36 years ago.”
–Kevin Madden, Owner

Meet Bailey Madden

Bailey Madden

Bailey is a determined young professional with a passion for contributing to the growth of companies. She thrives in constantly changing environments that provide her with ongoing challenges and projects to work on. She is interested in companies that have an inviting culture and that provide her with continual learning and new experiences.

Travel this Veterans Day

As Veterans Day nears, we should take time to think about how we spend our time off. 54% of families in the United States end up not taking all their time off, according to Project: Time Off, and veterans are no exception. With deployments and training assignments, veterans spend a lot of time away from their families, so it is even more important, when they do return home, to rebuild relationships and connections.

Each time a deployment ends, service members are briefed about reintegration into their normal lives. Whether it’s three months or several years, things will have changed at home. From haircuts and routines to children growing older, changes affect the relationship dynamics of families. Type in “military return home” in Google and you’ll be confronted by an endless stream of videos sure to make you tear up as veterans are greeted by wives and husbands, dogs, and children. But after that initial “welcome home” moment, settling back into normal life after so much time away can be awkward and difficult, mixing emotions of happiness, relief, anger, and guilt can arise and often PTSD can make the transition even more fraught with difficulty. It will take time to adjust.

We recommend using time off to rebuild relationships. After all, individuals who participate in higher levels of leisure activity are more likely to have an increase in positive moods, attention span, and the ability to reflect on problems.1

In a study that analyzed the letters of 67 veterans who attended a therapeutic fly-fishing program in Dutch John, Utah along the Green River, it was found that the outdoor activity helped veterans with PTSD rediscover purpose in life, improve relationships, feel a sense of success, and work toward recovery. One veteran wrote, “Spending time with the (…) program has shown me it’s okay to enjoy what God has to offer. You support helped (…) to remind me to live life instead of hide from it.”2

Travel has a way of transforming. Our CEO, Dan Janes, is both a veteran and a family man. He encourages our employees to use their time off to explore locally, nationally, and abroad, finding unique destinations that provide the setting for memories to be created and relationships strengthened. Having been through deployments himself, Dan says, “Being a veteran often requires sacrifice, not only by the service member, but also by their families: those who keep things running a home so the service member can put their country first. I think it is important to make use of the time we do have with our families to reconnect and strengthen relationships.”

Photo of Military Brass Band with U.S.Flags

This Veterans Day we encourage you to spend time with your family. Take the time to travel and create new memories. Take the time to laugh and enjoy the outdoors. Work will still be there when you get back.

For active duty and veterans, we recommend checking out the deals compiled on Military.com. You’ll find links to specials and deals like B&B offering complimentary rooms and museums and parks with free admission.

1 Mayer, F. S., Frantz, C. M., Bruehlman-Senecal, E., & Dolliver, K. (2009). Why Is Nature Beneficial? Environment and Behavior, 41(5), 607-643.
Mowatt, R. A., & Bennett, J. (2011). War Narratives. Veteran Stories, PTSD Effects, and Therapeutic Fly-Fishing. Therapeutic Recreation Journal, 45(4), 286-308.

Madden | Full-Service Agency

You are looking for a partner who will not only help you meet your key goals and run a cohesive campaign—but also work alongside you. We bring our experience and expertise in digital marketing and vendor management to the table to make your life easier.

Trust is the foundation

We’re open and transparent in everything we do: who we’re partnering with, the third-party tools we use, the platforms we work on, even our pricing. Everything we do is for your benefit, so there’s no reason to keep secrets.

One stop shop

Madden has a long history of partnering, coordinating, and managing other companies to run our partners’ campaigns. From negotiating print and digital media buys to partnering with vendors, writers, photographers, and influencers to employ their talent—we’re the masters of coordination and vendor management. We work with you to develop the campaign strategy and vision. Then we take it from there, overseeing vendors, media buys, contracts, and invoices so you don’t have to. You won’t just save time and energy, but you’ll also save money, as we pass the savings of our partnerships and negotiations on to you. We want you to get the best team for the best value.

#yournewbff

You will have a primary contact responsible for day-to-day communication, as well as effectively managing timeline, budget, and project status—we call this person an Account Manager. Your AM will also keep the extended team aware of all that is happening with the program. You will always have the entire strength of Madden behind you; that’s more than 100 people working tirelessly to make sure your campaign surpasses your expectations.

Our partners

We work exclusively in the destination marketing industry space, with over 2,000 partners across the United States and Canada.

Project: Time Off

Madden is on a mission to encourage people to discover new locations and experiences.

Latest trends show more and more workers are taking advantage of available vacation days—leaving fewer days unused. We think that’s fantastic news because we believe getting people out of their homes and into new places makes for stronger individuals, communities, and economies. Taking vacations also leads to relaxation, contentment, creativity, and—amazingly enough—productivity. Get out of office!

To learn more about the upside of downtime, check out U.S. Travel’s initiative Project: Time Off.

Relocating: Untapped Revenue in Destination Economic Development

Are you sitting on a gold mine?

Economic Development. You may have heard that your competition is doing it, or maybe you’ve done it before, but it wasn’t very successful. You may be sitting on an untouched gold mine of previously ignored revenue.

Job Seekers Willing to Relocate

Higher pay, check. Great benefits, check.

Fantastic nightlife, entertainment, and dining? Check, check, check.

People are always dreaming of the perfect job, but don’t always consider that the perfect job could be in a different city—or even a different state. It can be a challenge switch professional’s focus and encourage them to consider jobs outside their city and/or state. 

84 percent of Millennials are willing to relocate for a job

Professionals want to live somewhere they can have fun and relax during the weekend. Somewhere they’ll be happy to call home. Salary and benefits are a huge draw to a job, but moving over a long distance can often be a leap of faith. Professionals want to know that they’re moving for a good reason.

Build it, And They Will Come

According to a new survey of workers aged 18-35 by Wakefield Research for Graebel, 84 percent of Millennials are willing to relocate for a job. You just need to reach these job seekers in a way that inspires them to uproot and move to your destination. A report by Realtor.com notes that Pittsburgh is doing just that. Pittsburgh is currently one of the top cities  millennials are loving to relocate to. Those who live in the city compare it to Portland. Pittsburgh has low housing costs, a thriving nightlife, and a revitalized waterfront, all elements that encourage millennials to come to the city and to stay.

We’ve found that showing off the top quality-of-life reasons to live in a destination is the best way to target professionals looking for a job and influence them as they consider moving. More and more job seekers are considering a place they love to move to first, and then finding a job in it.

Relocating Companies

Remember in early 2018 when Amazon announced they were looking for a new city to open up their 2nd headquarters and everyone was throwing their hat into the ring? Amazon estimated that the winner would get up to $5 billion in investment and would mean an additional 50,000 high-paying jobs for the area. It’s a major revenue generating game-changer for any city and destination. Not only does it mean a boost for your economy, also creates destination awareness with every article, press release, or media mention of the move.

Most Economic Development campaigns focus on targeting much smaller companies than Amazon to relocate. While you may not see the exact ROI that Amazon quoted, the impact to your economy and the people who live in your destination will still be substantial.

Curious about the Madden approach to strategic Economic Development campaigns?

Social Fidelity (So-Fi) Video

Get Real Reel: Harnessing Engaged Audiences for Video Storytelling

Building a brand demands authentic connection with your audience. While professionally polished videos can be a huge benefit, there’s another tool worth adding to your box: So-Fi Video. This is the way to simultaneously expand your video library and deepen connection to your audience.

User Generated Content: Storytellers for your story

You may have a heard of User Generated Content (UGC), the term that’s often used in the context of brand-related images shared on social media and brand websites. UGC is any kind of content created by users that is publicly available. It can be anything from articles and blog posts, to videos and Instagram photos. This is the space where lines between audience and brand blur. Consumers interact with and contribute content to the brand, adding to your story. The relationship becomes a duet of sorts.

What is So-Fi Video?

Social-Fidelity Video—or So-Fi Video for short—is the Madden solution to  video User Generated Content.

With Madden’s strategic expertise at your disposal, you decide on the shot-list, Madden distributes the campaign to soon-to-be videographers, and the project gets rolling!

How does So-Fi Video work?

With So-Fi Video, you’ll invite your audience to shoot and share unscripted video and still images of authentic interactions according to your shot-list. That doesn’t mean chaos reigns. With Madden, you’ll gain shared ownership of assets in real time that you can approve and share instantly. Additionally, you’ll get a professionally edited compilation video that shows off the cooperative result.

What are the benefits?

User Generated Content—first merely a “trendy new thing,” is quickly becoming a staple marketing strategy, and for many good reasons. Top reasons to integrate UGC—especially So-Fi Video—are cost, time, authenticity, and engagement.

  • Cost: So-Fi Video is far more budget-friendly than hiring professionals, which makes building and maintaining a strong library of assets more achievable. Especially when it comes to video, where professional production involves a whole team of crewmembers and editors, So-Fi Video is a major bargain.
  • Time: So-Fi Video is simple. Photos are snapped, videos are shot, and the assets are shared with you. It can all take place within the span of a few minutes. Production for professional work involves planning, scheduling, filming, editing, and then sharing. Professional products can be awesome, but need time for proper execution. If you’re looking for a wide range of assets in real-time, So-Fi Video is the way to go.
  • Authenticity: Many brands heavily filter for tone, voice, and presentation. While the filter can yield a polished aura, there’s an inherent separation because the realities of imperfection are washed away. Today’s audiences know that and readily applaud #nofilter. Raw and imperfect = real and authentic.
  • Engagement: So-Fi Video has benefits at the end of the campaign and along the journey. The end result is a fully stocked and up-to-the-minute library of assets. Along the way, the very people you’re marketing to have invested in your brand. Not only have they noticed you, but they’ve endorsed you. There’s a connection.

Get real reel

Absolutely, produce that once-a-year or once-a-season, professionally polished video showcasing your best angles. Also, start opening doors and lenses to authentic interaction between your brand and your audience.

OnLocation & OnLocation PLUS

In the SEO game, awareness is everything

We are excited to tell you about the launch of OnLocation and OnLocation PLUS—Madden’s newest SEO-boosting product lines that will allow you and your partners to reap the following benefits:

  • Increase and improve your brand awareness in Google searches
  • Generate more organic clicks to your site
  • Increase the number of visitors in your market
  • Provide travelers a way to find waypoints while they are in your location and when they are in the planning stages

Let us do the heavy lifting

When you hear SEO jargon such as “increasing meta description”, “h1 tags”, “backlinks”, or “barnacle SEO,” do you feel a bit overwhelmed? No worries because our team at Madden lives and breathes this stuff and our brand-new program—OnLocation—is about having us do it all so you don’t have to. Madden will conduct an in-depth evaluation of the top 25–30 attractions in your market from our offices in Tucson, Arizona. We’ll also evaluate your consumer reviews, photos, and events to determine whether they are on brand and positively promoting your market and partners.

“SEO leads have a 14.6% close rate, while outbound leads (such as direct mail or print advertising) have a 1.7% close rate.”1

Feet on your streets

Even better, OnLocation PLUS includes all of the good stuff from OnLocation, and we go, you guessed it, on location to your neck of the woods where we’ll conduct in-person, two-day networking workshops with Google Local Guides and your partners. New reviews on Google Maps, exclusive training on maintaining compelling content for Google My Business, touring your destination’s top attractions to collect photos and video assets for your partners to use in Google My Business, and weekly reporting calls to high-five about your SEO progress are included.

“A Google study recently ran two variations of the same ad—a traditional video versus a 360-degree video—and the 360 version triumphed with 41% more ‘earned actions’ (subscribes, shares, and views).”2

Lead by example

Your partners look to you as an expert. When you get on board with implementing everything Madden can do to boost your SEO, both you and your partners will benefit. You’ll appear more prominently in Google searches and all of you will reap the rewards.

Sources: 1 imFORZA.com, 2 tnooz.com

Location-based Marketing

Want to target audiences in a particular location? By now you’ve probably heard about Geofencing, and might even have incorporated it into your marketing mix, but what about Boomerang? How do you know which digital marketing tool will best meet your needs? Have no fear—the answer is clear:

Madden | Geofencing

From a person’s location, you can glean valuable details about who they are. Geofencing is a location-based digital marketing tool that allows marketers to welcome potential customers who enter a virtual perimeter with mobile display ads relative to their location. For example, travelers are targeted with ads for your destination simply because they have entered a strategically chosen and precise area.

How it works:

  • Visitors enter your geo-targeted area
  • While browsing on their phone, they see your ad
  • Clicking sends them to your site

Digital Marketing Tools How Geofencing and Boomerage can help reach customers

Madden | Boomerang

We take Mobile Display Ads a step further— we can serve ads to event leads before they even visit your website! With Boomerang, you can go back and connect with visitors to high-traffic events, attractions, or accommodations from the past year. Madden has developed a custom network of high-quality users based on their attendance at industry-specific events using historical date ranges and map-based technology, in addition to the many other ways to utilize this technology.

How it works:

  • Events, attractions, or accommodations where your target audience was present are identified
  • We “travel back in time” to find visitors who were at that location
  • Custom mobile ads are served to the consumers within the geofence at the date and time identified

Real-world example:

Visit Frisco wanted to entice meeting planners to travel to Texas for their next event. A geofence was created around a conference center where an event for meeting planners took place.

Geofencing: During the event, attendees were served Mobile Display Ads that clicked through to Frisco’s landing page.

Boomerang: Thirty days after the conference, attendees continued to receive mobile ads about Frisco’s event capabilities.

Analytics for the campaign showed that audiences were extremely engaged. Click-through rates for both initial and follow up ads were well above industry averages, bounce rates were far below typical percentages, and time on page rose far beyond the site average.

Which should you pick?

Use Geofencing if you want to serve mobile ads to audiences at a particular place during a particular time frame.

  • Example: A restaurant geofences a nearby sports arena during a big game in order to increase brand awareness.

Use Boomerang if you want to serve mobile ads to an audience that attended an event or location after the event is over.

  • Example: Vineyard X serves ads to audiences who attended a competitor Vineyard Y’s event last month in order to promote Vineyard X’s upcoming event.

Whether used in tandem or separately, Geofencing and Boomerang are effective digital marketing tools to add to your campaign when used strategically.

Now anyone can create a professional video ad

If you’ve wanted to advertise on YouTube to reach consumers with your video ads but don’t have the time, money, or direction to create them, you’re in luck. As of March 2018, the YouTube Director onsite program has been made available in more than 170 cities across the U.S. to help businesses leverage the power and reach of the platform.

As a marketer in the travel industry that strives to reach travelers with your campaigns, this program makes it easy for anyone to create a professional video to include in your efforts. When you commit to spending at least $350 in advertising on YouTube through Google AdWords, you can access the program to connect with an expert to film and edit a 30-second professional YouTube video. That amount of spend can typically yield over 1,000 views. What would you do with 1,000 new travelers getting to experience your brand through video on a platform with over one billion users?

Now that there are no excuses, it’s time to get your video made and get it out there for travelers to consume and be inspired.