e-Traveler - Register for the Iowa Tourism Office Update Webinar + More

April 10, 2024

April 10, 2024

Here are the most important updates this week: 

  • Register for the Iowa Tourism Office Update Webinar on April 18 at 2 p.m.
  • Share information with us to be featured in the 2025 Iowa Travel Guide.
  • Learn about the March surge in signups and check-ins to the Iowa Wine, Beer and Distillery Passports.

Reminder: Register for the Iowa Tourism Office Update Webinar
Sign up now for the next Iowa Tourism Office Update Webinar, held on Thursday, April 18, 2024, at 2 p.m. Topics will include the new Co-op Partnership Program, plans for celebrating 2024 National Travel and Tourism Week and more. Register here to join in! 

Be sure to also save the date for the next Tourism Insider Meeting in Sioux City on May 21-22, 2024. Hotel and registration details will be shared in the coming weeks.

Opportunity: Be Showcased in Travel Guide Content
Want your community showcased in the upcoming 2025 Iowa Travel Guide? We’re looking for locations that fit the following content features:
  • Indoor play areas: arcades, go karts, mini golf, etc.
  • Public art along a bike trail: can be sculptures or murals
  • Farm stays: working farms where visitors can spend the night
  • Insta-worthy murals: what is the must-see mural in your community?
  • Mountain biking: interested in talking to a mountain biking enthusiast to share his/her expertise on best trails in Iowa, tips for beginners, etc.
Have something that fits any/all of the above? Please email Jessica O'Riley (jessica.oriley@iowaeda.com) with the details by May 31, 2024.

Revamped FY25 Co-op Includes Marketing Bundle, Traditional Favorites

Taking a new perspective on co-operative marketing, the FY25 program provides streamlined and simplified options providing value and connection to broader campaigns.

The new Marketing Co-op Bundle includes digital display, native, programmatic audio, digital billboards and video/CTV/OTT. Two bundle options (fall 2024 and spring 2025) are available, each running 10 weeks. Traditional favorites are also available: traveliowa.com leads, consumer email marketing, dedicated email, sponsored content, social media and influencers.

Reservations, taken on a first come, first served basis, will open May 1 at 10 a.m. and close at 4 p.m. on May 15. Contact Jessica O’Riley (jessica.oriley@iowaeda.com) with questions.

Contact information for regional print publications, ROVA and Sojern are also provided for those who may wish to pursue insertions on their own. [Note: Buys in the publications or Sojern would be eligible for tourism marketing grants.

Iowa Wine, Beer and Distillery Passports Update
March was a huge month for signups and check-ins to the Iowa Wine, Beer and Distillery Passports.

As a result of social media and search marketing tactics as well as a distillery newsletter, there were 1,425 signups and 362 check-ins to participating businesses in the three passports during March. These passports are a great hook to get visitors to support Iowa’s craft beer, wine and spirits industries and are a free marketing tool for participating businesses. With 567 beer passport signups, 480 distillery passport signups and 388 wine passport signups, it’s clear there is a ‘thirst’!  

If you don’t see a specific business in your community participating in the passports or have any questions, reach out to Stephanie Neppl (stephanie.neppl@iowaeda.com). 

MoLo Hotel Included in Boston Globe Article
A Boston Globe article published on March 22 featured the renaissance of motels across the country, including the MoLo in Des Moines. Slated to open in 2025, MoLo is a $22 million restoration of a Howard Johnson’s Motor Lodge, complete with the famed cross-hatched orange roof and aqua-blue spire.

Meet in Iowa Application Period Open

The Meet in Iowa program is now taking applications through Friday, May 17, 2024. Eligible events can receive up to $25,000 reimbursement on eligible expenses by hosting their event in Iowa. Events must occur between June 1, 2024 and December 31, 2025. Conferences, meetings, conventions and tradeshows are eligible if they add a tourism experience and encourage 33% of their attendees to book an extra night. Events that bring in a majority of attendees from out of state are preferred. Learn more here, or contact Katelyn Adams (kadams@restaurantiowa.com). 

Helpful Tools to Organize Grant Opportunities
It's easy to get carried away with the ‘grant game’ and promise something you can’t deliver because it's outside your ability, you ran out of time or it costs more than you thought it would. The grant world is small. Grantors frequently share information and many grant administrators score applications for multiple agencies or organizations. Also, some funders prefer to grant to previous grantees who have earned their trust. 

Featured Grant: Alliant Energy accepts online applications year-round and reviews submissions monthly. Multiple focus areas align with tourism goals. Environmental Stewardship includes park updates and trail projects; Community Safety and Engagement includes community events and playground updates.