World tourism – A $2.1 million effect on North Dakota

 Saturday, November 16, 2019 


Foreign visitors are attracted to North Dakota through marketing campaigns like those by North Dakota Tourism Global Marketing Manager, Fred Walker and his partners within the destination marketing community.


A Rocky Mountain International research found that in 2018, spending in North Dakota by visitors from the U.K., Germany, France, Australia, the Nordics and Benelux were at $2.1 million. This was a 14% rise year-over-year (YOY). International visitors booked 6,792 rooms (+14% YOY) and returned $6 for every $1 spent on marketing the state to those regions.


“North Dakota markets cooperatively with South Dakota, Wyoming, Montana and Idaho under the Great American West brand,” Sara Otte Coleman, North Dakota tourism director said “North Dakota is building awareness in the global market. By developing and providing diverse offerings, using strong marketing content and being able to react quickly to requests from overseas operators, we are seeing increasing numbers of visitors from afar.”


The Great American West brand is constructed on the remarkable cultures of the region, Walker has worked narrowly with the North Dakota Native Tourism Alliance to build up and present Native American experiences to a worldwide market.


“Tribal tourism experiences are extremely popular right now in all markets–especially authentic experiences,” Walker said. “We are looking at how to tie broader offerings to existing powwows so visitors can be immersed and learn more about the Native American cultures.”


To expand international visitation to North Dakota, Walker regularly takes part in international tourism sales events. Earlier this year, Walker attended a sales event at Travel Week in London that resulted in 39 scheduled meetings and 10 additional visits.


“Travel Week leveled the playing field,” Walker said. “North Dakota was next door to Las Vegas with the same size table and signage, same amount of time with each tour operator, and same number of appointments.”


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