Turn Data into Award-winning Digital Designs

By Paige Schwitters
  • Tourism
  • 06.01.18
  • 3 Min Read

It’s no secret that data and analytics have earned their place within the marketing landscape as one of the most vital components to clients and their businesses. With these tools being used to indicate ROI and even business forecasting, it’s important that the data is not only accessible to all stakeholders but also presented in a digestible way.

Over the past year, L&S has worked closely with the South Dakota Department of Tourism to provide Quarterly Insight emails. Sent to all members of the South Dakota travel industry, the emails highlight results and travel indicators, sharing the travel forecast for the current and upcoming seasons. To indicate travel propensity for the upcoming year, content within the emails is guided by a variety of factors including revenue, hotel occupancy, tax and gaming revenue, flight bookings, consumer confidence and metrics such as vacation guide requests and downloads.

While data is an obvious driver of content for the emails, a theme is also incorporated to add a little flair to each quarterly report. Over the past year, themes have ranged from the Wild West to Presidents’ Day and even Star Wars (to ensure the industry was feeling the vibes, we even sent it on May 4th). During the process, the L&S team collaborates with South Dakota Tourism to identify which indicators should be included in the email and also considers potential theme ideas. Once a few themes are selected, headline options are developed to give more life to each concept.

Overall, the emails have been well received by the travel and tourism industry in South Dakota, resulting in strong open rates of over 20% on average. They also received the Best Travel Online Newsletter Award at the 2018 Internet Advertising Competition for Outstanding Achievement in Internet Advertising.

With fun animations and gifs, each email is a treat for our stakeholders as it holds important information about the travel season paired with fun copy and design. The project has been a great collaboration between South Dakota Tourism and L&S. We’ve managed to be transparent with the industry, while also keeping true to the playfulness of the South Dakota’s brand.

Our takeaways? In a collaborative process, data can be fun and accessible to all.