June 2014 Newsletter

Louise Stanton-Masten

Staff Changes at the WTA Sarah Winter, WTA finance and operations manager left the WTA last week and is at home awaiting the birth of her first baby later this month. Sarah joined the WTA in January of 2013 and has been an important part of our team. We sent her off with our congratulations and best wishes, and are anxious to hear from her about the arrival of baby girl Winter. I’m pleased to introduce our new WTA operations manager, Diana Rutledge. Diana has been here at the WTA for the past several weeks, working with Sarah and becoming fully engaged in all the details of the position. Diana comes to us with great experience having worked in an administrative capacity for a non-profit organization and a degree in communications. Originally from New Mexico, Diana attended schools in Alabama and Washington D.C. and has been here in Washington State for the past 5 years. Diana says that she loves traveling and exploring all the wonderful destinations Washington State has to offer. Please add Diana to your contacts and look for WTA emails from her in the future. Her email is Diana@watourismalliance.com and her phone number is 206.484.8898.


At the June 16 gate ceremony, Port of Seattle and Delta Air Lines representatives cut the ribbon on new non-stop international service from Sea-Tac airport to Hong Kong prior to departure of the first flight. WTA staff Louise Stanton-Masten and Mike Moe joined Jane Kilburn, WTA Board member and Port of Seattle Director of Tourism Development, and other dignitaries for the event, which included a dance by the Mak Fai Lion Dance Team accompanied by Chinese drummers. This month the WTA was pleased to attend events at Sea-Tac airport celebrating Delta Air Lines inaugural services from Seattle-Tacoma International Airport to Seoul, Korea and Hong Kong, China. With the launch of non-stop service from Sea-Tac to Seoul on June 2nd and to Hong Kong on June 16th, Seattle travelers now have direct access to nine international destinations from Sea-Tac airport served by Delta Air Lines.

Mike Medeiros, Seattle Delta Vice President, took the opportunity in his comments to announce that as Delta has built up its Seattle hub it is serving passengers from all over the world to connect with destinations throughout the U.S. According to Delta, the Hong Kong service is Delta’s fifth new international destination from Seattle in the past year. In opening remarks Port of Seattle Commission Co-President Courtney Gregoire said “As one of the largest economic engines in our region, Sea-Tac Airport’s connection with Hong Kong means business for our region, jobs for our workers and choices for the traveling public.” According to the Port of Seattle, in 2013, Sea-Tac saw international passenger traffic increase by 10 percent over the previous year, and in total the airport served more than 34.7 million passengers. Sea-Tac currently has 19 intercontinental nonstop services to six cities in Asia (Beijing, Hong Kong, Seoul, Shanghai, Taipei and Tokyo), five cities in Europe (Amsterdam, Frankfurt, London, Paris, and Reykjavik) and Dubai. Service additions in 2014 are flights by Delta to London, Seoul, and Hong Kong. The WTA congratulates the Port of Seattle and Delta Air Lines in these milestone accomplishments.


Mak Fai Lion Dance Team

Snohomish County Introduces New Marketing Campaign After Oso Landslide 
Living anywhere in the country you would have heard the news. Closer to home we better understand the horrendous impact of the landslide in Oso. BrandQuery, the marketing and branding agency hired by Snohomish County Economic Development to create a promotional campaign to help in the economic recovery of the region, has just launched their multi-faceted media campaign to target those who enjoy the outdoors and get visitors back to the Stillaguamish Valley. The Stillaguamish Valley offers world-class outdoor recreation: rafting, hiking, climbing, biking, and camping. Outdoor experiences in the Stilly Valley are easy to access for all levels of enthusiasts, from beginning to expert, including those who want an entry point to incredible backcountry. BrandQuery chose the imagery of stone cairns as the icon prevalent in the campaign. This iconography was chosen based on responses they received from the community and is used as a metaphor for wayfinding, navigating and finding a sense of place. Working under the direction of BrandQuery, the Bellingham video production firm Hand Crank Films captured the best of the outdoor recreation experience; camping, biking, hiking, rafting and climbing, all with the cairn in place. Check out the commercial here. Under BrandQuery, Strategic Media Alignment placed 15 second and 30 second versions of the VisitStillyValley commercial on KOMO and KING television within the Greater Seattle market and Global Network in Canada. All stations began airing the spots on June 16th. BrandQuery is directing the public relations firm Strategies 360 in the social media effort for the Stilly Valley. Social Media (https://www.facebook.com/visitstillyvalley) is also paramount to the success of the campaign and allows up-to-the minute updates on access issues needed to navigate through the slide zone. It also expands the ability to promote individual events and attractions the broadcast spots could not cover. Check out the commercial – give a “like” and “share” to the VisitStillyValley Facebook page, and follow @StillyValley on Twitter. This small gesture will help others discover the possibilities in this resilient and beautiful community.
Visit Seattle recently announced a new national travel advertising campaign to promote Seattle as a destination for LGBTQ marriage. The Marry Me in Seattle campaign will appear in national LGBTQ travel and lifestyle media and include an innovative sweepstakes for engaged couples to win hosted trips and weddings in the Emerald City – and a chance to be married by Seattle’s first openly gay mayor, Ed Murray.

The campaign and wedding sweepstakes, which begin July 1, were developed in collaboration with Visit Seattle’s agency Copacino + Fujikado, in partnership with Here Media and with funding by the Seattle Tourism Improvement Area, a dedicated marketing fund assessed from guests at 54 downtown Seattle hotels and administered by Visit Seattle.

Four wedding trips to Seattle will be awarded and Visit Seattle will host and coordinate all travel and wedding ceremony logistics.

Click here for the full Visit Seattle press release.




USA Today is the nation’s number one newspaper in print circulation with an average of more than 1.6 million daily, and the leader in mobile applications with more than 16 million downloads on mobile devices.
Washington State’s Whidbey Island is one of the best islands to visit in the United States, according to the readers of one national news organization. Whidbey Island placed third in the “Best U.S. Island” by readers of USA Today, earning it a 10Best Readers’ Choice Travel Award. A panel of experts picked the nominees, leaving the public to vote for their favorite U.S. island during the month of May. Whidbey Island trailed only the U.S. territory of Puerto Rico, which placed first, and Mackinac Island in Michigan. No other island in Washington state was nominated. Nominees were rated on several categories including beauty, culture, and accessibility. Washington State Ferries and the picturesque Deception Pass Bridge easily transport visitors daily to Whidbey Island. A complete list of the winners may be found at or  http://www.10best.com/awards/travel/best-u-s-island/ 

BEST WESTERN AND WTA PROMOTE WASHINGTON GOLF COURSES USING PINTEREST  The WTA and Best Western Hotels of Washington continue to use Pinterest to promote the beautiful golf courses of Washington State. To participate in this creative campaign, submit images of golf courses in your community. You must own the pictures you provide or have permission to post them. Best Western will work to get consent by giving a photo credit or purchasing the image. Please contact Rebecca Roth at Rebecca.Roth@bestwestern.com for more information or to send your images.

Thank you for helping to promote Washington State!


This summer the Washington Tourism Alliance will once again be teaming up with the Super Bowl Champion Seattle Seahawks for the 12 Tour! We will be traveling to beautiful locations all throughout Washington. This will be your opportunity to meet the players, the Sea Gals, get autographs and participate in their Gatorade Youth Camp. You can see the full Seahawk 12 Tour Schedule here. You can follow the 12 Tour on the ExperienceWA website as Seahawk players visit not-to-be-missed locations in our beautiful state.
South End Zone



Did you know that every tourism related business in Washington is entitled to a listing on the ExperienceWA website, www.experiencewa.com? If you are not listed on the website, please contact Mike Moe, WTA Director of Business Development and Media Sales at mike@watourismalliance.com.

To further maximize your presence on the site, check out all the new advertising options available on the site here.

For information on supporting tourism promotion in Washington State by linking your website to the ExperienceWA website, click here.





SUBMIT YOUR STORIES Want to brag about something your destination was recently recognized for? Have news that impacts Washington State tourism? Please add the WTA to your distribution news list! We’re always looking for story ideas for the WTA monthly newsletter! To submit a story idea, email Louise Stanton-Masten at louise@watourismalliance.com.