Although the popular brown signs touting Siesta beach’s 2011 “No. 1 Beach in America” designation may soon disappear, the Siesta Key Village Association is planning to sustain is summer marketing strategy and keep Siesta on the tourism map.
The organization’s board of directors, during a Sept. 4 meeting, voted unanimously to spend $1,200 to help members pay for advertising space in Florida Travel & Lifestyles, a bi-monthly national magazine that has 70% of its distribution outside of the state. According to documents distributed to Village Association members by the magazine’s senior executive, Selma Horowitz, the Village will be featured during the next six months in print and on the Florida Travel website.
SKVA President Russell Matthes asked that members interested in the advertising space contact him so they could begin working on a layout, which would cost $300 for individual businesses. The magazine would group participants on a two-page spread, Horowitz explained.
The move fits neatly into a shift toward marketing the Village, which Matthes said would add more value to the $50 annual membership in the organization. A billboard advertising the Siesta commercial district went up on Bee Ridge Road earlier this year, and 15-second radio commercials have been airing on several local stations this summer.
“We do have dollars in the bank; we do want to promote the Village,” Matthes said. “This would really get us out more nationally.”
In the past, the organization oversaw the firm that performed upkeep in the Village, paying the contractor out of its own pocket, Matthes explained. But with the county taking over fiscal responsibility of Village maintenance, SKVA funds have been freed for other uses, such as advertising. The Village Association had $46,000 available in its budget as of the August monthly meeting.
“It’s a better way to go, in my experience, with advertising, to have a destination page or pages versus a random ad in there,” Matthes said.
The marketing effort started earlier this year was mainly focused on countering the effects of the Siesta Key north bridge rehabilitation project, which requires nightly lane closures. But the decision to use Village Association money for member marketing could signal a major shift in how the organization functions — and attracts new members.
Contact Alex Mahadevan at email@example.com.