Discover Lehigh Valley® shares big wins in its fiscal year annual report.
Discover Lehigh Valley®, the destination marketing organization (DMO) dedicated to promoting tourism in Pennsylvania’s Lehigh and Northampton counties, today announced the region again remained first in hotel occupancy rates among competing Pennsylvania DMOs according to 2021-2022 Smith Travel Research. The news was shared at Discover Lehigh Valley’s board meeting with key stakeholders, providing insights on how the organization’s momentum and nimble marketing strategy is helping the group to continue navigating and finding opportunity both coming out of the pandemic and while inflation continues to threaten travel.
“The signs show that travel is back and stronger than ever and we're looking forward to another record-setting year welcoming more visitors to the region,” said Alex Michaels, president and CEO for Discover Lehigh Valley. “As our organization continues to promote the region as a must-visit destination, we’ve seen impressive hotel occupancy rates which in turn translated to $2.87 million in revenue from local hotel taxes. Our annual findings continue to show strength in Lehigh Valley tourism and we’re looking forward to what’s to come.”
To further showcase the organization’s outstanding efforts and impressive metrics, Discover Lehigh Valley released a dynamic 2021-2022 recap video and report. Key Lehigh Valley travel and tourism annual statistics include:
Average daily rate reached a new high for the region at $113.26
Overnight visitors reached 16.1 million, up 28.6% from 2020
Total visitor spending was $1.1B
Biggest ad campaigns were launched, in cooperation with VisitPA
Earned 710 media placements in top outlets including Fodor’s Travel, MSN, Thrilist, Washingtonian, Real Simple, Wine Traveler, AAA Living, Metro Philadelphia, and more
Garnered over 41.6 million earned media impressions
Secured over 2.5 million pageviews on DiscoverLehighValley.com
Organic visitors to the site was 61%
Welcomed 2,000 cyclists to the region
“As travel restrictions lifted, potential visitors from our key markets of New York, Washington, D.C., Baltimore, and Philadelphia metros sought experiences and connection through travel again in drivable destinations,” said Alicia Quinn, Vice President of Marketing & Strategic Alliances. “Lehigh Valley is positioned very well for these urban dwellers looking to escape the hustle and bustle of the major metropolitan cities and retreat to our open space, agritourism, and charming downtowns, while easing back into festivals, sporting events, and what is an arts & cultural haven.”
Advertising campaigns such as ‘Happy Farmers, Happy Cyclists’, ‘See How Lehigh Valley Does Festivals’ (running again in 2022-23), and ‘Elevating a Night Out’ were integrated through Cable TV, Video Streaming (Roku & Apple TV), Programmatic Video and Pre-Roll on YouTube, Digital Billboards, Digital Ads, Public Relations, and Social Media channels. Supporting the ad messaging as the call to action, Discover Lehigh Valley also launched a redesigned and award-winning website (two website awards), inspired by real experiences and insider’s information.
At the meeting, the DMO also recognized its retiring Director of Finance, Ed Eppler. Ed served the organization for the past 10 years, seeing the organization through a number of changes and the growth of its annual operating budget.
In addition, outgoing board members were recognized for their service and support to the organization, including Joan Hanscom, then Executive Director of Valley Preferred Cycling Center, and Denise Smith, previously the COO of State Theatre Center for the Arts.
For more information on Discover Lehigh Valley’s Annual Meeting and to view the full annual report, visit DiscoverLehighValley.com/AnnualMeeting.
About Discover Lehigh Valley
Discover Lehigh Valley®, the official destination marketing organization of Pennsylvania’s Lehigh and Northampton counties, is dedicated to driving economic growth and strengthening local pride through tourism to the region. Just 60 minutes north of Philadelphia and 90 minutes west of New York City, Lehigh Valley is home to must-see attractions and festivals, world-class sporting events, thrilling outdoor recreation, renowned colleges and universities, and historic sites including Bethlehem, a National Historic Landmark District and nominee on the U.S. Tentative List for World Heritage Designation. Many of America’s favorite brands such as Crayola®, PEEPS®, MIKE AND IKE®, Martin Guitars, Mack Trucks and Olympus reign from Lehigh Valley. Visit DiscoverLehighValley.com and follow @LehighValleyPa.