Visit Pensacola has shared a report by its marketing partner, Showcase Pensacola, that is based on COVID-19-related industry research.
“We want to share this with our stakeholders to help you understand what’s happening in the travel space,” wrote interim Visit Pensacola CEO Jack Brown in his weekly email. “More importantly, having this information helps us work together as we move forward.”
The report shared some stats:
* 84% of travelers say they’ve changed their travel plans in the next six months. 53% indicate they’ve canceled completely. 22% of travelers who changed their plans shifted from fly to drive destinations.
* Search for future Pensacola hotel stays is down more than 50% at least until November.
* Travel spending is down 85% nationally and down 89% in Florida.
But the most interesting discussion was on the phases of the COVID-19 reaction:
From the report: “Social listening across the US indicates phases of COVID-19 reaction: We’ve progressed through Denial, Unease, Panic, are currently in Quarantine and expect to move into Frustration and Division.”
Frustration is described as: “Regulation of quarantine measures causes frustration over people’s daily activities and lifestyle.”
Division: “As activity picks up and cases decrease, division occurs over social regulations.”
I see and hear frustration locally, especially with several of the state and federal loan and grant programs running out of money so quickly. In the coming week, I expect that we will see division become more evident as government leaders work on how we will roll out of the governor’s executive orders that were put in place to mitigate the spread of the virus.
County government will need to improve its communications – sharing more facts and relevant information without political spin and hold press briefings. And create a means for the public to weigh in-something more than emails or social media.
Decisions made behind closed doors and away from the media and public are rarely good—and often only serve the needs of a few.
Click here to view the Marketing Trends report.