Puerto Rico destination marketing organization launches new website, logo
SAN JUAN – With an initial investment of $500,000, Discover Puerto Rico, the island’s global destination marketing organization (DMO), launched Thursday a revamped desktop and mobile website that will serve as the platform for visitors looking to vacation, plan a wedding or hold business events such as conventions.
As part of the repositioning of the Puerto Rico brand, the DMO revealed a new logo, whose design was “tested by research and perception studies in our main markets,” Brad Dean, Discover Puerto Rico’s CEO, said referring to New York, Los Angeles, Dallas, Toronto, Chicago, Washington D.C. and Atlanta.
The DMO’s digital marketing director, Liz Mabe, emphasized Thursday that among the main changes for the new site were not only a more attractive design, but also one that makes it more intuitive, with a user-friendly layout and dynamic content that engages visitors.
Dean explained that another important feature of the new site, which is in its first of a three-phase process, is the increased amount of information available, which has been organized as attractions by island region.
To that point, the organization’s chief marketing officer, Leah Chandler, added that for this first phase, between the DMO’s in-house team and its contractors, hundreds of pieces of content and close to 1,000 pictures were produced in 90 days.
Dean recognized that other DMOs would have established a longer process to reveal a new design for their website but that in the case of Puerto Rico, there was a need for an expedited process because, “while for some businesses a website might be transactional, for the DMO, its foundational. For the DMO, the website is where everything starts, and it’s where we build from. The website for a DMO is as important as a kitchen for a restaurant or the newsroom for the media,” he said.
“Beyond a solid technical foundation using current technology and industry best practices for improved content display, site security and search optimization, it also now features an intuitive navigation structure with more than 300 pages of rich, multimedia content covering all regions of Puerto Rico to meet the goal of marketing the entire Island as a tourist destination,” Dean further explained in the DMO’s announcing release.
While the production of content took three months, the general process started eight months ago, with a wave of consumer-focused research, Chandler said. Some of the research conducted focused on the seven key U.S. markets and Canada, as well as on Puerto Ricans living stateside. She added that, stemming from the research, the DMO has begun to build not just the website but the destination’s brand, which she underlined must be distinctive.
“The new articles, videos, an event calendar and additional functionality will be added on a regular basis over the coming months in time for Puerto Rico’s brand re-positioning campaign launching soon. With more in-depth planning information and
direct access to local business, the website aims to inspire consumers to choose Puerto Rico over competing destinations,” she said in the release.
The second phase for the site, which is expected to see a 25 percent rise in visitor traffic compared with the previous one, will launch in April and incorporate a more tailored response. It will be able to personalize the user experience based on information provided, such the location from which the site is being viewed. The site will then provide content from each of the island’s 78 municipalities as well.
The third phase, slated for July, will include elements that result from the information the portal has gathered from users, such as to which languages it should be translated.
The goal, Mabe said, is not just to generate more traffic, but also more usage and engagement from visitors.
The website contains a directory with thousands of companies on the island that offer tourist services and an inventory of tourist attractions. Visitors to the site can explore “where to eat, stay and play, or select targeted categories such as: sports and outdoors activities, history and culture, arts and music, entertainment, events, and more,” the release reads.
The launch of Discoverpuertorico.com comes hand in hand with four workshops the DMO team will hold with members of the hospitality industry from March 25 to 28. These will include teaching businessowners to better manage and edit their own listing on the site, as well as what more information they should include in their Google listings. The details of the workshops will be offered soon, the executives said.
The executives said the new site is an important step in the DMO’s brand repositioning process that will enable Puerto Rico to “fully capitalize on its tourism product offerings and emerge as a leading Caribbean destination.”