May 3, 2002
CW begins summer ad campaign
New television advertisements for Colonial Williamsburg began appearing last month in seven large metropolitan markets—New York, Philadelphia, Baltimore, Washington, D.C., Harrisburg, Pa., and Charlotte and Raleigh in North Carolina. The new commercials, aimed at summer family travelers, are designed to make an emotional connection between viewers and Colonial Williamsburg.
The TV ads picture a father eavesdropping at his young daughter’s bedroom door as she reads a “bedtime story” (philosopher John Locke’s thoughts on government—“borrowed” by George Mason for the Virginia Declaration of Rights) to her collection of stuffed animals. The ad asks the question, “What will your child bring home from vacation?”
The TV ads also are scheduled to appear on selected cable networks—Arts & Entertainment (A&E), the History Channel, Home and Garden Television (HGTV), the Food Network and Cable News Network (CNN). The commercials are designed to build public awareness of Colonial Williamsburg quickly with creative approaches to delivering the foundation’s message and will run through June for the summer campaign.
In addition to the television campaign, Colonial Williamsburg’s new advertising agency—Yesawich, Pepperdine & Brown (YP&B)—developed Colonial Williamsburg advertisements for other media, including magazines, newspapers and the Internet.
“The campaign is a departure from what we have done in the recent past,” said Colonial Williamsburg Company (CWC) President Ned Dunn, who oversees marketing for the organization. “The TV ads indirectly emphasize the importance of Colonial Williamsburg to all Americans and Williamsburg’s role in our nation’s founding, while the print ads employ more ‘direct sell’ techniques intended to get visitors to purchase a specific travel package.”
Under the direction of Dunn, in close cooperation with YP&B, the 2002 campaign is a cooperative initiative that took nearly eight months to develop and involved many areas of the organization, including the Historic Area, Hospitality, Education, Research, Museums, Public Relations and Productions, Publications and Learning Ventures, as well as Marketing. The campaign is being coordinated by Ed Allmann, CWC director of hospitality advertising and public relations, and Phyllis Terrell, CWC director of sales and promotions.
The magazine advertisements target several types of publications, including travel and lifestyle, historical and cultural, seniors and local markets. Magazine advertising can be highly targeted to regional markets, demographics and lifestyles. In addition, magazine ads have a long shelf life and multiple readerships, due to the fact that many magazines are available to many people for months at a time in such places as doctor offices and lobbies of businesses. Colonial Williams-burg ads are appearing in Bon Appetit, Gourmet, National Geographic Traveler, the New Yorker, Travel & Leisure, Travel Holiday, American Heritage, Preservation, Sierra, Smithsonian, AAA World, Travel 50, Washington Post Magazine, Washingtonian, and several national and regional golf publications.
Internet advertising efforts use news and consumer web sites that offer demographic profiles that fit Colonial Williamsburg’s objectives.
Separate marketing efforts this year are aimed at the travel trade (travel agents, etc.) and group tour operators and conference groups.