Toronto, Ontario – Grey County was recognized for tourism excellence on February 9 at the 60th annual Economic Developers Council of Ontario (EDCO) conference in downtown Toronto. The County received two awards Thursday evening. The County’s Destination Development Action Plan won the Strategic Planning & Initiatives Award for regions with a population 50,000 – 250,000. The County also accepted the Promotional Award for Advertising for its marketing efforts for the #ColourItYourWay 2016 Fall Campaign.
“We’re very proud to be recognized for the work we are doing to attract more visitors to Grey County and increase sustainable tourism for our local industry,” said Grey County Warden Alan Barfoot. “It will be exciting to see the plan to continue to unfold over the next few years.”
Bannikin Travel & Tourism developed the Destination Development Action Plan with guidance from Grey County staff, members of the Tourism Advisory Committee and Regional Tourism Organization 7. This plan focuses on four key pillars: community engagement, destination management, market research and tracking, and resource allocation.
“We had excellent feedback from our industry partners and that really helped bring the Action Plan together,” said Gary Gingras, Chair of the Tourism Advisory Committee. “Now the County is walking the talk by providing regular workshops, familiarization tours and networking events. Enhanced collaboration and improved data are crucial.”
The County also took home the Promotional Award for Advertising for the #ColourItYourWay 2016 Fall Campaign. The campaign generated more than 3.8 million impressions on Facebook driving 66,000 visitors to Grey County’s tourism website (link is external) and increasing the County’s Facebook following by 50%. Media Tours also lead to articles in prominent national news and travel outlets including the National Post. Overall, Grey County tourism businesses had a strong fall season and the fall campaign exceeded goals of increasing visitation and sales.