Lee County changing its pitch to potential tourists - 96.9 WINK FM

Lee County changing its pitch to potential tourists


There is a plan to move forward and switch focus after Hurricane Ian. The Lee County Visitor and Convention Bureau wants to promote tourism with emotion rather than focus on beautiful pictures of beaches and landscapes.

The bureau will start by selling “Memories” and “Feelings” to people who’ve been here before. They’re going to remind those folks there are exciting downtowns, lots of great food, shopping, and despite the hurricane, wonderful weather.

It’s no secret tourism fuels Lee County’s economy. People come for the white sandy beaches, crystal clear waters, palm trees swaying, and beaches filled with smiling faces.

“We have led with destination imagery because that’s what sells. People see it. They envision them to envision themselves and their family there. And they want to be here,” said Brian Osoky, with the Lee County Visitor and Convention Bureau.

Hurricane Ian changed all that. The clean-up is underway, but Lee County is nowhere close to what it used to be.

So how do you keep people coming?

Osoky said it is simple. You focus on what you do have. “The people who make Lee County what it is.”

At the chamber of commerce luncheon Wednesday, he outlined his plan. He said the marketing begins with the people who have already visited and made memories here. “And we’re going to make sure that they know that we are here and ready to accept them,” said Osoky.

Through advertisements, the goal is to remind those loyal travelers of the special feeling this place has. One you can’t get anywhere else.

“I think this is the year that the downtown Fort Myers area could really stand out. I think this is the year that our nature preserves can really stand out and actually anchor us for tourism this year while we repair the beaches and ultimately give people that long-term experience that they’ve always come to enjoy,” said Lee County Commissioner Brian Hamman.

Hamman is also the president and CEO of the Greater Fort Myers Chamber of Commerce. His message to local businesses is to appeal to people who are already here, especially those helping rebuild.


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