Each year, the cities of Sikeston and Miner submit Cooperative Marketing Projects to the State of Missouri to aid in their efforts of marketing the two cities. The state's Cooperative Marketing Program will match our advertising dollars 50 percent. This is a very tedious process, but well worth the efforts.
In order to apply, we must complete the FY2003 summary reports and submit them to the Missouri Division of Tourism. In these reports, we justify the allocations from the Division by calculating our visitors' demographics and successes of our advertising.
We have submitted our FY2004 reimbursements to the state for the first quarter and allocations should be coming in during this month. We have written an application for the FY2005 Cooperative Marketing Program, and if approved, we will receive around $13,700 to aid us in our marketing efforts.
Budgets have been set for FY2004 October through September. This year, we will be budgeting around $36,000 for marketing and advertising. We have earmarked these monies to market our cities to leisure travelers, meeting planners and tour group leaders.
Our advertising dollars have been allocated to the following:
* The 2004 Vacation Planner for Missouri, which is a must for us. This magazine reaches over 525,000 readers. Hundreds of thousands of potential visitors who call the state's 800 number or visit their Web site, are mailed a copy of the planner. It is also distributed at sport and travel shows, as well as state tourist information centers throughout Missouri.
* Other tabloids and magazines which will get our message out to potential travelers this year are The Preprint Spring Issue, The Group Leader Magazine, AAA Midwest Traveler, AAA Home and Away Illinois and Indiana issues. In these issues, we are targeting the "snowbirds" just letting them know that we are right on their way as they are heading south for the winter with over 700 hotel rooms, 50 restaurants and lots of southern hospitality.
* We will also be advertising in the AAA Southern Traveler. * Our plans to participate in Group Leaders of America shows will allow us to target group leaders. We will attend these shows in Indianapolis, Cincinnati, Chicago, and St. Louis. At the American Bus Marketplace in New York, we will focus on the motor coach marketer. At the Missouri Expo 2004 in St. Louis we will promote our meeting facilities and also week-end getaways for shopping, golf, events, festivals and historical and cultural tours.
However, on the home front, we would like to take a moment from our busy schedule to wish everyone a very merry Christmas and happy New Year.