The Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity (DCEO) is awarding its tourism account to O’Keefe Reinhard & Paul (OKRP) following a state-mandated review.
The incumbent was JWT.
The remit for OKRP includes national marketing that will focus on Chicago as a destination. Regional marketing will concentrate on the entire state. The agency is asked with messaging to more international prospects and will also target business travelers for national conventions and meetings.
Promotion of state parks and historic destinations, like the Miracle Mile, remains a priority.
“We cannot rest on thinking people are already aware of the many great things to see and experience in the state,” says Erin Guthrie, acting director, DCEO. “We need to let people know what Illinois has to offer."
Illinois is ranked sixth in the nation for visitor expenditures. The DCEO expects to boost its visitor spending level moving forward.
In 2017, Illinois had 114 million visitors, with 52% coming from in-state. Chicago remains a strong tourism destination with over 55 million visitors.
The initial term of OKRP's contract runs through June 2022.