Adrian Awards 2023
Goals: Clearly state your marketing goals. What did you strive to achieve using this piece or program?
The relationship between Hilton Head Island and the Gullah community is a treasured one across Lowcountry. As such, the Hilton Head Island-Bluffton Chamber of Commerce/Visitor & Convention Bureau (HHI) wanted to dedicate time in their PR calendar to raise awareness for the Gullah community, culture, as well as preserve their history and traditions for future generations. As such, the goals for this task included: -Shine a critical spotlight on the Gullah community, and its treasured traditions passed down from generation to generation of Gullah Geechee, by securing one (1) feature story with a top tier travel publication. -Identify a journalist with a deep interest in educational press trips and curate an immersive itinerary that would bring them into the Gullah community through taste, touch, education, and more -While on island, coordinate 1:1 visits between key members of the Gullah community and the journalist that will provide impactful storytelling, thus providing endless inspiration for a feature story to be shared across multiple platforms post-trip
Results: Which of your original goals did you achieve and how? How did you measure the effectiveness of the piece or campaign? Entrants should provide quantifiable results of their tactics or campaigns. (for example, click through rates or ad equivalency)
-The team identified the ideal outlet and journalist, Bridgette Bartlett Royall with Travel + Leisure, who accepted the press trip on behalf of the top tier travel publication. -A custom itinerary was created to highlight the heart of Gullah culture and heritage which included a tour of Historic Mitchelville Freedom Park, a 33 acre reserve where the first self-governed town of formerly enslaved people was founded, as well as lunch with Bridgette and Carolyn Grant, co-authors of the history book “Gullah Days: Hilton Head Islanders Before the Bridge,” to talk about culture and history over a traditional West African meal. -After four days of educational experiences and enlightening conversations, the journalist returned home inspired by stories of the Gullah Community, which led to a long form feature piece for Travel + Leisure, published in both online (UVM: 2,839,511) and print (Circulation: 1,019,148) - thus almost doubling the reach of the story across two mediums. Furthermore, the story was published timed to the beginning of Black History Month (Feb 2023 Issue; Feb. 1, 2023 online), aligning our story with a critical moment for audiences looking to educate themselves. -Soundbites from her story include: “As he [Emory Campbell, author of “Gullah Cultural Legacies”] waited for his order of fish and sweet potatoes, I asked him to share one thing he wants people to know about Mitchelville. “We’re connected by kinship,” he said. “You know your fifteenth cousin here.” Although he and I have no blood relations, his response reminded me that all humans share a connection. I felt a deep sense of pride on the island, a feeling that I think many Black Americans rarely experience while traveling in the United States, especially below the Mason-Dixon Line. I know I will return to Mitchelville one day with my son. He deserves to have this awesome feeling, too.”
Return on Investment: How much revenue has the piece or campaign generated and how does this compare to your goal? What was the return on investment?
The fee associated was part of Hilton Head Island-Bluffton Chamber of Commerce/Visitor & Convention Bureau’s annual public relations budget and included as part of the ongoing PR efforts.
Please select a budget range for actual budget including any agency fees.
Entry Title
Travel + Leisure - Charmed by the Hilton Head Island Gullah Community
Public Relations/Communications - Feature Placement Online or Print Consumer Media
Public Relations/Communications
Entry Award: