Kelly Schulz
504-566-5045 / 504-421-0962 cell

Mary Beth Romig
504-566-5050 / 504-606-8430 cell


CVB Officials Introduce 2007 Marketing/Sales Initiatives and “Forever New Orleans” Branding
and Advertising Campaign

CVB Also Announces Production of “A Whole New Orleans,”
a Travel Television Show Celebrating the City’s Culture, Traditions and History

NEW ORLEANS – Jan. 25, 2007 - The New Orleans Convention and Visitors Bureau is launching an aggressive, strategic marketing, public relations and direct sales campaign, designed to celebrate its authentic culture, lure domestic and international visitors back, preserve the city’s leading industry (hospitality) and overcome misperceptions about New Orleans among consumers.

The campaign includes:

· “Forever New Orleans” is an international branding campaign marking a major shift in New Orleans hospitality marketing. The Forever New Orleans campaign not only promotes more aspects of New Orleans culture, including the visual arts; it develops a deeper, richer understanding of our culture as unique and authentic, celebrating the very life of New Orleans.

· A new series of advertisements to be used in outdoor and print campaigns. Using headlines such as “New Orleans is Open. To Just About Anything.”, “Soul is Waterproof’”, “Old World, New Promise” and other phrases, the advertising campaign is designed to celebrate a spirit of swagger, showcasing the hospitality industry’s confidence in New Orleans as a destination, and appealing to the meetings industry, travel trade professionals and the traveling public.

· A 12-month outdoor campaign was introduced in 18 major markets across the country in mid-December celebrating these new messages. Forty-four billboards worth a value of $3 million were donated to New Orleans by CBS Outdoor, through the generosity of Brian Cuyler, general manager CBS Outdoor, New Orleans, and his colleagues throughout the U.S.

· “A Whole New Orleans”: The CVB is underwriting the production of a 30-minute travel television show, “A Whole New Orleans,” showcasing the eclectic nature and vibrant culture of what is still America’s most authentic and historic destination. Its host and executive producer is Karen Carlson, an award-winning broadcast journalist, who has worked at top-rated television stations around the country, including in New Orleans and Los Angeles.

· With a presence in cities such as New York, Chicago, Washington DC, Tokyo, London, Paris and Frankfurt, the CVB staff and representatives are strengthening its long-term relationships and direct sales efforts with influencers such as meeting professionals, corporate and association decision makers, and travel professionals worldwide.

  • Limited Edition Travel Posters: a series of posters will be created to celebrate “Forever New Orleans” and showcase the artwork of local and regional artists. It will be made available to travel agents worldwide. Proceeds will benefit artists in New Orleans.

· The CVB also has engaged an international public relations firm to promote New Orleans as a top destination by showcasing New Orleans in major cities across the United States in a way that will highlight the city’s history and culture. Further details, including the identity of the firm, will be unveiled in coming weeks.

Tourism is big business for New Orleans. As the economic engine of New Orleans, tourism accounts for 35 percent of the City of New Orleans’ annual operating budget - $210 million paying for jobs, safety, transit, and infrastructure. Tourism also employs the largest segment of the population from across the region.

Without the money engineered by New Orleans tourism, the state would have to raise an additional $3,000 on every family in Louisiana in taxes to cover the deficit. In the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, New Orleans lost more than $2 billion in business from business and leisure travelers.

Stephen Perry, President and CEO of the New Orleans Metropolitan Convention and Visitors Bureau made today’s announcement along with leaders of the city and state’s hospitality industry and Lt. Governor Mitch Landrieu. The press conference was held at the Sheraton New Orleans Hotel, set against the backdrop of the French Quarter, showcasing the heart of the city’s tourism corridor.

“We need to remind the world that New Orleans is a place where culture bubbles up from the street, where when you wake up and look around, you realize you are in a place that is truly unique and authentic, a place where your molecules get rearranged,” said Perry. “Our marketing campaign is ultimately about New Orleans being a great place to live, work and visit. We must fill our hotels, have our restaurants brimming with diners, ensure that our galleries, shops and boutiques from the French Quarter to Magazine Street are filled with eager customers, our wonderful museums and attractions are busy with visitors, our artists creating and our musicians playing, and our festivals and special celebrations reporting record attendance,” said Perry.

Perry acknowledged the continued leadership of Lt. Governor Mitch Landrieu in spearheading the state’s tourism efforts, particularly in the last 17 months.

“What the CVB is accomplishing in its marketing, sales and public relations efforts certainly compliments our message that encompasses all of Louisiana - that when you visit our great state, and specifically this great city - New Orleans - you've come to a place like no other, a place that is truly special” said Lt. Governor Mitch Landrieu. “The crucial step in the plan is getting that message to the world. This is why I am working diligently, with the support of the CVB and the other leaders of the state's hospitality industry, to impress upon the state and federal government the absolute importance of increasing federal funding to support the marketing efforts necessary to get the job done. We continue to seek full funding of our $115 million request for tourism marketing.”

Perry also reinforced that the CVB will continue to work with other prominent business organizations to rebuild an even stronger New Orleans, dissolve myths that continue to persist about the city’s state of recovery and deliver credible messages that illustrate the vibrancy of the New Orleans experience today.

The first season of “A Whole New Orleans” will focus on the greater New Orleans area with episodes celebrating what’s new, as well as showing how some of the older establishments and great traditions are evolving. Joining Karen Carlson are Dave Weber and Duane Prefume of Digital Bayou HD Productions, Louisiana’s first high-definition production company and the creators of Emmy and Telly Award winning productions. To preview an episode, visit

The New Orleans Metropolitan Convention & Visitors Bureau ( is the driving force behind New Orleans' most important industry, tourism, which generates $5 billion in visitor spending and creates 85,000 jobs. Today the cultural riches, sensual indulgences and unparalleled service that define the New Orleans experience continue to flourish, as they have for centuries. The most celebrated and historic core of the city - including the French Quarter, Central Business District, Warehouse and Arts District, Magazine Street and Garden District - not only remains intact, both physically and spiritually, but is thriving. The New Orleans CVB is proudly welcoming visitors and business travelers every day.

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