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MLB, US Airways Co-Launch Marketing Campaign

Melbourne International (MLB) and US Airways have teamed up to potentially be the largest private marketing investment in Brevard county tourism, with the goal of promoting the Space Coast as a destination.

The city of Melbourne and the Space Coast Office of Tourism have partnered with the airline, which resumed daily flights to Melbourne fewer than six months ago, as part of a six-month campaign that combines nearly $200,000 in local dollars with a more than 2-to-1 match from US Airways.

“We and US Airways recognize the enormous potential of our new partnership,” says airport Executive Director Richard A. Ennis, “and we’re proving – in dollars and other resources – that this will be a lasting, productive relationship.”

Kevin Jackson, managing director of consumer and partnership marketing for US Airways, says the city already is a popular business and leisure destination, so it only made sense to expand our marketing to the Space Coast.”

“Cooperative marketing has long been successful for both US Airways and our partners,” he says.

And Space Coast Office of Tourism Executive Director Rob Varley agreed, saying the project could bring in thousands of new visitors.

“US Airways is opening new markets and generating positive economic development for the Space Coast,” he says. “They are a much welcomed and valuable new asset to the Space Coast travel industry.”

The campaign mixes print, e-mail, online and in-flight advertising to reach a broad spectrum of travelers. The Space Coast Office of Tourism will contribute $99,475 and the city of Melbourne, $100,000.

US Airways is also offering 1,000 bonus miles in its frequent-flier Dividend Miles program for coach travel and 2,000 for first-class travel to and from its hub in Charlotte, N.C. Travel must be booked by Aug. 1 for travel between now and Sept. 1 to qualify.

 “These bonus miles are expected to be a major draw for business travelers,” Ennis says.

The campaign geo-targets online marketing vehicles to reach the Boston, Mass.; New York City, N.Y.; Washington, D.C.; Baltimore, Md.; and Charlotte markets.
The local funding is in addition to the $500,000 in marketing that was approved by the Melbourne Airport Authority in April. Officials say, however, that earlier commitment helped spur the deal.

 “I believe the board’s action to approve the additional $500,000 in April was recognized as the airport’s continuing commitment to invest in airlines serving Melbourne,” Ennis says. “We invest in them, and they invest in us. That’s the foundation of a great partnership.”

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