TRIPS by Levone

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									Montana Warm Season
Television Conversion Study

Executive Summary January 2003

Purposes and Methodology

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Measure Effectiveness of Montana’s Advertising Campaign (visit or plan to visit Montana).
Profile Montana Visitors (demographics, visitor patterns, trip purpose, transportation, travel party composition, accommodations, spending). Image of Montana. Influence of Montana Information on Decision to Visit and Behavior Once There. Telephone Data Collection: 406 Respondents: 100 Interviews Each of Four Major Census Regions, Weighted to Reflect True Population Proportions.
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Demographics and Travel Patterns

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Montana Visitors = Slightly Upscale Compared to Non-Visitors
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Slightly higher median incomes ($55,000 vs. $52,000). More education (44% college grads vs. 33%). Somewhat older (58 vs. 51) and less likely to have children at home (35% vs. 40%). In comparison, total U.S. leisure travelers (from NFO Plog Research’s annual syndicated study, The American Traveler Survey) are younger (48), tend to earn more ($57,400), represent fewer college grads (37%), and have similar household compositions.

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Montana Visitors = Slightly Upscale Compared to Non-Visitors
Montana Inquirers Inquirer: Montana Visitor Age Income % College Grad. % Children in Household 58 $53,700 44% 35 Inquirer/ Traveler: NonMontana Visitor 51 $51,800 33% 40 U.S. Traveler (ATS*) 48 $57,400 37% 39

*NFO Plog Research’s American Traveler Survey

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Visitor Origin
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Inquirers from the West are more likely to visit than those from other regions. Most visitors consider Montana as their primary vacation destination (not shown).
Travel to Montana (Q4, Q5)
Base (406) Travel Patterns in Past 12 Months
Proportion of Region Inquirers Traveling to/thru Montana NE (13%) South (24%)
No Montana Travel 61% Any Montana Travel 28%

Central (30%)

West (46%)

No Travel 100+ Miles 11%

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Effect of Information

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Influence of Information to Visit
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Of those that inquired for information about Montana, 28% actually visited Montana.
Of the 28% of inquirers that visited, 7% report that the information they received influenced their decision to visit Montana.
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18% report the information influenced them to lengthen their stay in Montana

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Gross/ Net Inquiry Conversion
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Overall, the information positively influences 25% of visitors -- either to travel to Montana (7%) or to stay longer (18%).
Inquiry/ Advertising Conversion (Q7-10)
Base: Total Inquirers/ Visitors
Total # Inquirers % of Inquirers % of Visitors

BASE: Total Sample 406 Total Visited (Regardless of Information) 113 Visited, Decision Made Without Influence from Information 105 Visited, Recall Receiving Information 98 Information Influenced Decision to Travel 8 Information Influenced a Longer Stay 20 Gross Conversion (Caused to Visit or Lengthened Stay) Net Conversion (Caused to Visit) 28 8

100% 28 26 24 2 5 7 2

100% 93 87 7 18

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*Percentages may not sum to 100 due to rounding 11

Image of Montana

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Image of Montana
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Visitors and non-visitors alike consider natural beauty, mountains, and open spaces as dominant images of the state.
Image: Montana Vacation (Q23)
Base: All Respondents (406) / Visitors (113)
36% 45% 28% 23% 20% 19% 15% 15% 12% 11% 12% 11% 9% 10%
Total Inquirers Montana Visitors

Natural Beauty/ Scenery Mountains Open Spaces Rivers & Lakes Fishing Calm/ Relaxing Natural Sites/ Parks

Wildlife Fresh Air Camp/ RV Hike/ Walk Hunting Family/ Friends Historic Sites

10% 7% 9% 7% 8% 7% 8% 6% 6% 6% 6% 6% 6% 6%

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About the Montana Visit

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Trip Characteristics
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Most visitors are here to sightsee (25%). Friend/family event (21%) ranks second. Relaxation/escape (14%) and recreation/activities (13%) are other popular reasons to visit.

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Most PI TV warm season inquirers visit in the summer (65%) or fall (23%).
Visitors usually travel in pairs (61%), without children (77%).
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Transportation to Montana
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Depending on distance from Montana, most drive there (68%), especially Midwesterners. Air travel is an option for many in the Northeast and South.
Mode of Transportation to Montana (Q13)
Base: Total Northeast Central South West 113 7 31 39 37 Car 68% 58 87 54 68 Air 21% 42 7 38 13 Other 11% 0 6 8 19

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Accommodations in Montana
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Averaging 4.5 nights per visit, Montana visitors typically stay in a hotel/motel. Campgrounds rank as a distant second-place, but this is more frequently an option for those living in the West.
Accommodations in Montana (Q17)
80% 60% 40% 20% 0%
Hotel/ Motel Campground/ RV Friend/Relative Home

Total

West

South

Central

Northeast

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Spending Per Day on Montana Trip
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Excluding the transportation costs of getting to Montana, visiting travel parties estimate they spend $360 per day, varying somewhat by region.
Spending Per Day by Category (Q18)
Base (113): Visited Montana in Past 12 Months
Total ($360) West ($323) South ($349) Central ($414) Northeast ($372) 0%
MT Transportation

25% 29% 26% 17% 31% 25%
Lodging

20% 21% 16% 22%

16% 17%

13% 13%

22% 18%

4% 2% 5% 5%

12% 18% 23% 50%

13% 15% 27%

29% 22%

4% 11% 4% 100%
Shopping Other/ Misc.

75%

Dining/Food

Parks/ Entertainm ent

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Visitor Value to Montana
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On average, each visiting travel party is worth about $1,620 -$360 per day x 4.5 days per visit.
Spending in Montana (Q14, 15, 18)
Total Northeast Central South West

$ Per Day Avg. # Days Total Visitor Value

$360 4.5 $1,620

$372 5.2 $1,934

$414 4.3 $1,780

$349 4.7

$323 4.4

$1,640 $1,421

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Satisfaction/ Plans to Return

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Satisfaction/ Likely to Return
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As a vacation destination, Montana nearly universally satisfies visitors. As a result, the vast majority (92%) expect to come back again.
Satisfaction/ Likely to Return (Q19, Q20)
98% 92% 98% 92% 100% 92% 100% 93% 92% 92%

Total

West Net Satisfied

South

Central

Northeast

Net Likely to Return
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Non-visitors: Reasons for Not Visiting and Future Plans

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Reasons to Not Visit Montana
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Inquirers who did not visit Montana fall into two groups - nontravelers and travelers who did not visit Montana. Non-travelers usually cite lack of time (51%), financial (49%), or illness/personal problem (40%) for not traveling -- reasons unrelated to the destination. Montana non-visitors were most likely to simply choose some other destination (56%), followed by a lack of time (51%) and preference for someplace closer (13%).

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Contributing Reasons to Not Visit Montana
Contributing Reasons to Not Travel or Not Visit Montana (Q21)
Base: Non-Travelers (47)/ Non-Visitors (246)
Visited Someplace Else No Time for Trip Prefer Closer Location Financial Reason Did Not Receive MT Info Illness/Problem Air Travel Cost Air Travel Hassles MT=Not Appealing 17% 17% 16% 26% 9% 11% 5% 9%
Non-MT Visitors Non-Travelers

56% 13% 51% 51% 30% 13% 27% 49% 26% 40%

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Non-Visitors’ Future Plans for Montana
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Four out of five non-visitors state that they will definitely/ probably visit Montana in the next two years. Like past visitors, most expect to visit in Summer (57%) or Fall (26%).
Plans to Visit Montana Within Two Years (Q22)
Base (248): Took Trip, Did Not Visit Montana in Past 12 Months
Net Definitely/ Probably Will

Total West South Central Northeast
0%

17% 35% 12% 15% 21% 25%
Definitely Will

63% 46% 64% 74% 59% 50%
Probably Will

15% 5% 16% 21% 4% 4%

80% 80% 76% 89% 80%

7% 4% 13% 75%
NET Will Not

8% 100%

Undecided

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Lewis & Clark Attractions

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Interest in Lewis & Clark Attractions
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While on a Montana vacation, more than four out of five (84%) express interest in visiting a Lewis & Clark attraction.

Interest in Lewis & Clark Attractions (Q26)

Probably 45% Not Interested 12% Definitely 39% Unsure 4%
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Summary/ Implications from Current Research

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Strengths/ Opportunities
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Based on a sample of inquirers, who have enough interest in Montana to request more information, visitors and non-visitors alike are very much aware of Montana’s beauty, mountains, open spaces, rivers, and lakes.

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Montana not only provides a high level of satisfaction to visitors, but it fosters desire for a return visit.
High scores on satisfaction and intent to return suggest good word-of-mouth advertising probably occurs. Plus, it also implies that visitors “get what they expect” -- Montana’s image and advertising appears “on-target.” Montana’s location is both a strength and an opportunity. Most travelers do not “just pass through” to somewhere else, so it misses the incidental benefits of that type of travel. However, people tend to stay several days (average 4.5 days) when they do visit.

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Strengths/ Opportunities (cont’d)
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Inquiry information has its strongest influence by encouraging a longer stay.

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These measures of inquirers understate the impact of promotions and advertising. They represent only a portion of the people who observe the advertising and who may have other positive reactions besides calling for more information, such as: deciding to visit without getting information, lengthening an already planned trip, adding the destination as a possible place to visit in the future, encouraging others to go there, or another positive result. Just the ability to recall the ad suggests some impact and interest.

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This study will be available at:
travelmontana.state.mt.us

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