CVB Case Study: Engaging Planners During COVID-19—Explore Branson’s Virtual FAM

Recently, we sat in on Inc.’s webinar, Leading Through Times of Crisis and Change, with motivational speaker/business guru Simon Sinek. Timely (and ever passionate), Simon served up 60 minutes of counsel on how leaders can make an impact on others through difficult times.

One question that landed in the buzzy chat box during the webinar was:

“How can we help others find value in us even in today’s challenging environment?”

‘Simon says’:

Look at your resources and don’t panic.


A few cribbed mantras, copious notes and several head nods later, we left the webinar feeling pretty inspired…and validated, because a couple of weeks prior, we helped our friends at Explore Branson pull off one of their biggest successes of 2020 by doing just that. Read the rundown below to see how it all came about.

First, the Results:

250+ Virtual FAM Tour Registrations
171 Virtual Attendees
1 Qualified RFP (submitted just minutes after the tour!)

So, what was the challenge?
Digital Edge needed to help Explore Branson continue to reach and engage meeting and event planners in a time of reduced to no travel and through the emotional climate of COVID-19. How could we still help our client provide value to their audience?

What was our idea?
We would create an interactive virtual FAM tour to give remote planners from across the country access to explore some of Branson’s top meeting and entertainment offerings. By using a webinar format for the FAM, it would allow the Explore Branson team to present the offerings as they brought the destination to life to an engaged audience of planners.

“We have to be more creative in the way we sell the Branson/Lakes Area now, more than ever before. This first-of-its-kind live virtual event showcasing our destination is being nationally recognized as the new standard to engage planners and attendees, ultimately driving more meetings and conventions to the area.” – Jeff Seifried, President/CEO, Branson CVB.

How did we execute?
As Branson, MO began moving into reopening, their team wanted to host the FAM to celebrate.

That gave us three weeks to execute.

In that short timeframe, our agency developed the creative for the FAM and provided the deliverables for the Explore Branson team to host it. We created all of the marketing materials for the FAM including messaging and content, social media ads, designed email communications, a dedicated landing page, an itinerary outline, and the FAM presentation that was used during the virtual tour.

Through live video on location, live drone videography, and an interconnected team of passionate Branson experts, planners were engaged and educated through real-time information during the one-hour presentation.

This form of “edu-tainment” helped planners learn about the destination remotely as well as interact with the Explore Branson team along the way.

Key Metrics:
500K+ Impressions
1.31% Average Email CTR
40.2% Average Email Open Rate

We helped Explore Branson unleash their creativity, pivot and think outside the box to provide value to planners even during difficult times. We’d love to do the same for you.

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