I attended my first New Mexico Tourism Commission meeting as a newly appointed commissioner this week, as well as the New Mexico Governor’s Conference on Tourism. The hospitality industry is challenging, but it is also fun and filled with a lot of creative people. We had many successes to celebrate this year, and as Governor Susana Martinez pointed out at the opening of the conference on Monday, for every dollar that was spent on marketing New Mexico to travelers in 2012, three dollars came back to the state coffers. The New Mexico True campaign that was launched last year was a resounding success. How do we know this? Because they said so? No. Through the leadership of Secretary Monique Jacobson and her team at the State Tourism Department, we now have hard data to back up the good feelings we had about the New Mexico True campaign. It worked. It worked so well, and the data collected was so compelling, the New Mexico legislature appropriated an additional $2 million dollars in marketing funds for the Tourism Department – something the industry has long asked for and never received.
So what’s next? Many of you may subscribe to La Fonda’s monthly eNews. (If not, you can sign up here at the bottom of our homepage. If you are already a subscriber, then you are probably familiar with our feature If These Walls Could Speak… It’s a feature we love because we have so many wonderful stories about La Fonda and the events that have happened within these walls over the last 90 years. New Mexico’s history goes back much further than that… and the people who live here and travel here all come away with a story. You’re probably thinking about your own New Mexico story right now…
If so, than I invite you to participate in the next chapter of the New Mexico True Campaign launched this week at the Governor’s Conference. It’s called New Mexico True Stories and it’s all about you. Travel the state this summer, submit your story and you could be one of the weekly winners of a $450 gas card OR the grand prize winner of $5000. If these walls could speak at La Fonda, they would find it hard to pick just one story. I think you will, too!
For complete details on the contest and to enter your New Mexico True Story, visit http://www.newmexico.org/nmtruestories. True Story entries will be accepted through August 4, 2013. Finalist voting ends August 18. If your story happens to include La Fonda, please let me know. We’d love to share your story with all of our friends.