State and local officials gathered today to unveil "Visit SoSi," a regional tourism brand that invites locals and visitors to take a fresh look at Danville and Pittsylvania County and the abundance of activities and offerings now available.
The fresh new messaging and positioning strategy lean into the region's well-known geographical affiliation with Southside Virginia but also provide a confident, differentiated, and playful new twist highlighting the region's unique personality, rise, and trajectory.
“Danville and Pittsylvania County make up the leading area within the state’s Southern Virginia Tourism District, and we share many attributes with our neighbors and are proud of these affiliations," said Tourism Manager Lisa Meriwether. "But as a community that is making national headlines with our visionary transformation, we are also boldly stepping out in front to reintroduce this region to visitors. This new brand is highlighting the vision, quality of life focus, and world-class asset attraction efforts that have gotten us to this moment."
The strategy, messaging, and designs were the result of a robust nine-month, community-led and data-driven process that included more than 2,000 community surveys, extensive visitor demographic and behavioral research, 16 focus groups, and countless one-on-one community interviews, product visits, and stakeholder conversations.
The research, tourism master plan, and brand concept development efforts were led by Eddy Alexander, an international award-winning full-service marketing and public relations agency that was founded in Roanoke in 2011.
Out of a total of 12 potential design directions, the Visit SoSi concept consistently outperformed all other options and tested exceptionally well with both local and out-of-area participants. Focus group members and interviewees consistently noted that this design direction, messaging, and creativity was "fun," "fresh," "flexible," "appealing," "unique," "approachable," "memorable," and "welcoming."
The corresponding brand strategy is also highly diversified, allowing a consistent package to be used to promote the region's outdoor recreation, food and beverage, lodging, entertainment, art, history, culture, architecture, festivals, events, agritourism and more.
This brand is the first high-profile deliverable under the region’s new tourism master plan published by the City of Danville’s Office of Economic Development and Tourism last week.