Chris Thompson, Brand USA President, and CEO marked the reunion of the travel community during a press conference at IPW 2021, the industry’s premier annual international inbound travel trade show.
Thompson’s remarks, which were delivered in-person at the Las Vegas Convention Center, celebrated the timely news of the coming international border reopening for fully vaccinated travelers, gave an update on the latest U.S. tourism impacts from COVID-19, and unveiled the next chapter of Brand USA’s award-winning United Stories campaign.
“In light of the administration’s announcement yesterday, I am happy to say that we are ready to welcome the world back to the United States. After being separated for 18 months the world is exhausted, and we know that travel can renew and rejuvenate us. Over the past year and a half, Brand USA has been busy positioning the U.S. and our partners for a quick and robust return to international marketing, and we’re excited to be able to get to that point and lead the next chapter of recovery,” said Chris Thompson, Brand USA President & CEO.
During his presentation, Thompson reflected on the many ways Brand USA is working with, and will continue to support, industry partners as reopening becomes a reality. Brand USA, the official destination marketing organization for international travel to the United States, works in close partnership with the travel industry to maximize the economic and social benefits of travel. Throughout the pandemic, Brand USA has continued to position the United States and its partners for a quick and robust return to market, influencing key aspects of the travel ecosystem with inspirational content, travel trade engagement, public relations, and a groundbreaking virtual B2B platform.
Thompson highlighted specifics around these initiatives which include:
- GoUSA TV – a first-of-its-kind connected TV channel where millions of people around the world travel dreamed as they watched more than 40 million minutes of entertaining and episodic content delivered through expanded streaming partnerships.
- Brand USA Global Marketplace – a custom-built, virtual platform launched in 2020 that provides access to a diverse range of U.S. destinations, attractions, and points of interest for the international travel industry through education sessions, B2B meetings and more.
- Brand USA Travel Week Europe – set for October 25-28 in London, where Brand USA will bring together key players from the U.S. and European travel industry to discuss trends, challenges, and innovations while exploring strategies to drive future visitation to the USA.
Thompson also unveiled Brand USA’s upcoming recovery approach, which builds upon the foundation of the award-winning United Stories campaign and gives voices to real travel experiences within the USA to create authentic, locally relevant, positive engagements with consumers. The latest iteration of the campaign will focus on reconnecting and uniting people through travel to the USA and the great diversity of people, places and experiences that make the United States a dream destination.