Mississippi News

Visit Mississippi Named Winner of National ESTO Award

Visit Mississippi has won a top honor from the U.S. Travel Association for commercials highlighting the state’s culinary, arts, outdoors, and historic attractions.

The state’s “Wanderers Welcome” campaign earned the 2023 Mercury Award for Broadcast Advertising by the association’s Educational Seminar for Tourism Organizations on Tuesday in Savannah, Georgia, during its annual forum. ESTO is a national forum for destination marketing professionals. The ESTO Awards recognize tourism offices and travel destinations in the U.S. for their achievements in destination marketing and promotion. The awards are intended to inspire creativity in the field of destination marketing by highlighting the accomplishments of states and territories with outstanding promotional campaigns.

“Visit Mississippi is doing an excellent job telling our state’s story, so it shouldn’t come as a surprise that they won this award,” said Gov. Tate Reeves. “Mississippi has something for everyone. More and more people are discovering and falling in love with our great state.”

“Tourism is a key component of Mississippi’s economy. Showcasing the many ways visitors can enjoy our local offerings, like unforgettable attractions, experiences and cuisine, can bring even more visitors to the state now and in the years to come,” said MDA Deputy Executive Director Laura Hipp. “We’re very proud of the work being done at Visit Mississippi, and this award will serve as a tangible reminder of just how much Mississippi has to offer our visitors.”

The “Wanderers Welcome” campaign was conceived to illustrate how Mississippi features many unique opportunities and encourage travelers to wander from destination to destination. The campaign was one of nearly 70 throughout the U.S. submitted for a variety of categories in the field.

“There is a great deal of work that goes into a campaign like this, and the recognition of those efforts is a great honor for Mississippi and our team. It also helps that we have so many unique and impressive opportunities to share with visitors to our state,” said Visit Mississippi Director Rochelle Hicks. “We are privileged to have such a diversity of experiences and communities in this state, and this award is a testament to all the hard work that tourism professionals in Mississippi do every day.”

The ETSO Awards cover two programs, the Destiny Awards and Mercury Awards, in categories including Broadcast Advertising, Community Engagement, and Public Relations, among other marketing topics.

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