Dear Friends and Partners,
At Brand USA, we are celebrating our country as a melting pot of cultures and musical treasures with the release of our new giant screen movie, "America’s Musical Journey."
We are excited about our second IMAX film created in partnership with MacGillivray Freeman Films and Expedia, Inc. At our first premiere on February 15 at the Smithsonian Air and Space Museum in Washington, DC, "America’s Musical Journey" received glowing reviews.
Honoring the diverse music and creative risk-taking spirit that characterize America, the film is narrated by Academy Award-winning actor Morgan Freeman and follows Grammy-nominated singer/songwriter Aloe Blacc as he traces Louis Armstrong’s footsteps through the colorful locales where America’s music was born.
In New Orleans, Louisiana; Chicago, Illinois; Detroit, Michigan; New York City, New York; Nashville, Tennessee and Miami, Florida, we meet artists, music makers, storytellers and innovators who are shaping America’s culture today.
The impressive success of our first film, "National Parks Adventure," paved the way for this second film. We are hopeful that it will be as successful. "National Parks Adventure" - an action-packed adventure that took viewers on a spectacular journey through America’s legendary outdoors - became the highest-grossing documentary film of 2016 and was viewed in 119 exhibitions in 16 countries within the first 12 months and received multiple awards. Over four million people internationally are expected to view the film.
These films help us drive interest and travel to the United States; cultivate relationships with our stakeholders; and promote Brand USA as a strong global citizen and as an organization fueling the USA’s economy.
We encourage everyone to see our new musical adventure as well as our first film, which is now available on Netflix. We are proud of these films and what they represent – the remarkable spirit and beauty of this country.
As we work to promote the U.S. abroad, we also invite partners to consider new opportunities to get involved by contacting their Brand USA partner representatives. Here are a few of the initiatives we are focusing on in 2018:
Travel Promotion Act’s Eighth Anniversary
We are celebrating the eighth anniversary of the signing of the Travel Promotion Act which led to the creation of Brand USA as the first public-private partnership to spearhead a global marketing effort to promote the United States as premiere travel destination. We have accomplished much together, growing from a startup with 89 partners to one with 800 partners worldwide.
New Board Members
We are welcoming two new members to the Brand USA’s board of directors - Noel Irwin Hentschel, chairman and chief executive officer of AmericanTours International, and Mike Gallagher, co-founder and co-chairman of CityPASS. John Edman, director of Explore Minnesota Tourism has been reappointed to the board. We also thank the outgoing board members for their hard work - Tom Klein, former president and CEO of Sabre; and Daniel Halpern, CEO and co-founder of Jackmont Hospitality.
Ask A Local
The best people to offer that warm welcome to international visitors are the Americans who have immense pride in their hometowns. Ask A Local - the next evolution of Brand USA’s One Big Welcome marketing program - uses videos to highlight first-person perspectives of local attractions.
Brand USA also is gearing up for sales missions to China, Japan, South Korea and India. Consider these sales missions when planning out the year. The March 17-23 sales mission to China will include Beijing, Guangzhou, Chengdu and Shanghai. The July 9-12 sales mission will travel to Tokyo, Japan and Seoul, South Korea. The September 23-28 sales mission to India will include Mumbai, New Delhi, and Bengaluru.
We also are offering educational seminars in India, Japan, New Zealand, and Australia to help travel representatives to be better equipped to promote the United States as a travel destination. Check with your Brand USA representative to participate.
At Brand USA, we are committed to our mission to boost international travel to the U.S. and are grateful for our partners who make that goal possible. In 2018, we will work even harder to welcome international visitors to experience memorable adventures throughout 50 states, 5 territories, and the District of Columbia.
Thank you for your ongoing commitment and support of Brand USA programs.
Together, we are marketing the USA!
Christopher L. Thompson
President & CEO