Advertising Effectiveness & ROI Reports

Visit Williamsburg’s “LIfe. At your pace.” campaign achieved sustainable, quantitative results. The destination marketing organization's comprehensive reports illustrate the return on investment for every dollar spent on media.

The results from 2019 through 2023 can be found below:


  • The 2023 advertising campaign ran from January to October 2023 and influenced travel to the Williamsburg area from all target markets. With an average trip spend of $1,224, the campaign influenced $657 million in visitor spending. This results in a return of $56 for each $1 invested in the media buy

  • 82% of trips were planned within three months or less of visiting. These trips were motivated by a variety of attractions and activities. Busch Gardens was the top motivator, followed by Colonial Williamsburg, Jamestown Settlement, and Historic Jamestowne. Many of the top motivators are in James City County, and half of overnight visitors report staying in lodging within the county. A quarter stayed in Williamsburg proper

  • Trips to Williamsburg declined over the course of the study period (October 2022 to November 2023), with the height of visitation to the area in April (14%). This is not likely due to the trip experience, as 95% of visitors are very satisfied with their visit to the area. Read the full summary here.

    • Read the full summary here


  • The fall and holiday advertising influenced about 54,000 Williamsburg trips and about $75 million in visitor spending during November and December; the return on the fall and holiday ads was $86 in visitor spending for each $1 invested in the media

    • Read the full summary here

  • Visit Williamsburg’s advertising (January – October 2022) ultimately influenced approximately 432,000 trips to the region, resulting in $832 million in visitor spending, and a return of $73 in visitor spending for each $1 invested in the media buy

    • Read the full summary here

  • Additional media investment from May to June led ad awareness to grow from 51% to 52%, equating to about 300,000 additional ad-aware households

    • Read the full summary here

  • From Jan. through April 2022, advertising generated 51% awareness, reaching 8.6 million target households

    • Read the full summary here


  • The fall-themed, holiday-themed, and other advertising that ran during the 2021 fall and holiday seasons each reached about a third of target households; combined, 45% of target households recall seeing any of this advertising

    • Read the full summary here


  • The 2020 “Life. At your pace.” advertising campaign included linear TV/CTV, digital banner, social, and influencer content advertising; the digital banner and social ads included summer, fall, and holiday executions 

    • Read the full summary here


  • Visit Williamsburg influenced more than 350,000 trips to the destination in 2019 with its paid promotions; this resulted in more than $400 million in influenced visitor spending, or $86 for every $1 spent on marketing

    • Read the full summary here

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