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The Palm Beaches Connection
Visitors call it paradise. You call it home. Whether you were born and raised in the area or came to visit and never left, the different attractions to Palm Beach County are many. Rich in sights, culture, business opportunities and distinctive activities, one unique venue has found a way to bring it all to life through film-induced tourism.
If you’ve ever visited a particular destination after seeing it through the lens of a television, video, or cinema screen, then you’ve experienced film-induced tourism. VISIT FLORIDA, the state’s official tourism marketing corporation, has indicated that 23 percent of all domestic visitors to Florida were influenced to visit our area after seeing it in a film or TV series. Creating programming that keeps exposing our area to the masses was one of the driving forces that resulted in the creation of The Palm Beaches TV, Palm Beach County’s first tourism television channel, offering a new approach to tourism marketing.
The Palm Beaches TV is a first of its kind, family-friendly channel that offers 24/7 high-quality content of the latest news, attractions, and experiences that connects visitors and locals to what they can explore in The Palm Beaches. The channel provides an in-depth look at area beaches, dining, recreation, sports, attractions, events, culture, local entertainment, and more. The Palm Beaches TV is available online worldwide at www.thepalmbeaches.tv and through the streaming platform, Roku.
While the channel is owned and operated by Olympusat, all content is overseen and approved by the Palm Beach County Tourist Development Council (TDC) and the Palm Beach County Film & Television Commission (PBCFTC). This collaborative partnership helps ensure the continued steady growth of visitors to The Palm Beaches through destination-defining programming.
“The TV channel allows the county’s tourism partners to align marketing efforts and leverage dollars to efficiently market the destination, strengthen brand awareness, and better serve tourism stakeholders within the county,” says Michelle Hillery, deputy film commissioner of the FTC. “The Palm Beaches TV will attract new visitors, entice group sales for our hotels, lengthen stays and ultimately increase tourism numbers.”
To effectively create the channel, the TDC, and the PBCFTC, have worked tirelessly to create a sponsorship program that brings in tourism branded content for the channel. The Tourism Branded Content Sponsorship Program was designed to initiate and sponsor tourism branded content that features The Palm Beaches. Through this program, these entities are investing in local production companies to conceive the content. Within less than a year, over 10 hours of diverse programming have been added to the channel through shows such as Scuba Nation, On the Town in the Palm Beaches, Birding Adventures, Hooked on the Palm Beaches, 3 Par-Fect Days, Travels & Traditions by Burt Wolf, and more. The initiative has featured close to 160 local businesses as backdrop in sponsored productions and has reach upwards to 65 million homes.
“We diversified our portfolio of services to include actively pursuing and sponsoring tourism branded content to drive and increase tourism in The Palm Beaches,” states Hillery. “The FTC is able to harness the talents of the local production community, strategically infusing private sector investment by stimulating more production business.”
Tourism is Florida’s No. 1 industry, responsible for welcoming 116.5 million visitors in 2017. Based on the latest economic impact study, Florida visitors spent $112 billion and supported 1.4 million Florida jobs. In Palm Beach County alone, tourism is among the county’s major industries generating an annual economic impact of $7.0 plus billion in the local economy, producing $45 million plus in bed-tax revenue, on lodging sales exceeding $700 million annually and supporting 60,000 plus tourism related jobs.
Hillery added that the entertainment industry has the power to greatly influence tourist destination choices and influential imagery [shown in the channel] that speaks directly to people who ultimately become individual tourism ambassadors.
Following its soft launch, the TV channel is currently available in-room in close to 1000 local rooms at hotels like the PGA National Resort & Spa and the DoubleTree by Hilton in Palm Beach Gardens, the Best Western in West Palm Beach, and the Marriott Resort Palm Beach on Singer Island.
The Palm Beaches TV captures the spirit of Palm Beach County, exploring the unique and entertaining areas throughout the County. With 39 distinct cities and towns, each region has something special to offer for guests of all ages. The channel showcases ways to maximize their time and entice guests to return for future visits.
Last June, a panel discussion was hosted at Ko-Mar Productions during the annual Film Florida meeting to showcase how the Palm Beaches TV channel was established, how the FTC works with local production companies, why distribution is key to the success of the program, and how it can be duplicated within other film commissions and TDC’s around the state. The long-term goal is to add more hotel partners and to continue to generate fresh new content for the channel.
“There are 39 municipalities in this county and we want them all to have their time in the sunshine [through the channel],” said TDC’s Executive Director Glenn Jergensen during the meeting. “We want them all to shine through entertaining content for all ages.”
Hillery indicates that in a short period of time the TDC anticipates other County establishments such as the airport, medical facilities, libraries, and other public places to add The Palm Beaches TV to their venues. She expects that the impact on tourism brought on by the channel will be significant.
Whether you are seasonal guests, international travelers, first-time visitors, or local residents, there is something for everyone. Tune in, explore, and rediscover The Palm Beaches through a new lens! To view the channel and obtain more information, visit www.thepalmbeaches.tv.