Case Study
Tennessee department of tourist development


Tourism is a $10.3 billion-per-year industry in Tennessee, drawing some 38.9 million visitors each year. Employing around 173,000 people, tourism is the state’s second-largest industry.

The Tennessee Department of Tourism Development is tasked with the marketing of Tennessee to vacationers in the United States, as well as internationally.

To help achieve its goals and to more effectively communicate and market Tennessee, the Department of Tourism Development retained Ackermann PR to develop and implement a News Bureau. The News Bureau was designed to actively engage in news production and distribution services to connect news organizations with the plethora of important news and tourism-oriented developments that are occurring each day across Tennessee.

A primary objective of the News Bureau’s operation was to dramatically broaden and extend the targeted media and generate greater opportunities for more editorial coverage and placements. Much of this expansion was achieved by focusing on niche opportunities, reaching beyond traditional travel editors and writers to generate niche- specific stories from throughout the state.



To facilitate the News Bureau operations, Ackermann PR utilized its unique “Media War Room” staffed by former journalists and media relations experts.

By combining media savvy personnel with cutting-edge databases, news source identification systems, and all- electronic news distribution capability and an all-electronic news clipping service, the Media War Room created the best of both worlds for the Department of Tourism Development: the cost-competitiveness of a technology- based system with the creativity and knowledge that only experts in media relations can deliver.


The program also features a dedicated Web site with a password-protected area for state tourism venues and businesses and an area strictly for the media. The

media section provides daily updated news content and photographs as a resource.



In the first six months of operation, the News Bureau generated and distributed some 340 news releases and feature article submissions. More than 200 articles

appeared in 40 different states as well as Japan, Canada, Great Britain, Ireland, Belgium, Australia, Germany and

Switzerland. This resulted in the News Bureau generating more than 300,000,000 print impressions.