Destination Cleveland has one of the best jobs in the city: we get to spend all day helping more people discover the real Cleveland. That’s because Destination Cleveland is Cuyahoga County’s convention and visitors bureau. We are a private non-profit organization whose mission is to drive economic impact and stimulate community vitality for Greater Cleveland through leisure and business travel.
Established in 1934, we are a DMAI-accredited destination marketing organization that was one of the first of its kind in the nation – in other words we’ve been getting people to visit Cleveland for a long time. With more than 700 partner businesses and a growing hospitality industry, we’re excited to help increase in the number of visitors to Cleveland
So, how do you define a visitor?
Good question – we get pretty specific about how to define a visitor because we hold ourselves accountable to our hotel and hospitality partners.
Visitors are anyone who comes to Cleveland to stay at one of our hotels or drives more than 50 miles for a day trip – that means anyone who comes to Cleveland on a temporary basis for business or leisure. This includes everyone from a group of friends on vacation, an executive on business, an attendee of a convention, a family going to a reunion or even your Aunt Mary in town to catch a Polka Happy Hour at the Happy Dog. We could go on for days.
How does Destination Cleveland get visitors to come to Cleveland?
Destination Cleveland markets and advertises in cities where we attract the most leisure visitors including places like Pittsburgh, Columbus, Detroit and Cincinnati. We do this through a variety of advertising efforts (online, print, TV, radio, etc.), promotional activities (contests, giveaways, newsletters, etc.) public relations and social media (Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, etc.).
The meetings and conventions market is our other main way to get visitors to come to Cleveland. By working with meeting planners and our hotel partners we can attract a meeting or convention that ranges in size from 150 to 10,000 people.
We bring in meetings, tradeshows and conferences to the FirstMerit Convention Center of Cleveland, as well as alternate venues like hotels and the I-X Center. We have a dedicated sales force that has long-standing relationships with meeting planners from all over the country. And, in case you didn’t know, for every $1 Destination Cleveland spends selling conventions and meetings, we return $105 to the community.
What else does Destination Cleveland do?
We’re glad you asked.
ADVOCACY: Destination Cleveland also is the primary advocate for the travel, tourism and hospitality industries here in Cleveland. We support the 60,000+ small business jobs and $6.7 billion of economic impact from the tourism industry in Cuyahoga County.
SUPPORT: We support major citywide initiatives and events like the Rock and Roll Half Marathon, International Gay Games, National Senior Games, NCAA Women’s Final Four, the RNC bid, the US Figure Skating Championships, etc.