Annual Partner Survey Results Are In
THIS ARTICLE APPEARS IN THE RED ROCK NEWS
May 20, 2022
Our annual partner survey results are in and while we are still analyzing the results, I want to share some preliminaries about Sedona’s business priorities.
An overwhelming majority say their business is tourism-related
When asked “Is your business directly or indirectly related to tourism?” 71 percent responded “Yes.”
Tourism’s impact runs deeper than direct sales to visitors. Yavapai College estimates tourism businesses purchase $100.1 million in local services each year, supporting 1,097 supplier jobs that generate more than $30 million in labor income.
Also, employees in tourism and tourism-related businesses spend more than $100 million locally each year for personal services and household goods.
Our members say out-of-state markets are critical
The survey shows businesses see out-of-state markets, especially Los Angeles, as essential. Below are the percentages of business respondents and the out-of-state markets they say are very important or important to them (figures rounded to nearest half-percent):
City Very Important Important Total
LA 47 25 72
Las Vegas 44 22 66
Chicago 41 22 63
NYC 39 22 61
We know out-of-staters stay longer and spend more than other visitors. Reaching these competitive markets with messages that visitors are welcome to join us as partners in environmental and lifestyle is a double-barreled strategy: it will attract desirable visitors and prepare them to be respectful contributors.
Members strongly believe we should reach out to educate visitors about sustainability and responsible behavior.
No other issue generated such a strong response.
Respondents are virtually unanimous (94%) that we should educate visitors to be responsible guests; 82% believe it strongly. Our visitors need to accept their responsibility to pack out trash, stay on trails, follow traffic and pedestrian laws, use transit, and respect the natural quiet of the outdoors and our neighborhoods.
Members look to us to get that message out. The new banners in Uptown promoting Leave No Trace and Sedona Cares are the latest ways we are reaching in-town visitors, and on behalf of our businesses and a sustainable Sedona, we will continue to advocate for communicating to prospective visitors, too.
Members say we should promote Sedona as a sustainable destination that values environmental stewardship.
Eighty seven percent support promoting Sedona as a sustainable community, 56% strongly.
This means framing Sedona as a place where we live our values of environment and quality of life, and we expect visitors to practice those values, too. Our message: we welcome you and expect you to do your part.
Sustainability is a top-three issue for Sedona businesses
After affordable housing (57%) and transportation (55%), sustainability (51%) is the top issue for our businesses. No other issue topped 50%.
Respondents say we should work to increase visitor spending in summer and winter
In summer, 81% agree or strongly agree that we should work to increase visitor spending; in winter, 71% agree or strongly agree.
Messages that Sedona offers an endless variety of experiences and sensations as well as a chance to recreate responsibly and in good conscience can encourage visitors to plan bigger budgets for a Sedona sojourn.
Virtually all respondents believe the Chamber’s advocacy role with government is crucial
Ninety percent of members believe it is important the Chamber represent business voices to government bodies and agencies. The majority say they believe this strongly.
There is much more to unpack from our twenty-question survey, and I look forward to updating you on the complete results. Thank you to all the Chamber partners who participated. Your engagement makes us an effective regional voice for business and a powerful advocate for balanced sustainability. We appreciate you!
–Michelle Conway, Interim President/CEO
Sedona Chamber of Commerce & Tourism Bureau