Case Study


Increase room nights in the key geo-targeted DMAs of San Francisco and Los Angeles. 


Place Outdoor and Digital Media in zip codes with a high propensity to visit Washoe County based on prior room night stays.


The Reno-Sparks Convention & Visitors Authority (RSCVA) is the primary tourism agency supporting convention and tourism business in the Reno Tahoe region. The region is comprised of Washoe County, Nevada which includes Reno, Sparks, and parts of Lake Tahoe. The RSCVA has been running a new branding campaign since Spring 2017 in their primary visitor origination DMA of San Francisco and in growth markets including Los Angeles.

The annual campaign included a mix of radio, out-of-home and digital media.

The out-of-home creative included Reno-Tahoe’s influencers enjoying their favorite activities in Reno Tahoe.

Perception studies from May 2017 – June 2019, showed strong brand ratings, desire, and intent to visit. However, rooms nights and ADR did not increase proportionately.


For the 2019-2020 fiscal year the objective was to shift the media campaign focus from brand awareness to an attribution model that would drive room nights and increase ADR.

The challenge was to maintain brand awareness, while precision targeting the out-of-home media spend within both the Los Angeles and San Francisco DMAs to increase rooms nights year over year. The RSCVA target of Adults 25-49 with HHI $100K+ represents only 16% of the Los Angeles DMA and 25% of the San Francisco DMA.

Utilize RSCVA Visitor Origination Analysis (VOA), Scarborough Market Research and Geopath Insights to pinpoint specific areas within each DMA that had the highest propensity to book overnight stays in Washoe County.

Then focus the out-of-home and supporting digital buys on these high visitor propensity areas to optimize media spend.


  • EXL Media utilized the RSCVA Visitor Origination Analysis (VOA) to select zip codes with high room nights booked in 2017 and 2018. We then overlaid this with high indexing zip codes against Adults 25-49 with HHI $100k+ (Scarborough data)
  • Billboard locations were selected within these high room night zip codes utilizing Geopath Insights to pinpoint optimal locations based on traffic, visibility and demo target.
  • EXL Media created maps with these potential locations in Geopath and personally drove every board in the selected areas to ensure the actual neighborhood and urban areas aligned with the Reno Tahoe brand and target audience. 
  • Once we negotiated and contracted the optimal locations, we then provided reach/frequency against the buys utilizing Geopath ADS (Audience Delivery System).  We also provided maps of the completed out-of-home locations. Upon campaign completion reports were rerun with posted override added in.
  • EXL Media compiled the latitude and longitude coordinates for each purchased out-of-home location from all outdoor vendors. We then geo-fenced the target audience as they passed the structure facing with the Reno Tahoe creative. This target audience was subsequently served mobile banners when they opened websites or apps that were included in the vendor’s programmatic inventory. This allowed us to cost efficiently reach our desired target audience and create frequency.
  • Wi-Fi Video Sponsorships: Travelers were targeted in specific terminals within LAX airport where we had contracted locations. They received free Wi-Fi courtesy of Reno Tahoe after watching a Reno Tahoe branded video. A call to action page followed the video driving users to sign up for the Reno Tahoe newsletter.
  • These digital buys were supplemented with targeted social video buys against the same zip codes.
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Plan Details

Flight Dates:                  

Four flights:

Los Angeles DMA:  Out-of-Home ran during all four flights
San Francisco DMA:    Out-of-Home ran in the first two flights
OOH Formats Used:Static Bulletins, Posters and LAX Airport (Digital, Wall Banners)
Additional Media:Digital including mobile banners geo-fenced to OOH locations, social media video in select zip codes and LAX Wi-Fi video sponsorships and radio

Target Audience: Adults 25-49; HHI $100K+

Total Budget: $2.9M

Target Audience Metrics (Average per 4-5 week flight in each market):

TRP’s: 479

Reach: 44.6%

Frequency: 9.5

Additional Out-of-Home Relevant Metrics:

Budget: $1,158.551

Negotiated Value: $2,674,505 (130% negotiated value against spend)

Override Days: 1,062

Impressions: 170 million

Results Website Sessions

July 15, 2019 – February 2, 2020 (four 4-5 week flights)

Los Angeles DMA: website sessions increased 154% year over year.

July 15, 2019- October 13, 2020 (two 5-week flights)

San Francisco DMA: website sessions increased 35% year over year.

VOA Report

Los Angeles DMA: 33% of the targeted zip codes showed an increase in room nights year over year.

San Francisco DMA: 38% of the targeted zip codes showed an increase in room nights year over year.

RSCVA 2019 Visitor Profile Study

Key Findings related to the effects of this campaign:

Supporting Digital Buy Results

Buys: Geo-fenced mobile banners, social video in select zip codes and LAX Wi-Fi video sponsorship

Spend: $102,000

Value: $191,000 (87% negotiated value against spend)

Impressions: 10,631,927

Campaign Engagements: 1,712,800        

Cost Per Engagement:     $0.06

Note: Campaign engagements include video views, clicks, conversions (newsletter signups and partner referrals) and social video post reactions/engagements.

Consumers and social media Influencers have captured and shared images of the billboards and OOH placements on their social media pages for additional brand exposure. (Jordon 2.5k followers and Breese 50k followers)


Esther Isaac

Director of Marketing – Retired June 2020

Reno-Sparks Convention & Visitors Authority

EXL Media was our media agency of record for over 10 years, and has done a tremendous job in media strategy, planning, and buying for the Reno-Sparks Convention & Visitors Authority. In applying an integrated media approach, EXL Media has included Out of Home as a significant part of the annual buy (35%). They have worked closely with our other marketing partners to develop the most efficient buy with the most effective results. EXL incorporated information from a Visitor Origination Analysis to determine the zip codes with the highest concentration of Reno Tahoe visitors and bought the boards in those zip codes. In addition, EXL Media provided guidance for the best use of creative execution by board and zip code to ensure maximum results. Digital geo targeting was incorporated to maximize tracking and results.

Christina Erny, CDME

Current RSCVA Director of Marketing

Reno Tahoe’s OOH media locations are strategically placed, using vibrant colors and custom verbiage designed for each targeted location that is carefully selected. Layered on that, using recognizable Influencers has garnered extra exposure on digital channels. For example, consumers and social media Influencers have captured and shared images of the billboards and OOH placements on their social media pages for additional brand exposure