Business Tourism Improvement District Background
A Message from the Executive Director
We’re more than pleased … we’re also quite grateful and proud! We’re grateful to the Bishop Lodging Community and Bishop City Council for believing the Bishop Tourism Improvement District could make a positive impact. In just two years, BTID funded programs have made a measurable difference; elevating Bishop ’s status as a desirable destination – not just a pit-stop on HWY 395. We’re grateful to our many partners. Bishop lodging establishments have invested in improvements so guests will have the most comfortable experience. Bishop restaurants, retailers and others contribute through chamber membership, co-sponsoring events and offering great products and service. Bishop City Council continues to contribute through the Community Promotion program. Inyo County’s CPSP grant program helps with some event expenses, brochure production and other projects. And, we’re most grateful for the continued support of our community. Hundreds of volunteers provide thousands of hours to ensure the success of dozens of events – we could never succeed without their generous support! We’re proud to maintain authentic messaging in our marketing efforts. Real locals are having real conversations with our guests. In fact, we don’t think of visitors as tourists at all. We think of them as “guests” that are coming to our big backyard to enjoy our place with us and be welcomed back. Local voices are creating the content and we’re using some of the best travel industry professionals to help deliver the messages. We are certain this fusion of efforts will lead to sustainable and responsible economic growth that benefits everyone. As you’ll see in this report, we’re also proud of the progress made. All metrics indicate the programs are working as planned, most far exceeding expectations. We ’re looking forward to another great year!
Bishop on the Move – by Civitas
The town of Bishop lies within driving distance of some of California’s iconic landmarks such as the Sierra Nevada mountains, Mammoth Lakes, Yosemite National Park, and Death Valley. Far from being overshadowed by these well-known destinations, Bishop is a major resort town with its own attractions like the Buttermilk Boulders, and its own claim to fame, like being recognized as a Top 50 Adventure Town by National Geographic in 2011.
While the town could have rested on reputation, Bishop instead decided to pursue further adventure by establishing the Bishop Tourism Improvement District (BTID) in 2014. A 2% assessment became effective on January 1, 2015, with funds set to be used for tourism promotion programs. The programs included carefully considered projects from marketing to trout stocking, as well as tracking and measurement of results.
The Bishop website was rebuilt and launched in January 2018. By 2017, the BTID annual report found: “78.3% are new users. This proves marketing efforts are working to create new interest. The new website is an excellent tool for measuring effectiveness of all marketing investments. The significant increase in organic search indicates brand awareness is increasing – people are searching specifically for Bishop.”
In those two years, annual occupancy also increased from 60.7% to 67.0%, equating to nearly 20,000 more room nights per year. There were even some increases in average daily rates during off-peak times.
In January 2019, the Bishop City Council unanimously approved the renewal of the Bishop TID for another 10 years, ensuring ongoing support for the “small town with a big backyard.”