case study
visit benicia
"escape by the bay"

How can a small destination maintain visitor revenue despite massive changes to the visitor experience?

With the onset of COVID-19, the waterfront city of Benicia, California – a charming but largely undiscovered jewel of the San Francisco Bay Area – needed to totally re-conceive its tourism marketing strategy for the summer and holiday seasons.

Historically, Benicia has been popular with visitors because of its public events, unique shopping, and indoor dining — attractions which were problematic during the pandemic.


CDA had to scrap the original summer marketing plan for the year and start over, looking at industry data and refocusing on the attractions audiences were crying out for: local day trips, outdoor leisure activities, and safe ways to relax and rejuvenate.

Above all: an escape from 2020!

what we did

  • solution

    While most destinations were still promoting a “we’ll be here when this all blows over” message, CDA recognized an opportunity to transform the visitor experience and drive immediate revenue for local businesses.

    We worked with the city to launch Benicia’s “A Great Escape By the Bay” campaign, which itineraries targeting a drive-radius audience and promoted mental and physical health, interwoven with safe shopping & dining agendas to continue driving revenue for the destination.

  • services

    • Successfully launched “Shop Benicia” local eGift card program to keep local dollars in the economy
    • Paid media outreach (TV, print, digital, social)
    • PR services
    • Social media services
    • Monthly newsletter
    • Photo/video production (TV, web, social)
    • BTS video profiles of local business owners
    • Web design, development, and maintenance
    • Graphic design (flyers, billboards, print, digital ad units)
    • Travel itineraries for visiting influencers & journalists


  • 10x
    owned media engagements
  • 9.7M
    digital pr audience
  • 17.3M
    traditional pr audience
  • +258%
    social engagements
shop local new revenue
We appreciate CDA being able to adapt so quickly, mitigating the pandemic's hit to tourism revenue for the City.
Teri Davena
Economic Development Specialist | City of Benicia
Best Campaign
Platinum Winner
Hermes Creative Awards
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