Routes Americas 2018 Marketing Awards winners revealed

Myrtle Beach International Airport (MYR) was announced as the overall winner of the Routes Americas 2018 Marketing Awards at a ceremony tonight (14 February) in Quito, Ecuador.

The annual Routes Americas Marketing Awards are highly regarded in the aviation industry because they are voted for and judged by airlines. They recognise the outstanding marketing services that have supported the launch of new air routes or the development of existing services.

In 2012, MYR redefined its air service marketing strategy, which has resulted in amazing growth by the airlines serving the airport. The new strategy’s focus is better seasonal management, with the objective of improving shoulder season capacity levels. Key to the plan is the collection, analysis and sharing of proprietary market-centric data that assist airlines in understanding demand trends at a micro level.

In 2017, airlines serving MYR offered nonstop service from 38 markets to Myrtle Beach, South Carolina. Of the 38 markets, four were new in 2017 and 24 existing markets experienced year-on-year seat capacity increases. MYR’s overall 2017 seat capacity levels were up 20 percent over 2016 and since 2012, airlines serving MYR have added around 500,000 new directional seats with almost half being added from 2016 to 2017.

“To be nominated for Routes Americas Marketing Award was exciting, but to actually win is an incredible honour. The Myrtle Beach International Airport team is grateful to our partners for recognising our unique and aggressive approach to marketing. A big thank to our airline partners for this recognition and for their continued confidence in MYR and the destination it serves, Myrtle Beach, South Carolina,” said Kirk Lovell, director of air service and business development.

In addition to the overall winner, the awards are judged in four categories. Myrtle Beach International Airport topped the ‘Under 4 Million Passengers’ category; Oakland International Airport won the ‘4 to 20 Million Passengers’ category; Seattle-Tacoma International Airport scooped the ‘Over 20 Million Passengers’ category; and Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority was honoured in the ‘Destination’ category.

Reno-Tahoe International Airport, Tampa International Airport, Denver International Airport and St Kitts Tourism Authority were highly commended in each category respectively.

Steven Small, brand director of Routes said: “MYR faced the challenge of being viewed by airlines as a hyper-seasonal market. They invested in understanding their market with a data-driven approach, identifying useful alternative data sources for the benefit of airline new route business cases, successfully convincing airlines to add service.”

As overall winner of tonight’s awards, Myrtle Beach International Airport will be automatically shortlisted for the World Routes Marketing Awards in Guangzhou on 17 September 2018.

The full list of highly commended and winning organisations:

Overall Winner: Myrtle Beach International Airport

Over 20 million passengers
Winner: Seattle-Tacoma International Airport
Highly commended: Denver International Airport

4 – 20 million passengers
Winner: Oakland International Airport
Highly Commended: Tampa International Airport

Under 4 million passengers
Winner: Myrtle Beach International Airport
Highly Commended: Reno-Tahoe International Airport

Winner: Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority
Highly commended: St Kitts Tourism Authority