One of the reasons why Missoula has become such a hot spot for meetings, conferences and athletic events is due to the efforts of an organization called Destination Missoula.

Say you’re an organization looking for a place to hold a high level conference. So, how does this opening paragraph grab you?

There’s this place where solitude, wilderness and adventure are only minutes from gourmet restaurants, funky local shops and a killer music scene. It’s a place surrounded by mountains where trails start at your front door. This place is Missoula, Montana and it has the unparalleled natural beauty and cultural vibrancy to make your experience unforgettable.

Group Sales Manager Kara Bartlett was a recent guest on KGVO’s Talk Back show and provided some very impressive statistics on how many people have expressed an interest in coming to Missoula.

“Windfall (their in-house marketing website) gathered these stats for 2018 and 2019 and we go through June 30 through July 1 for our year,” she said. “Just for Missoula we had 6.5 million impressions online, so we were popping up in advertisements, people were seeing us on Instagram, people have seen us in print and digital ads, and then 300,000 engagements, which means 300,000 clicks.”

Bartlett said the Destination Missoula website is a one-stop shop for those planning events around the country, and around the world.

“Our website has everything,” she said. “We have our meetings and conventions, we have the recreation, we have the things to do, the food and drink and other things to do when you’re here. What we don’t know at that moment is whether they’re coming here for a conference and they’re looking at what to do during their free time, or are they just coming for a trip.”

Bartlett said the work done behind the scenes through Destination Missoula provides some welcome tax relief for Montana residents.

“Without tourism, each Montana household would pay approximately $492 more in state and local taxes per year,” she said. “It’s incredible how far reaching and deep reaching it is. It’s not just people coming in and visiting and leaning, there really is so much more to it.”

Destination Missoula will now be a regular once-a-month guest on Talk Back.

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