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Thursday October 9, 2014

Martinsville-Henry County’s official tourism website, VisitMartinsville.com, has been upgraded. The rebuilt site was launched this past week and features a colorful and vibrant new look showcasing the division’s new branding and theme of “Fun in Record Time” that was unveiled in July. Slideshows on the homepage depict the many ways that visitors can play, explore, shop, dine, relax and stay in MHC.

The new website, built by HD Web Studio, incorporates fresh photography, video content and social media to create a media-rich environment for visitors to explore. The site is responsive, meaning that pages resize automatically so visitors can enjoy the same media-rich content on their computer, tablets and smart phones. 

In addition to the ease of being responsive, new technology on the site allows users to search for specific keywords, to download an iCal feed of community events directly to their personal Outlook Calendar and to interact with blog stories via social media.

According to Jennifer Doss, director of tourism for Martinsville-Henry County, “We are experiencing record growth in our area’s tourism industry, so this is the perfect time to ramp up our efforts to ensure that the marketing message for Martinsville-Henry County is strong, consistent and inviting.” 

A recent study by the United States Travel Association reported that more than $64.8 million dollars were generated in 2013 by domestic visitors to Martinsville-Henry County. The report also details that out of 134 localities in the state, Henry County currently ranks in the top 50 for positive growth of tourism expenditures and Martinsville City ranks at 106. 

VisitMartinsville.com is used by more than 96,000 unique visitors each year with nearly 300,000 page views. Online visitation is up 26 percent as compared the previous years’ traffic. Doss added that, “In today’s digital age, it is imperative that our community stay relevant by providing up-to-date online content for potential visitors to browse.”

The website features a community calendar with filters so that visitors can browse all events or search for specific types of events such as musical performances or sporting events.

Navigating the areas of Play and Explore, visitors can locate activities that they want to enjoy such as hiking, boating or visiting art galleries.

History buffs can browse through the Deep Roots section to discover about our area’s rich heritage of motorsports, textiles and furniture. Throughout the website, pages offer “Fun Facts” about area businesses and attractions, playing off of the theme of “Fun in Record Time”. 

The website even has an area specific for local businesses. Under the Connect section, business owners can learn about resources available to the local tourism industry including marketing services, professional development and funding opportunities. 

VisitMartinsville’s first website was created in 2006. According to Beth Deatherage of HD Web Studio, “The industry recommends that an organization update their website every 3-5 years. The Economic Development Corporation’s Tourism Division was able to keep their last website relevant longer by keeping the content fresh and implementing subtle design changes periodically. The new VisitMartinsville design breaks the traditional website mold and is just another reason the EDC’s Tourism Division continues to be a leader and trend setter amongst their peers.”

Tags: Henry County, Insider's Tips, Martinsville, MHC Visitor Center,