The Web site, flymidmo.com, is intended to be a one-stop shop for fliers in the entire mid-Missouri area, branching off from the airport’s existing page on the City of Columbia Web site to emphasis a regional focus.
“We wanted to have a Web site that we felt could reach everybody in the mid-Missouri area,” airport manager Kathy Frerking said.
The Web site and new jingle — coupled with the print, radio and TV ads already released — aim to raise awareness about the flight services offered through Northwest Airlink.
“This is phase one of our campaign, you might say,” Frerking said.
The city contracted Zimmer Radio Group to produce its radio spots for one year, which began in October, for $16,092, city purchasing agent Marilyn Starke said.
The city chose its first jingle, “Why drive when it’s so easy to fly?,” because music improves recall of the advertised product, a city news release said.
Barbara Davis, manager of Great Southern Tiger Travel at 27 S. Tenth St., lauded the Web site Monday. She said the travel agency has seen a tremendous increase in fliers who want to use the regional airport and that the new Web site will be a good resource for them.
“We're selling out like crazy,” Davis said. “Now that Northwest has come in, it really, really has picked up.”
Web site visitors can use the FlightView application to track arrivals and departures or to view a map that tracks the flights virtually. An airfarewatchdog.com application on the site’s home page lists low-fare specials, and links users to travel Web sites that help them book their trips.
“The use of this Web site enables people not only to check departures and arrivals and track flights but also to compare costs, which is very important,” said Don Laird, president of the Columbia Chamber of Commerce.
Potential fliers can use the site’s trip calculator to compare fares out of Columbia Regional Airport with fuel, fares and parking costs that they would pay using other airports in the area.
Graphic Illusions of Columbia created the Web site for $2,500. The FlightView tracker cost the city $2,110, Starke said.
The new Web site and campaign were created in partnership with the city, the Columbia Chamber of Commerce and the Columbia Convention and Visitors Bureau.
“I'm very excited about it,” said Greg Cecil, chairman of the Airport Advisory Board. “It's going to help make it easier for folks to learn about our air service and where they can go from Columbia.”