More tourists are visiting the Land of Enchantment, revenue on the rise

New Mexico, communities now focus on advertising local attractions

LAS CRUCES, New Mexico - There is no doubt the Virgin Galactic Spaceport will put New Mexico on the map when it comes to tourism.

Ahead of the first launch, the state is already seeing a boost in the number of visitors.

Governor Susan Martinez said it is the result of a partnership between the state and its communities focused on advertisement.

The Hotel Encanto in Las Cruces serves as an example, it recently announced its partnership with Virgin Galactic.

The hotel is likely to attract A-list visitors who are taking the trip into space, and at the same time, promote local business in Las Cruces.

Gov. Martinez said New Mexico already has a record-breaking number of tourists visiting the state.

"We have 2.4 million individuals, people from all over the country, come to New Mexico and we only have 2 million people that live in New Mexico," she said.

The state has seen a seven percent increase when it comes to revenue.

Martinez said the state previously used most of its resources toward administration rather than advertisement. That changed after state officials got the results of a nationwide study that showed the impact when advertisement is the focus.

"When we saw the return in investment, then that was the money that was spent. Then we knew how to target our advertisement," said Gov. Martinez.

The state tourism department and New Mexico's communities are working together to highlight attractions. In turn, it maximizes the amount of money put into promoting New Mexico cities, towns and parks.

"They're partnering with us with their dollars-- and our dollars. We're multiplying the amount of money spent on advertisement," said Martinez.

Governor Martinez said it's "win-win situation" for the Land of Enchantment and its communities.

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