Visit Henderson

Out of the Shadow of Las Vegas


  • Research & Strategy
  • Creative Development
  • Website Development
  • Content Development
  • Media Buying

Discovering a Brand Out of the Shadow of Vegas

Located between Las Vegas and the Hoover Dam, Henderson struggled to define itself as a tourism, meetings and conventions destination, largely because its nearest neighbors were major landmarks in the public imagination. It would be easy for anyone thinking of visiting Nevada to be swept up in messaging about Las Vegas’ array of dining and nightlife experiences, the vibrancy of The Strip and the excitement of Fremont Street.


We knew Henderson needed to step out of the shadow of its neighbors to define itself as a separate and distinct entity. But where to begin?


The Abbi Agency defined the City of Henderson as a tourism destination by first engaging in research about the area’s unique qualities and key differentiating factors. Our team got on the ground, exploring areas like the vibrant Green Valley, the fashionable Lake Las Vegas and the transforming Water Street arts district to get a feel for the area, conducting interviews with key consumer and stakeholder groups to better understand what they knew and loved about Henderson so we could zero in on the area’s best qualities.


In time, we learned many residents and visitors loved Henderson for its varying and unique architectural styles that populated the city’s various neighborhoods, its distance from the hustle and bustle of Las Vegas, family friendliness, array of activities a person or group could enjoy outdoors, its dining and entertainment establishments and its down-to-earth character. We also learned Henderson’s visitors tended to trend a little bit older, meaning Generation X and Baby Boomer demographics would be an important audience consideration in our planning.


The Big Integrated Idea

Having familiarized ourselves with so much of what made Henderson special, it was now our task to establish an effective communications framework that would lay the path for sharing Henderson’s story with potential visitors. We needed to define key audiences and key messaging.


To do that, we relied on our trusty Messaging Map and consumer segmentation processes — in-house tools we often implement to help understand each audience we want to reach, catalog what their concerns and key characteristics are, define key messages and plan for what outreach tactics and messages we will deploy to each constituency.


Because we also knew there was a lot of work to be done establishing Henderson as visually distinct in the mind of visitors, we also developed a brand style guide. This helped to identify the typefaces, photography, iconography and stylistic “feel” to best utilize in our outreach strategy.


The visual culture and messaging of Henderson drew inspiration from its unique architectural offerings, its friendly, breezy neo-suburban feel and its comparative proximity to nature. We combined elements of these qualities to create a sensation of familiarity, possibility and pressure-free excitement that isn’t too modern or too dated.


Thus, the “So much. So close. So Nevada” campaign was born, bringing each of Henderson’s best characteristics into contact with one another to lay out all the choices Henderson visitors could enjoy from the comfort and convenience of this vibrant, luxuriously relaxed location.


Moving Out of the Shadows and Into New Digital Real Estate


Now that we’d helped Henderson to understand who it was, what it looked like, and who it wanted to be in conversation with, we knew that the brand needed and deserved space to make a case for itself in a big way. Previously, visitor information about Henderson was housed as an ancillary matter on the Municipal Website, which was so rich with other information that it wasn’t exactly easy to find, much less get a feel for the destination.


The Abbi Agency’s web development team knew what we had to do. Quickly, we claimed the Visit Henderson website and began to translate Henderson’s messaging and visual culture to a digital environment—keeping in mind the kinds of information people look for and the intentions behind their search.


We pulled keyword reports to develop topic clusters and established a beautiful, online knowledge base to guide Henderson’s visitors to the region’s best activities, meeting spaces, lodging, and news.


The Visit Henderson website served dual purposes. Not only was it designed to attract and guide visitors through an educational marketing funnel intended to drive lodging bookings, but also to collect data about how consumers are interacting with the brand. We knew we’d need this data to better serve Henderson’s visitors by understanding what they care about most and planning content updates that connect them with it in a manner most convenient to them.


Our Impact

Since building Visit Henderson’s marketing architecture and digital presence, the city has enjoyed an uptick in visitor interest. The website has generated 86.1 percent growth in sessions over a six month period and has secured nearly one-million brand impressions through targeted digital advertisements.


With new assets that help define the destination and an outreach framework that poises the brand for long term success, Henderson has quickly exited the shadow of Las Vegas and now it has nowhere to go but up.

COVID-19 has altered the way we travel and therefore the way we have to market our destinations… learn more about “Tourism in the Time of a Pandemic”