Menu

The Challenge

Elevating Milwaukee's Perception

The experience of visiting Milwaukee is much more impressive than the city’s outside perception. Milwaukee is modern and dynamic, yet impressions among people who haven’t visited often default to legacy images of beer, cheese or Happy Days.

VISIT Milwaukee’s mission is to attract visitors to the city. Their website is the single greatest marketing tool the organization has, and one that needed to address the city’s perception challenge head-on.

The Solution

Highlighting the Wonderfully Random Spirit of the city

People who’ve visited Milwaukee for the first time are consistently surprised by the many unexpected, wonderfully random, and “Instagrammable” experiences they’ve had during their stay, leaving with their image of the city transformed.

To set up VISIT Milwaukee for future success, HD expanded beyond building a high-quality website to develop a broader brand story and creative idea executed through a digital experience that captured the modern spirit of Milwaukee.

The creative approach brings the wonderfully random spirit of Milwaukee to life via classic city nicknames. Milwaukee has been called “The Cream City” and “The City of Festivals,” but why stop there? HD introduced more than 100 playful new nicknames for Milwaukee—all rooted in unique, often unexpected truths about the city. From “Home of the Flying Art Museum on the Water” to “The Bloody Mary Metropolis,” these nicknames are a memorable shorthand for the seemingly endless stream of one-of-a-kind experiences waiting to be discovered across the city.

Homepage

An interactive homepage allows users to discover more playful nicknames that give a peek into what people can find during their visit to Milwaukee. The large colorful designs take users to featured content.
An interactive homepage allows users to discover more playful nicknames that give a peek into what people can find during their visit to Milwaukee. The large colorful designs take users to featured content.

Randomizer

A virtual slot-machine coined “The Randomizer” gives users a wonderfully random way to find suggestions for unique things to do and discover in Milwaukee.
A virtual slot-machine coined “The Randomizer” gives users a wonderfully random way to find suggestions for unique things to do and discover in Milwaukee.

Interactive Neighborhoods

The interactive neighborhood feature highlights 15 of Milwaukee’s vibrant neighborhoods, allowing users to explore local restaurants, shops, and businesses to plan their trips.
The interactive neighborhood feature highlights 15 of Milwaukee’s vibrant neighborhoods, allowing users to explore local restaurants, shops, and businesses to plan their trips.

Madlib

A MadLib-inspired event finder provides an entertaining way to find local events happening around Milwaukee.
A MadLib-inspired event finder provides an entertaining way to find local events happening around Milwaukee.

MyTrip

A global MyTrip planning tool gives visitors an easy-to-use shopping cart that travels with them as they explore the site, allowing them to curate their upcoming trip to Milwaukee one click at a time.
A global MyTrip planning tool gives visitors an easy-to-use shopping cart that travels with them as they explore the site, allowing them to curate their upcoming trip to Milwaukee one click at a time.

The Results

Since the launch on March 17, 2018, mobile traffic saw an overall increase of 40 percent compared to last year. Organic traffic has increased by 28 percent, bounce rate from the website has decreased by 24 percent and users are spending 60 seconds longer per session.

In the first nine months, the new website's hotel booking widget has referred 13,366 room nights and $2MM revenue to area hotels.

In addition to positive site statistics, public opinion was overwhelmingly positive, with the site receiving glowing reviews and many positive public mentions.
  • 40% Increase

    in mobile traffic
  • Referred $2MM

    revenue to area hotels
  • 28% increase

    organic traffic
  • 24% decrease

    bounce rate
  • +1 minute

    session duration