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SW La. visitors bureau to conduct tourism study

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LAKE CHARLES, La. (AP) — The Southwest Louisiana Convention & Visitors Bureau has hired a firm to research how visitors feel about the region and how the local tourism industry can capitalize on travel trends.

Executives with Charlotte, North Carolina-based Young Strategies spoke with community leaders Tuesday about what the four-monthlong process will entail. The study costs $50,000.

"We're going to talk about how people are behaving as a traveling public and how we influence their decisions," said Berkeley Young, president of Young Strategies.

Surveys will be sent to tourists who have responded to the bureau's advertising and who are in its database. The firm will ask those who visited about what their perception of the area is, what they enjoyed about their visit and how long they stayed in the region.

"We come in and use scientific research, and we put a plan before you that works for your community," he said. Shelley Johnson, bureau executive director, told the American Press (http://bit.ly/1eOXZNb) the survey will help her and her team learn its strengths and weaknesses.

"The survey is going to give us a lot of information. These guys are at the top in the tourism research industry," she said.

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Information from: American Press, http://www.americanpress.com

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