Background After the September 11th World Trade Center tragedy, New York City's economy suffered a terrible blow. Chinatown, New York City's largest and oldest community, and only blocks away from Ground Zero, was directly affected by the city's loss of tourism: businesses in the area were devastated.

The September 11th Fund was created to provide financial assistance to promote tourism and bring business back to Chinatown. As a part of the effort for economic turnaround, FUSIA collaborated with AABDC, a nonprofit organization supporting Asian businesses, to create a series of campaigns and promotions to revive lower Manhattan.

Issue Following receipt of funding, there were only a few weeks until the first promotion launch. In this short time, FUSIA had to make the most of the limited resources, exercising beyond traditional marketing and strategy.

Task Organizing a series of campaigns, FUSIA leveraged the popularity of the Moon Festival and Lunar New Year as holidays to be celebrated not only by the Asian community, but by the entire city of New York, in connection with Chinatown. With FUSIA carrying out the planning, marketing and execution, both events consisted of collaborating with Chinatown merchants and vendors along with celebrations of numerous cultural arts.

With the two-day Moon Festival celebration approaching, Fusia had two weeks and no budget for formal advertising to gather community support from vendors and businesses, as well as contact community organizations and tourism boards to quickly and efficiently spread word of the event. However, within that short period of time, over 100 participating vendors were gathered, with thousands coming to enjoy cultural performances and shop.

The Lunar New Year Festival to follow was the first ever event to bring together all Asian countries in celebration. Hosted under a large tent with over 60 vendors and with many Asian tourism organizations and merchants, the free event promoted "Passage to Asia," featuring cultural performances, martial arts demonstrations and an Asian market.

Shortly after, the very first Chinatown Travel Guide was created, published and distributed to further promote both festivals and Chinatown as a whole. Despite the lack of funding and time, existing good relationships within the community fostered the support of over 600 Chinatown merchants. Collecting their information, listings and insight within 2 weeks for the guide, was an experience that proved to be not only a great marketing tool, but it also built a strong relationship with the merchants in exchange for their support, and established an invaluable relationship with the community.

Copies of the travel guide were distributed to major tourist spots, airports, and select hotels in the city.

Results The campaign attracted more than 10,000 visitors, over 60 booth vendors, 20 performances, 20 Asian tourism and community organizations, over 30 media such as NY1 and CBS News, and distinguished guests such as Ambassador Zhang Hongxi (Consul General of China), Ambassador Wonil Cho (Consul General of Korea), Cristyne L. Nicholas (President & CEO, NYC & Company), C. Virginia Fields (Manhattan Borough President), and Alan Gerson (City Councilman).

Vendor sales increased by over 50% in two days alone.

A second edition of the Chinatown Travel Guide was created following the success of the first and gave businesses in the area another significant boost with increased tourism.

Senator Hillary Clinton holding the 2003 Lunar New Year Festival poster designed by FUSIA.

Click image to enlarge.

In Jan 2003, with local businesses still reeling from the economic fallout of 9/11, Fusia joined in the effort to revitalize Chinatown tourism and business, creating the Chinatown Travel guide - the first and most comprehensive guide of its kind.

The 2002 Moon Festival aimed to boost tourism to New York City's Chinatown.

The Lunar New Year Festival - Passage to Asia made possible by FUSIA.

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