Marketing Grant

The marketing grant provides tourism organizations such as CVBs, chambers of commerce or regional tourism organizations a way to expand their marketing message. The partnership is designed to increase visitation to their community and increase travel-generated revenue, while leveraging TDTD’s brand “The Soundtrack of America. Made in Tennessee.” through marketing initiatives. Partnerships awarded are limited to available funds, as well as the number of requests received.

* The FY19-20 Grant is in progress. The next round has not been announced.



Grant at a Glance


The Tennessee Department of Tourist Development  is pleased to announce that we will once again provide matching funds for FY 2019-20 through the Tourism Marketing Grant Program.

This grant provides tourism organizations the opportunity to expand the impact of their marketing message, increase visitation to their community and increase travel-generated revenue, while leveraging TDTD’s brand and marketing efforts/initiatives.

Partnerships awarded are limited to available funds, as well as the number of requests. Below is a snapshot of the details for the 2019-20 Tourism Marketing Grant:

·        $1M TDTD budget

·        1:1 Reimbursable Grant

·        For tourism marketing only

·        Contracts will be issued

·        Consistency with TDTD’s campaign messages “The Soundtrack of America. Made in Tennessee.” *All State logo usage must be approved see FAQ and Brand Guideline

·        Projects from July 1, 2019 - May 1, 2020 may be included.







July 12, 2019                 Application open


Aug. 9, 2019                   Deadline to submit application to TDTD


Aug. 15, 2019                 Grant Reviews held


Aug. 16, 2019                 TDTD to send the award emails to all participating partners


Aug. 23, 2019                 TDTD to send award emails and contracts to partners on or before.


Aug. 30, 2019                 Signed copy of contract is due to TDTD by each participating


Dec. 2, 2019                    Update on project status submitted to TDTD


March 2, 2020               Update on project status submitted to TDTD (No scope changes after this date)


June 1, 2020                   All reimbursement paperwork is due from the partners - This is the FINAL date to submit a request for reimbursement. You must have all documentation including proof of purchase which includes bank statements or cancelled checks, etc.


*We encourage you to submit paperwork as projects are completed throughout the year.


Aug 30, 2020                  Final Report Due



Who is Eligible



The Official Destination Marketing Organization for each county or region, such as:

  • Convention & Visitors Bureaus
  • Chambers of Commerce
  • Community development related organizations that are non-profit and considered “official tourism organizations”  (i.e. Middle East Tennessee Tourism Council, Southcentral Tourism Association.)


Who is not Eligible


Tourism partners that are not considered an Official Destination Marketing Organization, such as:

  • Attractions
  • Festival – although an organization can use funds to market an event
  • Museums
  • Tennessee Main Street organizations
  • The following Destination Marketing organizations in the top five counties (Davidson – Nashville CVC, Hamilton – Chattanooga CVB, Knox – Visit Knoxville, Sevier – Gatlinburg CVB, Pigeon Forge Dept. of Tourism, Sevierville Chamber of Commerce, and Shelby – Memphis CVB) in terms of tourism expenditures

What project / expenditures are eligible?




The grant projects should be for Tourism Marketing and should align with the state’s pillars and brand, and they should allow for strong measurement capabilities.  The following is a list of potential marketing projects that are eligible:


  • Tourism related rack cards, brochures, visitor guides, newsletters, etc.); the distribution must reach consumers, not the organization’s members
  • Photography and videography
  • Rack card design
  • Interpretive or directional signage
  • Print advertising
  • Broadcast advertising
  • Digital support programs, such as paid media /ads, social media (i.e. facebook boosts) or paid search  (This does not pay admin for someone to post to social media)
  • Website development (includes the enhancement of an existing website or a new site)
  • Tourism-related tradeshows and exhibit promotional materials (does not include travel expenses, registrations expenses while on site)


If you have an idea that is not listed above, but you think it directly promotes “Tennessee’s brands.” message and tourism to Tennessee, please contact your division manager or  Melanie Beauchamp at 615-741-9009 or email at to determine eligibility before submitting your paperwork. TDTD maintains the discretionary right to create exceptions or additional


What project / expenditures are not eligible?

  • Agency time - projects completed by an agency are eligible but commission for ad buys are not.
  • Reprinting of an existing brochure without changes or updates
  • Hosting fees for a website or CRM
  • Salaries or administrative expenses, such as travel reimbursement  or office equipment
  • Fees paid to TDTD for program participation ( Retire TN, Sales program sponsorships)
  • Development or enhancements to infrastructure
  • Speaker fees, entertainment, trophies or prize money
  • Promotions for events or campaigns that are community-based and are not a draw for visitors more than 50 miles away. 
  • TDTD maintains the discretionary right to create exceptions or additional eligibility regulations on a case-by-case basis.