Business News for the Mississippi Delta

Chrissy Garner

By Lyndsi Naron

Chrissy Garner, Advertising and Marketing Manager at Tunica Convention & Visitors Bureau, is making an impression on the tourism industry in the Delta.

“I’m originally from central Arkansas and grew up there starting at the age of five,” says Garner. “My parents have always been very supportive of me. My dad passed in 2004, but he instilled a great work ethic doing what needed to be done without complaining. My mom is still my biggest cheerleader.”

Ever since she was a teenager, Garner has been enamored with the idea of working in advertising.

“I enrolled at Arkansas State University in Jonesboro, Arkansas, and majored in Communications with an emphasis on Radio and TV and a minor in Marketing,” says Garner. “I graduated in 1999.”

After her graduation from ASU, Garner began working at an advertising agency in Little Rock that handled the Tunica CVB account.

“One of my first jobs was as a media buyer that allowed me to develop and place a media buy for Tunica,” says Garner. “I left that agency, but returned a few years later. I had originally dipped my toes in tourism and, upon returning, jumped head first into the industry. I was intrigued and learned as much as I could in both tourism and marketing. A few years later, the CVB decided to change advertising agencies, but I was invested in this thing called tourism and wasn’t ready to give it up. I left the agency life and transitioned to the client side by working directly for Tunica.”

She believes her time on the agency side of advertising is truly her foundation.

“I would never be able to do any of what I do today without the help of great people who allowed me to soak up the knowledge of their individual departments,” said Garner.

According to Garner, her passion is in putting out the best product she can by showing visitors all the great amenities and attractions in Tunica as well as the Delta and why they should make the trip.

“I was hired at the Tunica Convention & Visitors Bureau in the fall of 2008 as part of an advertising agency transition. My plan was to stay in Tunica for a year and go back to agency life. Almost sixteen years later, I’m still here. My job encompasses all things marketing. Some of my day-to-day activities include; managing cooperative and key market campaigns, managing daily social media and website posts/updates, designing and writing various marketing materials, writing blogs and managing our annual visitor guide. Through these projects, I’m able to show our visitors a visual of why our destination and area is a great getaway.”

Garner said the variety in her day to day tasks makes her job enjoyable.

“There’s no daily monotony,” says Garner. “Working at the CVB allows me the opportunity to do a little bit of everything in marketing. One day I may be working on budgets and spreadsheets, the next on location for a TV shoot, and the next designing a handout.”

Garner shared that her goal for the destination and area is always visitation. 

“If they visit once, they’ll most likely return,” says Garner.

Garner is also a member of the Mississippi Tourism Association. 

“This group represents the tourism industry throughout our state by advocating for and promoting tourism, in addition to, providing educational opportunities for its members. It’s a true community of tourism leaders,” says Garner.

Outside of her work in tourism, Garner spends her time reading and listening to podcasts.

“After work, I spend most of my time hanging out with my boyfriend and our dogs, a Doberman and a German Shepherd mix,” says Garner.