LOCHABER Chamber of Commerce has announced today (21-06-18) that its recent digital marketing campaign, ‘Connect to your Adventure’, to promote its destination tourism brand, the Outdoor Capital of the UK (OCUK), has been a huge success with results far outstripping campaign projections and engagement from millions of people.
The campaign was match funded with a grant from VisitScotland’s Growth Fund and additional funding from the Highland LEADER Programme, together with support from local businesses.
Over the course of the 12-month campaign (from 01 April 2017), 60 online videos, inspiring potential visitors to ‘connect to their adventure’ in Lochaber, were watched for a total of 1,661,500 minutes; monthly Facebook video views averaged 764,034; monthly Facebook reach averaged 1,934,060 and monthly engagement of Facebook users averaged 51,722.
60 short (11-55 seconds), online videos were produced throughout the campaign. The themed videos showcased Fort William and Lochaber as not only boasting an outstanding array of outdoor activities but also stunning wildlife and fascinating heritage, together with top-class food, drink and welcoming accommodation.
The videos also highlighted just how accessible the OCUK is for all, with visitors from across the UK able to ‘Connect to your Adventure” via the Caledonian Sleeper.
The videos were shared on the OCUK’s website and social media channels; mainly focused on Facebook and Instagram using their custom audience tools for effective retargeting. In addition, the Facebook videos could also be found using the interactive map on the Outdoor Capital website – http://www.outdoorcapital.co.uk.
With a strong emphasis on user-generated content, visitors to the region were also encouraged to share their experiences on social media using the hashtag #myoutdoorcapital. Use of the hashtag also gave adventurers the opportunity to win special short breaks to Lochaber.
The campaign results over the course of the 12-month campaign include:
- The videos were watched for a total of 1,661,500 minutes, equivalent to 3.2 years.
- Monthly Facebook video views averaged 764,034, over 15 times higher than the projected campaign figure.
- 23,750 Facebook likes 63 per cent above the projected campaign target of 15,000.
- Monthly Facebook reach averaged 1,934,060 people, almost nine times higher than the projected campaign figure.
- Monthly engagement of Facebook users averaged at 51,722 people, over five times higher than the projected campaign figure.
- At the end of the campaign, the Outdoor Capital of the UK had 2,897 followers on Instagram, an increase of 1,897 followers.
Campaign Hashtag – #myoutdoorcapital
- At the end of May 2018 5,149 people had used the #myoutdoorcapital hashtag for user generated online content across all social channels.
The top performing campaign videos
- Caledonian Discovery – 260k views
- West Highland Hotel – 258k views
- Glenfinnan – 227k views
- No Fuss Events New Year Resolutions – 203k views
- The Commando Memorial – 189k views
Other videos included features on Mallaig, Fort William, Ardnamurchan, Ben Nevis, The West Highland Way, Caledonian Canal, Local distilleries and a range of activity providers.
Chris Taylor, VisitScotland regional leadership director, said: “Lochaber is a fantastic destination in its own right and I am delighted that we have been able to help pin it firmly on the map as a great outdoor adventure location with the help of Growth Fund money.
“The OCUK digital marketing campaign has proved an effective way of promoting the region using its key strengths of outdoor activities, stunning wildlife, fascinating history and heritage, fantastic food and drink and a wealth of accommodation. The online videos have really captured people’s imaginations.
“We promote Scotland with Scotland. Partnership and collaboration is at the heart of Scottish tourism and VisitScotland works with local industry to develop and deliver innovative initiatives that grow the visitor economy.”
Lesley Benfield, CEO of Lochaber Chamber of Commerce, said: “We are all about improving the visitor experience and delivering content to them on their terms. The previous video campaigns that we have put together provided incredible exposure for Lochaber and we wanted to build on that. The engagement rate of these videos combined with the opportunity to visually communicate how spectacular the Fort William and Lochaber area is, presented too great an opportunity to pass up.
“With this campaign, our main objective was to make sure that the Outdoor Capital of the UK is top of mind at all points of the customer journey and to position the Outdoor Capital of the UK as a place that has so much to offer visitors looking for their own special adventure.
“By giving them quality, digestible digital information about the area and the tools in which to organise their own short break or longer holiday to Lochaber, we wanted them to feel that it is always an extremely simple process when it comes to tailoring their West Highland adventures to their individual interests. The results were fantastic and we are now beginning to see the campaign results develop into increased visits.”
‘Connect to your Adventure’ was a campaign targeted at key UK audiences including families with an appetite for soft, more relaxed adventures and adrenaline junkies looking for more thrilling experiences. The videos produced all carried a special relevance to those being targeted and many showcased tailored experiences to help them make that all important decision to visit.
The overarching aim of the ‘Connect to your Adventure’ campaign was to digitally position the Outdoor Capital of the UK (OCUK), Lochaber Chamber of Commerce’s destination tourism brand, as a place that has so much to offer allowing visitors to tailor their adventure to their own interests.
VisitScotland’s Growth Fund supports collaborative tourism marketing projects which focus on growth in the tourism sector. The aim of LEADER is to increase support to local rural community and business networks to build knowledge and skills, and encourage innovation and cooperation in order to tackle local development objectives.
For interviews, images and further information please contact:
Paddy Cuthbert | Littlehouse Media | E: email@example.com
M: +44 (0)7913 951717
Notes to editors:
Useful websites and social media channels:
Lochaber Chamber of Commerce – http://www.lochaberchamber.co.uk/
The Outdoor Capital of the UK – http://www.outdoorcapital.co.uk/
YouTube channel: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCfjfZdwmujHTnrZpnFAGJBg/videos
To find out more about the VisitScotland Growth Fund – http://www.visitscotland.org/growthfund
VisitScotland on Twitter – https://twitter.com/VisitScotNews
For further information on Scottish LEADER programme from Scottish Rural Network, go to: https://www.ruralnetwork.scot/funding/leader
A short Q & A with Lesley Benfield, CEO of Lochaber Chamber of Commerce:
Q: Why did you go with a digital campaign focusing on online video and user generated content?
A: Here at the Outdoor Capital we are all about improving the customer experience and delivering content to them on their terms. The previous video campaigns that we had put together provided incredible exposure for Lochaber and we wanted to build on that.
The engagement rate of these videos combined with the opportunity to visually communicate how spectacular this area is, was too great a chance to pass up.
Q: So you have had success with video marketing in the past. What was new about the ‘Connect to Your Adventure’ video campaign?
A: We wanted customers to encounter our content just when they needed it the most, at key stages of their buying cycle. We produced a set of videos and competitions that were specifically designed to influence our customers at these times.
A huge step forward for us was in customer retargeting. We have been able to hook people with our hugely catchy and fun 20 – 30 second features and then retarget all of those users with more detailed 55-second episodes. We achieved this mainly through the use of Facebook re-targeting and pixels.
Social media posts that delivered the videos contained location tags, social media and website links to all of the places and activities that featured in the videos posted. This enabled the customer to successfully continue their digital journey.
For those visitors who have spent quality time in Lochaber over the last year we organised competitions promoting user-generated content. This content sharing was incentivised with prizes, encouraging adventurers to share their experiences with us and the world through the hashtag – #myoutdoorcapital.
Entrants to these competitions and newsletter signups received additional content through email and direct messaging on the variety of things to see and do and places to stay and eat.
Q: How was the content for the videos promoting the Outdoor Capital of the UK different to other digital content you see online?
A: We delivered content specifically tailored to the different stages of a customer buying cycle – shorter and more humorous to hook customers at the start, longer when they need more information to facilitate their decision; and other people’s shared experiences when they are looking to affirm their choice. We wanted the Outdoor Capital of the UK to be at the top of mind at all points of the customer journey.
When customers have interacted with the shorter videos, been hooked, we targeted them with the longer more detailed episodes. This ensured that the customers we retargeted ‘are ready’ to receive more detailed information.
Our videos were released in multiple formats – phone/tablet optimised and laptop optimised. The laptop-optimised content was attached to the Map display on the website. The length involved in these formats was also specific ensuring the maximum conversion rate opportunity.
To achieve our objectives of targeting specific audiences with very targeted content we capitalised on digital marketing activity, predominantly Facebook and Instagram, using their custom audience tools.
The Outdoor Capital of the UK
The Outdoor Capital of the UK (OCUK) – http://www.outdoorcapital.co.uk/ – is Lochaber Chamber of Commerce’s tourism element. Under the OCUK brand the Chamber of Commerce publicise, sponsor and promote Lochaber as a tourism destination. The Outdoor Capital of the UK website is the site to go to for local events, activity providers and visitor accommodation in Lochaber.
Through a range of collaborative marketing initiatives and activities the organisation promotes Fort William and Lochaber as the best place in the UK for everyone to experience the outdoors; with a view to developing local jobs and wealth and encouraging sustainable economic growth.
Visitors interested in the outdoors are very important to the economy and community of Lochaber. There are over 65 different activities to choose from in an amazing landscape that encompasses the small isles to Ben Nevis with White Water Rivers, sea, lochs, beaches, forest, glens, cliffs and mountains in between.
For information on the Outdoor Capital of the UK funded project, go to:
- VisitScotland is Scotland’s national tourism organisation. Its core purpose is to maximise the economic benefit of tourism to Scotland.
- The organisation’s core objective is to contribute to the Tourism 2020 Strategy ambition of growing tourism revenues by £1 billion by 2020.
- This will be supported by seven overarching strategies:
- Marketing: we will market Scotland and its outstanding assets to visitors from all parts of the world, including the promotion of Scotland to people living in Scotland to visit different parts of the country
- Events: we will support the national events strategy and its delivery, and sustain, develop and promote Scotland’s international profile as one of the world’s foremost events destinations
- Internationalisation and International Engagement: we will utilise all our platforms to enable Scottish-based tourism businesses to better understand international opportunities and market to a global audience and we will work within One Scotland Partnerships to optimise the potential of Scotland’s Diaspora and our strategic partners at regional, European and global levels
- Customer Experience: we will provide information and inspiration to visitors both locally and globally via their preferred medium of choice
- Quality and Sustainability: we will provide support and advice to businesses, with the goal of improving the quality and sustainability of the tourism sector in Scotland. We will provide quality assurance to visitors through our Quality Schemes
- Inclusive Tourism: we will strive to make tourism in Scotland inclusive and available to all
- Working in Partnership: we will listen to and work with the industry, partners and communities to shape our offering and support
- VisitScotland works together with tourism businesses to make tourism a success for everyone and ensure the industry continues to grow.
- The organisation employs 700 people and has offices and VisitScotland Information Centres across Scotland.
- Spending by tourists in Scotland generates around £12 billion of economic activity in the wider Scottish supply chain and contributes around £6 billion to Scottish GDP (in basic prices). This represents about 5% of total Scottish GDP
- The Scottish Government is the Managing Authority for the European Structural Funds 2014-20 Programme. For further information visit www.gov.scot or follow @scotgovESIF
- For VisitScotland’s press releases go to http://www.visitscotland.org/media_centre.aspx, tourism statistics and frequently asked questions go to http://www.visitscotland.org/
- Where possible, a Gaelic speaker will be made available for broadcast interviews on request (Far an tèid iarraidh, agus far am bheil sin nar comas, bruidhinnidh neach le Gàidhlig aig agallamh)
- For holiday information on Scotland go to visitscotland.com
- For information about business tourism in Scotland go to conventionscotland.com
Year of Young People 2018
- A global first, YoYP 2018 is a part of the Scottish Government’s themed-year programme which focuses on celebrating Scotland’s greatest assets.
- A year-long programme of events and festivals are taking place across the whole of the country for all ages to enjoy, led by EventScotland part of VisitScotland’s Events Directorate. More information at visitscotland.com/yoyp2018
- Local authorities, schools, youth groups and organisations are running their own YoYP
- 2018 activity. Search #YOYP2018 on Twitter for the latest news.
- Young people co-designed the Year. A group of young leaders, Communic18, lead on all key decision making. More than 500 Ambassadors based across every local authority are championing activity.
- The Year is delivered in partnership between the Scottish Government, VisitScotland and EventScotland – part of the VisitScotland Events Directorate, Young Scot, Scottish Youth Parliament, Children in Scotland, YouthLink Scotland and Creative Scotland.
- More information can be found at scot, searching @YOYP2018 #YOYP2018 on Twitter or by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org
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