eMinds launches new tech tool for tailor-made itineraries

eMinds launches new tech tool for tailor…

Tuesday, 24 November 2015 08:30

An all-in-one tool that allows operators and agents to create a complex itinerary in a couple of clicks has been launched by eMinds.

2017 barge bookings at 2016 prices from European Waterways

2017 barge bookings at 2016 prices from …

Monday, 23 November 2015 16:00

European Waterways is currently accepting advance bookings for the 2017 season at 2016 prices.

Earn commission on Heathrow Express tickets with Travelport

Earn commission on Heathrow Express tick…

Monday, 23 November 2015 12:30

Travelport has announced that travel agencies in the UK, Ireland and the Nordics can now earn commission on Heathrow Express tickets booked through Travelport Smartpoint.

Fred. Olsen releases five new exotic fly/cruises for 2016

Fred. Olsen releases five new exotic fly…

Friday, 20 November 2015 12:00

Fred. Olsen Cruise Lines is offering guests five newly released exotic fly/cruises in early 2016 on the 804-guest ship Black Watch.

Debut service between Newcastle & Barcelona from Vueling

Debut service between Newcastle & Ba…

Friday, 20 November 2015 08:30

Vueling has announced its first service from Newcastle International Airport to Barcelona for summer 2016.

Free Shrek's Adventure! London ticket with two-night bookings from SuperBreak

Free Shrek's Adventure! London ticket wi…

Thursday, 19 November 2015 12:00

SuperBreak has launched a new free attraction offer in London - the operator’s biggest and greenest deal to date.

New adventures for 2016/17 from Quark Expeditions

New adventures for 2016/17 from Quark Ex…

Thursday, 19 November 2015 08:30

Quark Expeditions has issued its 2016/17, 25th anniversary brochure for adventure travellers.

New easyJet route from London Southend

New easyJet route from London Southend

Wednesday, 18 November 2015 12:00

easyJet has commenced a new route to Lanzarote in the Canary Islands from London Southend.

North Carolina puts film fans in the picture

North Carolina puts film fans in the pic…

Wednesday, 18 November 2015 08:30

North Carolina will be launching movie tours of the state next year, and to promote the new itineraries the tourist board will be holding competitions with the trade.

Black Friday campaign from Funway

Black Friday campaign from Funway

Tuesday, 17 November 2015 12:30

To celebrate this month's Black Friday (November 27) Funway Holidays has put together a selection of holiday offers in its new #bookbyblackfriday campaign.

Manchester Airport welcomes new flights from Hainan Airlines

Manchester Airport welcomes new flights …

Tuesday, 17 November 2015 12:00

Manchester Airport is to welcome the launch of direct flights to Beijing from Hainan Airlines.

Soma Bay unveils Soma Breeze

Soma Bay unveils Soma Breeze

Tuesday, 17 November 2015 08:30

Soma Bay on Egypt’s Red Sea has unveiled its latest residential development, Soma Breeze.

Ethiopia launches new global brand

Ethiopia launches new global brand

Monday, 16 November 2015 12:00

The Ethiopian Tourism Organisation has launched a new global destination brand which will include the launch of a new website in January.

AITO meets with Department for Transport

AITO meets with Department for Transport…

Monday, 16 November 2015 08:00

AITO, the Association of Independent Tour Operators, recently met with new Deputy Director at the Department for Transport, Eirik Pitkethly, just weeks into his role.

Visit Jersey’s new online hub offers taste of ‘Jersey winter experience’

Visit Jersey’s new online hub offers tas…

Friday, 13 November 2015 15:00

Visit Jersey has launched its ‘Escape to Jersey’ winter campaign, designed to give UK city dwellers a taste of the pleasures of Jersey, during the winter time.

Brand Britain is stepping on the gas. In the run up to next year's double-header of the Olympics and the Queen's jubilee, the country's tourism boards have recently announced a spate of marketing pushes designed to get overseas tourist bookings flooding in. Things kicked off with something of a false start back in August, with a celebrity-fronted campaign by Visit Britain. However, as a direct effect of the recent unrest and rioting that occurred in British cities Visit Britain was led to pull overseas advertising of its new campaign, which featured such national treasures as Dame Judi Dench and Jamie Oliver.

Reacting with admirable speed, Visit Britain stated that they would monitor the tone and extent of media coverage abroad and allow the advertising to return to the overseas market when it feels the situation has calmed. Recent events already appear a little distant and are not expected to recur and but it is still too early to predict the real effect on tourist levels.

Next off the blocks came Visit England - announcing its biggest ever marketing push, which is planned to land next year in conjunction with the Diamond Jubilee celebrations and, of course, London 2012 to capitalise on a sense of national pride. It's important of course not to ignore that the reputation of the country can also have been damaged among its own residents, and given the recent growth of the 'staycation', the UK's own residents may need to be given reasons to celebrate and holiday in their own country, as well as overseas audiences.

Taking the bronze on launch is David Cameron's newly announced Great Britain campaign – focused on attracting overseas tourism. Again, this one leverages the celebrity angle to communicate the message of Cool Britannia 2011, employing Henry VIII, Branson, Cambridge, Wallace and Gromit. There's even mention of The Beatles. To my mind, it's a shame that the campaign focuses on such well known overseas British icons rather than the less celebrated tourist attractions which make the country such a vibrant destination. If people already know what you have and choose not to come then telling them again about the same stuff, in self congratulatory mode too, probably won't cut it.

Personally, I'm not convinced that I'm not sure that £500,000 spend will do much when the intention is to bring in four million visitors from across the globe; £500k won't even buy a dozen full pages in major US newspapers. The audience for this is undoubtedly the audience that are disenchanted with the financial situation here in the UK. Judging from comments on the Daily Mail website from readers 'makes you proud to be British' and 'This is a Great campaign! Britain was Great, and still IS.' They may be working – at least on the home front. But to get four million Americans to come to the UK, I remain unconvinced.

Given the country tourism boards are now carrying the torch for Britain both overseas and domestically, it is however critical that all travel brands benefitting directly or indirectly from UK tourism look to boost their investment in marketing now – otherwise cut-through may well be lost in the noise. In particular, this activity needs to show how Britain not only delivers quality service across a range of cultural and entertainment areas but does so at a price that is competitive with the rest of Europe and indeed the world. Any short changing on spend and a reliance on Visit Britain, Visit England or the government itself to save the UK's tourism revenues is both short term and short sighted.

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