Go catch more Pokémon in LA

Go catch more Pokémon in LA

Tuesday, 26 July 2016 13:00

With Pokém...

Neilson launches its first booking site for agents

Neilson launches its first booking site …

Tuesday, 26 July 2016 11:00

Neilson has launched a dedicated online booking site providing UK travel agents with the tools to promote and sell Neilson holidays.

Festive short breaks with Funway Holidays

Festive short breaks with Funway Holiday…

Tuesday, 26 July 2016 09:10

Funway Holidays has put together a selection of special pre-Christmas themed short break holidays.

Saga embarks on five country trans-African adventure

Saga embarks on five country trans-Afric…

Monday, 25 July 2016 14:44

Saga Holidays has put together a 26-night adventure combining Kenya, Botswana, Zimbabwe, South Africa and Ethiopia in a single ‘Ultimate Africa’ trip.

Santiburi celebrates £20 million renovation with new family package

Santiburi celebrates £20 million renovat…

Monday, 25 July 2016 11:00

Celebrating its 25th anniversary and re-launch after a £20 million renovation, Koh Samui's Santiburi Beach Resort & Spa has launched a new family package.

My Emirates Pass lands in Dubai

My Emirates Pass lands in Dubai

Friday, 22 July 2016 11:00

Emirates Airline passengers can experience more of Dubai this summer with discounts and exclusive offers available across the city with the ‘My Emirates Pass’, launched jointly with Department of Economic...

New Year, New You with HF Holidays’ 2017 Mindful Retreats

New Year, New You with HF Holidays’ 2017…

Friday, 22 July 2016 08:00

HF Holidays has unveiled its new selection of breaks to see in the 2017 New Year in style.

Cruise & Maritime Voyages extends BOGOF deal

Cruise & Maritime Voyages extends BO…

Thursday, 21 July 2016 14:00

Cruise & Maritime Voyages (CMV) has announced an extension of its current ‘Buy One Get One Free’ deal until the end of July, as well as a new promotion.

Ride the waves with Haven this summer

Ride the waves with Haven this summer

Thursday, 21 July 2016 11:00

Haven is promoting stays at its coastal parks this summer, where guests can learn to ride the waves with their paddle-board and surf school.

Journey into the volcano and glacier with Taber’s new short break

Journey into the volcano and glacier wit…

Thursday, 21 July 2016 08:00

Taber Holidays is offering a three-night break to Reykjavik complete with new optional excursions; ‘Inside The Volcano’ and ‘Into the Glacier’.

Diamond Holidays launches new break to Wales

Diamond Holidays launches new break to W…

Wednesday, 20 July 2016 14:00

Diamond Holidays has introduced a new four-day break for 2016, taking in Snowdon, Anglesey and Puffin Island.

Gear up for a summer trip to remember at The York Dungeon

Gear up for a summer trip to remember at…

Wednesday, 20 July 2016 11:00

The York Dungeon has been completely revamped from bottom to top, with new scripts, sets and state-of-the-art special effects following a £1million investment.

P&O Cruises announces Strictly themed cruise dates for 2017

P&O Cruises announces Strictly theme…

Wednesday, 20 July 2016 08:00

P&O Cruises announces Strictly themed cruise dates for 2017 Strictly Come Dancing is back on board P&O Cruises in 2017 for more performances across the Med and Baltic.

InsideAsia launches interactive travel maps

InsideAsia launches interactive travel m…

Tuesday, 19 July 2016 14:00

InsideAsia Tours has developed a set of animated ‘Step Inside’ digital maps, enabling travellers to explore Japan, Burma, Vietnam, Cambodia and Laos and serving as a source of inspiration sales...

Larnaka campaign focuses on return visitors

Larnaka campaign focuses on return visit…

Tuesday, 19 July 2016 11:00

Larnaka Tourism is using its famous mascot, the Great Flamingo, to front its new ‘They always come back’ campaign, which highlights the various activities holidaymakers can enjoy whist visiting the...

New ‘Essential Collection’ of value adventures from Titan

New ‘Essential Collection’ of value adve…

Tuesday, 19 July 2016 08:00

Titan has broadened its choice of escorted tours with the introduction of a new ‘Essential Collection’ of travel adventures.

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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