As we’ve entered the ‘reset’ phase, with the non-essential travel ban still in place, our marketing teams have continued to keep Scotland in the front of potential visitors’ minds. They've been building advocacy and trust, so that when those countries are able to travel again, we're at the top of their wish lists.
With a strong ‘Only in Scotland’ and 'dream now, travel later' message, we've looked to inspire and whet the appetite for Scotland through engaging articles, blogs, activities, videos and images that are sure to leave a lasting impression…
Following the launch of our ‘Absence makes the heart grow fonder’ video, our virtual hug to the world which was viewed over 1 million times in the first two weeks, we've looked to find ways of keeping Scotland at the forefront of people’s minds while also helping to support health and wellbeing.
A hub for inspirational content on VisitScotland.com was developed with everything from wildlife webcams and ways to enjoy Scotland at home via film, tv, podcast and literature, to activities for kids and a look at Scottish culture, including ceilidhs and Scots terms, has been created. So far this section of the consumer site has received over 10,000 organic views to date, with plans to further promote over the coming weeks.
Never before have we appreciated Scotland's great outdoors so much! But as we look to travel a little further and explore a little more, it's important to remember that our open spaces may look a little different now and we need to behave a little differently when we visit them. We’ve added tips and advice on how to enjoy these spaces responsibly on VisitScotland.com.
Ongoing content planning focuses on the ‘restart’ phase when lockdown is gradually lifted. A number of different possibilities are being considered but mainly we're concentrating on local travel restrictions being lifted which will mean, in the first instance, people are able to venture slightly further from home for daily exercise. This will be targeted directly at Scottish consumers and centre on days out ideas with health and wellbeing continuing to be an important factor of any trip.
We've been reaching out to our 1.5 million database of friends around the globe. Firstly, we extended the hand of friendship to our subscribers and acknowledged the crisis situation, letting them know how we wanted to communicate with them in the current climate.
The response was overwhelming with over 300 personal messages of hope and support demonstrating the love out there for Scotland and the desire to visit us when the time is right. Many of the responses also gave us suggestions for the type of content they’d like to see more of such as videos, imagery and stories to help get them through isolation at home. And we listened.
We’ve continued by sharing ‘Ways to Experience Scotland from Home’ with links to our new interactive Sounds of Scotland as well as our Tour Guide Tales videos and 100,000 Welcomes podcast episodes.
We followed up with 'Scotland on screen' including live webcams and support to Go Rural’s spring farm footage and another edition called 'Scottish Gems we think you’ll love' with 'Magical locations to dream about’ – both versions highlighting films and literature that will keep people thinking about trips to Scotland alongside things to listen to, getting toes tapping and imaginations flowing as well.
Next week (beginning 25 May) some customers will be treated to light content about Highland coos and even Nessie origami whilst others will get immersed in Scottish culture.
Through our core global consumer social media channels (Instagram, Facebook and Twitter) we resumed posting daily from 3 April with the launch of our ‘Absence makes the heart grow fonder’ video, including subtitled versions for key markets. The sentiment of the video was well received demonstrating that Scotland is still in the hearts and minds of our audience, despite not being able to visit right now.
The tone and wording of our social posts – both main channels and European in-language Facebook pages – have changed to reflect 'dream now, travel later' messaging and focusing on bringing Scotland to your home. In China, where life is slowly returning to normal with demand for domestic travel and short trips, there is an increasing appetite for travel, leisure and lifestyle content.
We've looked to share inspirational long-lead ideas with the 'dream now, travel later' message across our Weibo and WeChat channels, while engaging with hot-topics that are trending such as ‘Don’t Miss Out on Spring’ – our post so far has received over 12,000 views.
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Our marketing team is hosting a webinar on Thursday 28 May for top tips on marketing your business right now. Learn how to continue to remain in the minds of your customers, gain new fans and be visible when visitors start thinking about booking again.