December 8 2013 Latest news:
Stephen Pullinger, Tourism correspondent
Wednesday, September 18, 2013
The Norfolk tourism industry is to launch its first ever autumn and winter campaign aiming to boost the out-of-season visitor economy by an estimated £1m.
From October 7 - for a 12 week period - Visit Norfolk will run an advertising campaign across the on-demand TV platform ITV Player as well as outdoors on rail platforms at the two London stations servicing Norfolk, Liverpool Street and King’s Cross.
The campaign concept, which promotes the idea that ‘There’s nowhere like Norfolk’, has been created by Norwich-based integrated marketing agency The Point.
“The objective is to raise awareness of Norfolk as a destination that’s great to visit at any time of the year,” said Visit Norfolk brand manager Pete Waters.
“Our coast and countryside are great places to explore; you can do Christmas shopping in Norwich and our market towns; the best time to see wildlife such as seals and migrating birds is in the winter and our pubs, restaurants and tea rooms serve unequalled local, seasonal food and drink.
“Another big out-of-season draw is our heritage, history and culture, particularly our museums, the Thursford Christmas Spectacular, and world-class exhibitions such as Masterpieces: Art and East Anglia at the Sainsbury Centre of Visual Arts. These are things that can really help grow the visitor economy.”
The £50,000 of funding for the initiative comes from Visit Norfolk’s partners, which include Visit Norwich, Great Yarmouth Tourist Authority, Broads Tourism, Visit North Norfolk and Norfolk Tourist Attractions Association as well as West Norfolk and South Norfolk district councils.
Mr Waters said he believed the campaign would represent “best value for money for what is a moderate sum”.
He said: “Other counties enjoy much larger budgets but that is public sector funding and in the current financial climate it’s sensible that Norfolk goes a different way. Our model is to engage businesses and secure more private sector investment for marketing the county’s overall tourism offering. If Visit Norfolk isn’t self-sustaining by Spring 2015 that may well be the end of destination promotion for the county.”
The Point’s creative and managing director Ian McKinnon-Evans said: ”We’re thrilled to have been appointed following such a competitive pitch process.
“This was a campaign brief with a big ambition that demanded a simple but scalable creative idea married to a highly cost effective media solution. This win affirms our belief in the importance of great creative ideas; giving Visit Norfolk the spring board they need to begin engaging a wider audience with the county’s brand.”
‘There’s Nowhere Like Norfolk’ also seeks to drive consumer traffic to the revamped visitnorfolk.co.uk website which aims to excite would-be visitors about the wide range of holiday, short break and day trip opportunities in the county.
The campaign launch coincides with Visit Norfolk’s first end-of-season EDP-supported conference on October 7 at the John Innes Conference Centre.
The event will include educational sessions and workshops, as well as speakers including Hoseasons managing director Simon Altham, BeWILDerwood’s Tom Blofeld, Visit England Enterprise Director Jenny McGee and head of Visit Cornwall Malcolm Bell.
“Visit Norfolk’s latest business confidence monitor shows that the priorities for Norfolk tourism are improved brown signage, better Broadband coverage for the county, and more marketing for the county,” said Visit Norfolk acting chairman Andrew Hird. “As the official voice of tourism for Norfolk we can lobby on the first two issues; on the third, at a time of reduced public sector spending, we rely on tourism organisations working with us. If Norfolk’s largest industry sector is to grow, then we need to pull together and our conference provides a stepping stone for that. It’s going to be an unmissable event.”
Visit Norfolk has also awarded a PR contract to London-based Paul Gogarty, a former senior travel writer with the Daily Telegraph, with the intention of increasing reporting in national newspapers and magazines of Norfolk as an attractive year-round tourist destination.
Details of the all-day conference can be found at www.visitnorfolk.co.uk/Tourism-end-of-season-event-2013.