TV adverts help worth of Great Yarmouth’s tourist economy exceed �500,000,000
A television advertising campaign helped Great Yarmouth's tourist economy top �500,000,000 for the first time ever this year.
Financial data about the borough's tourist economy was sourced by VisitEngland, the Office for National Statistics and the Labour Force Survey.
It was analysed by Tourism South East using the Cambridge Economic Impact Model, which examined the volume and value of tourism and the impact of that expenditure on the local economy in 2010, and the exact value of the economy was recorded as �501,358,000 this year.
And yesterday more than 100 influential industry figures gathered at Hemsby's Lacon Arms to hear plans to exceed the half billion benchmark even further in 2012.
These centre around the launch of a website aimed at mobile phone users which will help entice people to events and venues in the borough - the website is www.great-yarmouth.mobi
Mobile phones accounted for 3.49pc of visits to Great Yarmouth's existing tourism website in 2010 - this has more than trebled to 10.4pc this year.
Tourism bosses see a future in appealing to people who use the internet on their phones, and have reminded people that tourism is the main employer in the borough and so should be the focus of investment.
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Charles Reynolds, the borough council's cabinet member for tourism, said: 'Let us never lose sight of the fact that tourism is this borough's greatest industry.
'It's been a challenging time and will continue to be a challenging time, but when the going gets tough the tough get going.'
Investment in a 30 second television advert which aired 311 times in January and February saw web hits in March up by 65,000 on March 2010 and online bookings up by �130,000.
The advert for Yarmouth was seen by 3.4 million people in the Yorkshire and Central TV regions and helped to encourage seven to 14 night stays.
A second commercial aimed at day trippers was aired in the Anglia North TV region in June, and resulted in 117,000 more web hits in July and August than the same period in 2010. Tourism bosses hope to build on this new media success for 2012, but have also stuck to tradition by launching the paper 2012 Greater Yarmouth Holiday and Short Break brochure yesterday. This will be circulated nationwide, providing a welcome boost to the 9,551 people employed in the borough's tourism industry.