Marketing and PR Update

Festival of Short Walks - Debrief

The inaugural Festival of Short Walks, held in October this year was a campaign designed to promote our walk product to a key target market. Whlst the actual Festival was held in October the campaign began on September 2 and had three key objectives:

  1. Marketing – increasing brand awareness, of destination and the Festival of Short Walks brand.
  2. Business Development – supporting the development of new, permanent, tourism walk products.
  3. Industry Engagement – strengthen and grow industry engagement across the Shire.

The 2019 campaign has delivered a range of results that have exceed projections. Here are the top line results.

  1. Social Media – through Facebook and Instagram, the Festival of Short Walks reached an audience of over 900,000 people. The audience was primarily from Melbourne and within our region. We now have an engaged audience of over 5,000 that we are able to retarget on social media.
  2. Partnership and collaboration with Tourism North East and industry was successful in building partnerships that delivered the program and the marketing campaign. Across the 7 day festival, 32 businesses came together to deliver a diverse and inclusive program of short walk events. This included events that had 3 or more businesses working to deliver a single event. Aligning our strategic goals with those of industry is a strong mechanism to deliver to the community.
  3. The ‘walk’ tourism product will remain a focus for Indigo Shire to develop and promote. A focus is product development in order to have walk products available to visitors 365 days a year. 

    Beechworth industry have developed a food and wine walk ‘Slowly Consumed’ and a wellness walk experience, whilst a series of walks are being developed around Lake Moodemere in Rutherglen. Please contact Council if you would like to discuss ideas.

Council is pleased with the outcomes of the 2019 Festival of Short Walks, and the Tourism Development team have started working on plans for 2020 and is looking forward to improving the concept based on the strong foundation built this year.  

View the Festival of Short Walks debrief video here.

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Destination Websites Analytics

Explore Beechworth Facebook

Objective

Metric

KPI

Actual

Brand Awareness

Reach

(Baseline)

21,849

Brand Advocacy

Engagement

(Baseline)

14.5%

Fan Acquisition

Increase Likes

2.5%

3.44%

 

Explore Beechworth Instagram

Objective

Metric

KPI

Actual

Brand Awareness

Reach

(Baseline)

16,465

Brand Advocacy

Engagement

(Baseline)

73%

Fan Acquisition

Increase Likes

2.5%

4%

 

Explore Rutherglen Facebook

Objective

Metric

KPI

Actual

Brand Awareness

Reach

(Baseline)

37,349

Brand Advocacy

Engagement

(Baseline)

134%

Fan Acquisition

Increase Likes

2.5%

4.38%

 

Explore Rutherglen Instagram

Objective

Metric

KPI

Actual

Brand Awareness

Reach

(Baseline)

24,576

Brand Advocacy

Engagement

(Baseline)

83%

Fan Acquisition

Increase Likes

2.5%

Unknown

 

Explore Chiltern Facebook

Objective

Metric

KPI

Actual

Brand Awareness

Reach

(Baseline)

18,229

Brand Advocacy

Engagement

(Baseline)

125%

Fan Acquisition

Increase Likes

2.5%

6.9%

 

Explore Chiltern Instagram

Objective

Metric

KPI

Actual

Brand Awareness

Reach

(Baseline)

853

Brand Advocacy

Engagement

(Baseline)

189%

Fan Acquisition

Increase Likes

2.5%

61%

 

Explore Yackandandah Facebook

Objective

Metric

KPI

Actual

Brand Awareness

Reach

(Baseline)

8,506

Brand Advocacy

Engagement

(Baseline)

63%

Fan Acquisition

Increase Likes

2.5%

7.2%

 

Explore Yackandandah Instagram

Objective

Metric

KPI

Actual

Brand Awareness

Reach

(Baseline)

1,358

Brand Advocacy

Engagement

(Baseline)

95%

Fan Acquisition

Increase Likes

2.5%

Unknown

 

In September of this year, Council implemented the first action of the digital media refresh. This saw four standalone destination social media profiles either be created or rebranded using both Facebook and Instagram platforms. Each destination has a local social media ambassador that collaborates with Council in content delivery ensuring that the platforms are delivering visitor focused content demonstrating the unique local identity of the destination.

This first report will be used to create a baseline in terms of success measures and will be used to develop KPIs in each objective: brand awareness, brand advocacy and fan acquisition. The KPIs will be presented in the next quarterly update.

Social media continues to offer exceptional value for money in reaching target markets and building destination loyalty. So, let’s work together to increase online conversations and build an engaged audience for your destination.

WHAT CAN YOU DO BUILD THE DESTINATION PROFILE:

  1. Tag @explorerutherglen, @explorebeechworth, @exploreyackandandah and @explorechiltern
  2. Add #rutherglen #beechworth #yackandandah and #chiltern where relevant to the destination
  3. Share stories to your page, making sure the destination hashtag is included
  4. Like, comment and share posts

Each morning, Council’s tourism team searches the #hashtags to see what content is suitable for sharing. This has helped grow our audiences, has increased engagement rates, and has increased positive online conversations.

Explore Beechworth

Explore Beechworth continues to perform well, experiencing a growth of over 20% in Users, Sessions and Pageviews. The top viewed pages after the homepage was Woolshed Falls, Asylum Ghost Tours Beechworth and Burke Museum and Historic Precinct.

The demographics of the visitors to the website are aligned with the identified growth market for Beechworth, with 24% being aged between 25-34 years. Over 50% of Users are accessing the website via their mobile phones, demonstrating the importance of creating content and site design that is optimised for mobile.

Explore Chiltern

Explore Chiltern has experienced significant growth in Users, Sessions and Pageviews of over 150% compared to the same period in 2018. The top viewed pages after the homepage are: See and Do, Accommodation and Chiltern Arts Prize.

Explore Rutherglen

Explore Rutherglen saw a quartile decrease of 3.5% in Users for the same quarter of 2018. When analysing the data, there was a significant decrease in Users during July and August and then there was positive growth in September that aligns with the timing of the commencement of the Festival of Short Walks marketing campaign. Updating seasonal content that is aligned with social media campaigns has resulted in much better visitation than those experienced in July and August, therefore creating relevant content must be a priority to continue growing visitation to the Explore Rutherglen website. The YTD data for Rutherglen remains positive despite negative growth during Q1 2019/20, primarily due to activity post September.

Explore Yackandandah

Explore Yackandandah has experience negative growth for Q1 2019/20 and is on track to have negative growth for the year 2019. Strategies have been put in place to halt the negative growth and drive positive visitation rates to the website. These strategies are: delivering tourism event and product social media campaigns with supported paid ads to increase referral traffic to the website, commencing on the 9th December for the Yackandandah Christmas Gift Guide campaign, and also updating the Explore Yackandandah with seasonal content that aligns with social media messaging to create a better online journey for visitors.

Share Your News

We can’t wait to hear about your new initiatives, innovative products and seasonal visitor experiences. Tell us your human interest stories and share your successes. Please feel free to send us your news so we can create ongoing media stories, rich content for our websites and social media channels to create a vibrant online destination presence.