Our marketing and sales programs are developed to move the consumer along the path to purchase and to book travel to Canada now by delivering new, unique and compelling travel experiences. Whether we launch an integrated marketing campaign, attend travel-trade shows or bring media and destination partners together to exchange stories, our initiatives target three major audiences.
The UK’s 2013 consumer direct strategy is focused on integrated advertising campaigns over various media channels (such as print, cinema, online, SEO and social media) in partnerships with key provincial/territorial, city and small/medium-size tourism enterprises. Campaigns target the UK’s priority Explorer Quotient®(EQ®) types, Free Spirits and Authentic Experiencers, who pose the best potential for conversion.
Our consumer direct strategy is aligned with our travel trade and PR/media relations channels to optimize our influence across the various stages of the path to purchase. The strategy utilizes the latest research findings such as Global Tourism Watch and our 2012 conversion study. Insights from both CTC in-market teams and key industry partners aid media and channel planning to ensure we optimize our conversion prospects.
CTC-UK’s fall consumer campaign will launch late October and run to mid-December across cinema, print and online. This is a brand-centric campaign, with other elements to help consumers develop their itineraries. The “Canada Shared” creative will run in cinemas to inspire and raise awareness while dynamic, bespoke online content will engage Brits and the consumer website will focus on Canadian Signature Experiences(CSE) and trip ideas. Social-media cultivation will bring additional traffic through Facebook and other social networks.
The 2014 planning cycle commenced mid-2013. Briefings for 2014 campaigns will take place after the publication of the Global Sales, Marketing and Communications Plan in September. Details of partner opportunities will be available late fall. We plan to launch activity for spring 2014 in January.
CTC-UK deploys quarterly e-newsletters throughout the year to maintain, grow and engage the consumer database. The content consists of recent media stories, upcoming promotions and, where appropriate, partner offers. CTC-UK selects content based on its appeal to our priority EQ target segments.
CTC-UK trade development targets wholesalers, online/direct-sell operators, retail travel trade and home workers.
We collaborate with tour operators to develop innovative marketing programs and promotions to increase the profile of Canada and incorporate EQ-friendly product. We also support trade familiarization (FAM) trips and manage the Canada Specialist Program(CSP) to provide the trade with effective tools to sell Canada.
Canada Specialist Program
The Canada Specialist Program provides online destination training for all frontline staff in the UK plus a variety of activities and promotions to keep Canada top of mind.
Participating frontline staff members are offered a range of information and support, including:
- Online training modules and exams with instant results
- Official certificate
- Selling tools, including branded display materials
- Familiarization (FAM) trips and invitations to training events
- Training manuals
- Quarterly e-newsletters
- Discounted rates for travel to Canada.
CTC-UK also plans exclusive promotions with tour operators aimed at Canada Specialists.
Every year we bring groups of UK buyers to Rendez-vous Canada to expand their Canada travel program and experiential products. CTC-UK is also responsible for organizing Canada’s strong presence at the World Travel Market trade show.
For details on these events and more, check out our Trade Shows & Events.
CTC-UK assists the media with partnered press trips, media events and media hosting on visits to extraordinary Canadian destinations. Our strategy is to gain visibility in the UK media by staging partnered media events and pitching targeted story ideas to media influencers..
Explore Canada Visiting Journalist Program
In 2013, CTC-UK has continued to work with partners to host group media FAM (familiarization) trips to showcase skiing in the winter, Newfoundland and Labrador in the summer and the Prairies in the fall. We also hosted several individual media FAM trips with top national media outlets. We continue to focus on encouraging TV production companies to consider Canada, and a major 13-part cross-Canada culinary adventure series featuring a British chef is filming this fall.
UK media events
The CTC hosted more than 50 media at the Canadian Signature Experiences(CSE) event at Canada House Feb. 28. We also partnered with Travel Alberta, Tourism British Columbia and Tourisme Québec to create ski/winter content in March, which we used to promote winter activities, including skiing, to British ski and snowboard writers at a summer lunch. Eight British media took part in CTC’s GoMedia Canada Marketplace, held annually in Canada. GoMedia 2014 will be held in Winnipeg, MB, Aug. 17-21.
Other annual UK media events in London include hosting ski media around the time of the Metro Ski & Snowboard Show (October), plus travel media at World Travel Market (November), the premier global event for the travel industry. At WTM, we are hosting a media event for bloggers on the Wednesday evening, as well as inviting regular travel writers to join us at the “Happy Hours on the Stand” on the Monday and Tuesday evenings.
We will also be hosting a table at the British Guild of Travel Writers Awards event in November for some of our key media contacts and some new contacts. For the second year running we will support the British Annual Canada Travel Awards (BACTAs), which take place mid-December in London. We are also inviting media and PR reps to submit entries to the BACTAs; all finalists and their relevant editors will be invited to the BACTAs event.
These networking events help maintain and develop media relationships and position Canada top of mind.
We continue to engage with travel bloggers. We have seen excellent results from our 2011 and 2012 investments in building blogger relationships, measured by the number of quality UK bloggers who have taken part in blogger projects so far in 2013. We are focusing on food bloggers this year and supported a food-blogging conference in London this July by inviting a well-known British food blogger to talk to the attendees about her travels across Canada.
Web seeding and radio syndication
CTC-UK seeds UK-relevant Canada footage onto UK websites, with a focus this year on winter/ski footage. Filmed in April 2013 across Quebec, Alberta and British Columbia, the clips are being seeded to UK website from September onwards. We also continue to work on a series of syndicated Canada
CTC-UK continues to work with UK trade publications and supports Canada editorial with advertorial features, including three “How to Sell Canada” guides published with Selling Long Haul. We also ensure that there are regular Canada round-ups of news throughout the year in other trade publications such as ABTA magazine, Travel Trade Gazette, Travel Weekly and online distributor Travelmole. This year, we hosted one travel-trade writer at Rendez-vous Canada2013 in Ottawa, ON, May 12-15.
|Inbound travel to Canada from the United Kingdom|
|Overnight trip to Canada (000's)||887.8||841.9||893.9||836.9||685.7||659.4|
|Year to year change||10.8%||-5.2%||6.2%||-6.4%||-18.1%||-3.8%*|
|Year to year change||11.7%||-7.8%||6.9%||-3.5%||-24.5%||-9.5%|
|Source: International Travel Survey, Statistics Canada.|
· The UK is Canada’s largest inbound overseas market. However, the Eurozone debt crisis in 2011 and the UK’s fragile economic performance of 0.2% GDP growth continued to have a significant impact on consumer confidence and outbound travel demand. (Source: Oxford Economics)
· In 2012, the number of UK overnight visitors to Canada fell 4.1% to 597,000 trips. The largest drop came from travel for other purposes, followed by business travel. Pleasure travel and those visiting friends and relatives represent 79% of all UK arrivals to Canada.
· While arrivals during Q1 (+0.2%) and Q4 (+0.1%) held steady, they declined in Q2 (-10%) and Q3 (-3.3%), which are when two-thirds of UK visitors choose to travel to Canada.
· Total overnight spending by UK visitors contracted 1.4% to $784.5 million, while the average spend per trip increased 2.8% to $1,314. UK visitors stayed longer (13.9 nights, +2.7%) while keeping spending per night constant ($94, +0.1%).
· Though travellers aged 55 and over represented the largest segment (40%) of all visitors in 2011, their numbers declined 11.8% in 2012. The youth travel market (aged 24 and under) saw a 29.5% increase in arrivals.
Source: Statistics Canada, International Travel Survey, unless otherwise indicated.All Statistics Canada numbers are preliminary.
During a Canadian holiday, British visitors want to experience the Canadian way of life, see Canada’s unique cultural attractions, try soft-adventure activities and socialize with Canada’s friendly people.
Canada offers a sense of familiarity, along with a beautiful natural setting and a unique balance of city and nature experiences. Still, Canada remains a "someday destination" for many British travellers. By further evoking Canada’s authentic and extraordinary travel experiences, the CTC is inspiring British travellers to visit Canada now.
Guided by the CTC corporate strategy, the UK strategy focuses on high-yield travellers: consumers who spend more, stay longer and are less influenced by exchange-rate fluctuations and market pressures.
Market development activities
· BEC attended the inaugural version of The Meetings Show at London’s Olympia July 9-11, joined by more than 3,500 attendees. The event was partnered by Tourism Toronto, Tourisme Montréal, Halifax World Trade & Convention Centre, Ottawa Convention Centre, Ottawa Tourism, Ontario Tourism, Palais des congrès de Montréal and The Westin Bayshore Vancouver.
· The annual Oysters summer party showcased BEC, Tourism Toronto and Travel Alberta. More than 250 UK buyers attended.
· Destination Halifaxran their annual Halifax super FAM trip for three buyers, one media client and one BEC staff member July 11-14.
· BEC attended the C&IT agency forum, taking part in 16 face-to-face meetings and two nights of networking opportunities Aug. 7-9.
· Incentive Canada took place on August 16-19, 2013. The first international all Canadian workshop/FAM trip in Kelownahad nine international buyers.
· BEC planned a two-day sales mission with Destination Halifax followed by a hosted event at Jamie Oliver’s Big Festival for six clients plus colleagues and partners.
· BEC’s annual summer event and sales week included 10 Canadian partners, who attended a large networking evening with UK buyers. BEC was joined by Starwood Hotels of Toronto,Tourism Toronto, Travel Alberta,Fairmont Royal York,Québec City Tourism, JPDL,Tourism Montréal, Zeste Incentive and The Westin Bayshore Vancouver.
· Various individual sales calls and phone calls during Q3 2013 generated 25-plus leads.
Current trends and market considerations
As 2013 progresses, events, conferences and incentives are back on the agenda for a number of companies and associations. BEC continues to tackle short lead times and it remains crucial to respond to an enquiry within 24 hours, with 12 hours being the optimum response time.
International associations anticipate major growth in meetings.Nearly a third of international associations will be hosting more meetings in 2014, according to a survey conducted by IMEX and ICCA. The survey, conducted by the International Congress and Convention Association (ICCA) and IMEX in Frankfurt this year, polled 92 international association hosted buyers and found that almost 30% of associations will be running more meetings in 2014 than in 2013. Of those surveyed:
· 77% are organizing meetings for more than 500 delegates in 2013, and more than 17% organize events for more than 5,000 delegates.
· Fewer than 7% plan to organize fewer meetings in 2014.
· Almost 47% are projecting higher attendances than in the previous year (40% in 2012), compared with almost 9% who expect their delegate numbers to fall (10% in 2012).
· When asked if the continued global economic turbulence had any negative impact on their association and/or events in 2013, almost 57% answered yes. In 2012, the percentage was 60%.
· More than 32% reported higher attendance for their 2013 events than in previous years (4% more than in 2012 and 2011), 37% indicated no change (38% in 2012), 24% reported slight reductions (31% in 2012) and less than 7% reported a significant fall in numbers (3% in 2012).
Overall, the survey suggests a positive forward forecast despite continued challenging economic conditions. This trend was confirmed earlier this year with the release of the 2012 ICCA rankings for cities and countries, (highlighted below) when ICCA reported another year of continued strength in the international association meetings market.
Martin Sirk, ICCA CEO, said: “ICCA has been tracking international associations for half a century, so we’re absolutely convinced of the long-term dynamism of this market sector, but obviously the uncertain and volatile financial and economic environment of the last five years has had an impact on delegate numbers and sponsorship support for many association events. It is great news to see that the sector has regained its optimism, and we anticipate that associations will become increasingly important in every destination’s meetings mix.”
Carina Bauer, CEO of the IMEX Group, added: "We have been tracking and working closely with the association sector, together with ICCA, for over 10 years, and even through the economic turbulence of the past few years, the sector has remained resilient and cautiously optimistic. It is good to see the sector continuing this upward trajectory and beginning to display a slightly stronger confidence level. For our exhibitors and for the meetings industry as a whole, this is great news.”
Media coverage to date in Q3 is currently valued at CAD $87,739.
UK industry update
· Bluehat Group has appointed three of its staff members to work on accounts that include Vodafone, Nestle and Pepsico.
· Adding Value has recruited seven new staff members following a series of major business wins with BT, Vodafone and Peugeot.
· Grass Roots has unveiled its new event management board ahead of its plans to rebrand in September.Grass Roots' four events businesses (HBI, DMS, Eventcom and Live) will be realigned as one legal entity and rebranded as Grass Roots Meetings and Events.
· According to the Amiando Report, which surveyed 1,500 international event organizers, more than 80% of event organizers plan to increase their social media use this year with Facebook, Twitter, Google+ and LinkedIn.
· Australia is becoming an increasingly attractive event and incentive destination for the Asian market. In the last financial year, Asia represented 50% of the tourist market in New South Wales, with half of that number coming from China.
· UK events associations held their first collaborative meetingwith representatives from ISES, Eventia, MPI, HBAA and other UK events organizations. They have begun planning for the International Festival for Business 2014—the first of its kind in the industry.
· Motivcom managing director Nigel Cooper has advised that the IT, telecom and retail markets are showing growth as optimism slowly returns.Motivcom's P&MM has grown and its service level has risen to an extent that it is now winning business previously unattainable.
· Imagination has retained its contract with Jaguar Land Rover, in a deal believed to be worth around £60-80 million.Six other agencies, including two US-based outfits, pitched for the three-year deal, which includes the organization of brand areas at various global events.
· Ovation Incentives, a UK incentive marketing company, has opened its first overseas office in Chicago, following major growth in the US.
· Indesit will return to major incentive trips in 2014 following a 35% uplift in sales this year from smaller incentive events.
· W&O has reported an increase in gross profit in 2012 of £3.4 million.
MP Adam Afriyie believes the UK Bribery Act should be rewritten to allow businesses to make “facilitation payments” when abroad. While illegal in the UK, these payments are legal in many competing developed countries, including the US. “This puts UK SMEs at a severe competitive disadvantage. It is very hard to operate in a country where facilitation payments are the norm. Indeed, this is why many companies have decided not to operate in such countries,” said Afriyie.
Contact our team
Canadian Tourism Commission
15 Bermondsey Square
London SE1 3UN
· peters [dot] rupert [at] ctc-cct [dot] ca (Rupert Peters)
Regional Managing Director, Core Markets
· hawes [dot] paul [at] ctc-cct [dot] ca (Paul Hawes)
Marketing Manager, Core Markets
· fournier [dot] nicolas [at] ctc-cct [dot] ca (Nicolas Fournier)
Manager, Travel Trade
· singh [dot] nim [at] ctc-cct [dot] ca (Nim Singh)
Manager, Media & Public Relations
· parrish [dot] claire [at] ctc-cct [dot] ca (Claire Parrish)
Marketing Coordinator, Core Markets