As a growing body of research confirms, people increasingly want to spend their money and leisure time on experiences.
That offers a great opportunity to the tourism sector. The only challenge is the amount of competition – there are a lot of visitor attractions offering a huge range of wonderful experiences.
So how do you get your message out there, and bring in more people? Ahead of the National Attractions Marketing Conference 2019, which Qa Research is sponsoring, we took a look at some of the strategies that have worked for venues across the UK.
1. Diversify your offer
The National Memorial Arboretum in Derbyshire enjoyed a busy 2018, and it is planning to build on that this year. Its team has put together a remarkably diverse programme of events aimed at engaging new audiences, from Paws For Remembrance for dog lovers to a summer proms.
2. Go global
It may be a relatively small attraction in a Yorkshire market town, but that hasn’t stopped the World Of James Herriot launching a Russian version of its website. The show is still a popular staple TV in Russia – so this digital welcome mat makes complete sense.
3. Think big
It was the Post Office archive with 3,000 visitors a year. After an ambitious reinvention the Postal Museum is a huge family hit, with 200,000 visitors in its first year, all keen to ride the Mail Train. It was a risk, it took vision – and it has paid off.
4. Refresh and renew
The Picture Library at Leeds Art Gallery offers Yorkshire residents the opportunity to borrow original works of art to enjoy at home. But by 2009 the ‘service had become ragged’. After a major fundraising campaign both the art and the scheme were refreshed. The result? A big boost in visitor numbers and income generation up by 1,000%.
5. Surprise people
Arguably the holiday park and campsite sector has not been valued as much as it should have been in the past. Not any more. The UK Caravan & Camping Alliance has commissioned the first ever report into the economic benefits of the sector, which found it generates more than £9bn in visitor spending.
More on this topic
- Growth of visits from China helps boost UK tourism confidence
- Five great tourism initiatives that have attracted Chinese visitors
- Learn more about the future tourism experience at these two events
- The future tourism experience: what is right for your attraction?