Newquay Business Improvement District (BID) is working hard to promote Newquay as a top holiday destination all across the UK, having achieved nearly £100k of positive press coverage in national and regional publications since September 2011.
A key part of the BIDs brief is to positively and effectively promote Newquay through PR and marketing activity that enhances the town’s image and public perception. To this end, the BID has worked with Newquay-based communications agency Excess Energy since 2011 on a programme of strategic PR activity to help promote the resort as a key holiday destination and manage its reputation in the national and regional press.
The BID has worked hard to tackle the resort’s negative reputation amongst the national media, creating a serious sea-change in both media and consumer perception. It has invited over 30 key journalists to visit the resort for strategically planned press trips that showcase the best of what Newquay has to offer, resulting in an overwhelming wave of positive national media coverage. Publications are specifically chosen whose readers include families and couples that match the demographic of visitors that the BID is keen to attract to the resort.
In total, over 25 successful trips took place between September 2011 and December 2013, resulting in impressive editorial coverage in key media and lasting relationships with journalists. Activity is well underway for 2014 with four trips having already taken place in January with many more being arranged. This year the BID has targeted top regional publications in areas within a three hour drive of Cornwall such as Gloucestershire, Somerset and Exeter; as well as locations linked to flight routes including Scotland and the South East; and other key regions such as Manchester and the North West.
The BID invites journalists to visit specifically in the early parts of the year, avoiding peak season. The aim is to attract visitors to the town in the months when Newquay is less crowded and extend the trading period throughout the year. The pieces cover a range of different angles, from activity breaks to romantic weekends, relaxation sessions to family holidays. These trips are supported by a range of BID businesses across the town that provide complimentary hosting to the journalists in exchange for a mention in the piece.
Publications that have written about Newquay recently include glossy magazines like Chat, OK and Woman’s Own; national newspapers like the Sunday Mirror, Daily Express and The Sun; as well as high circulation regional publications like the South Wales Echo, Scottish Sun, Bath Life, Liverpool Echo, Western Gazette, Nottingham Post and the Oxford Times. Quotes from the pieces they have written include:
I’d heard [Newquay] was busy, bustling and famed for stag parties and surfing. What I found was completely different.’ – Will Johnston, Leicester Mercury
‘[A]way from the hustle and bustle…there is another side to Newquay that offers serenity, culture and a truly special atmosphere.’ – Sophie Taylor, Plymouth Herald
‘I soon discovered that there is more to Newquay than just summer sun…In fact, it really is an all year round destination with much to offer.’- Jessica Bell, Bolton News
The BID has also strategically placed striking destination adverts nationally and regionally, including the impactful and iconic London Underground campaign which ran in 2012 and 2013. The BID commissioned tube adverts with stunning visuals of Newquay’s beaches which ran across 25 key tube stations during the summer enticing commuters to visit the resort for a breath of fresh air. This activity is in addition to a constant social media presence managed by the BID which spreads positive messages about Newquay across the UK and worldwide.
Emilie Calhaem, BID Manager says: “Having a positive media relations campaign to engage the national and regional press is a key part of the BIDs strategy to encourage more visitors to the town by showcasing all that Newquay has to offer as a holiday destination. Working with our PR company, the BID has been tackling negative perceptions head on and proactively managing the town’s reputation out of county in an impactful and effective way.
“We are keen to show visitors that there are plenty of wonderful things to do in Newquay during the winter and spring months in an effort to drive valuable footfall to the resort during low season. It is also a great opportunity for local businesses to gain coverage in key national publications. Any businesses who are keen to get involved in hosting journalists should contact us here at the BID on 01637 498599 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.”