CTC News

Competitive intelligence: lifting the lid on Canada’s tourism rivals.

New series uncovers the campaigns, promotions and other activities involving major tourism destinations. First up: CTC’s mature markets.

16 May 2012

The Internet and social media mean that we are all, including the tourism industry, in the era of big data. As part of extracting value from the information swirling in cyberspace, CTC News begins a new series showing what Canada’s tourism rivals are up to in markets around the world.

Our colleagues, general sales agents and friends on the ground in these markets are sending the latest intel to be distilled into these monthly bulletins. First in the queue are the Canadian Tourism Commission (CTC)’s core markets: Australia,France, Germany, the UK and the US.

  • Tourism Australia has been dipping into the UK youth market. A competition earlier this year, in conjunction with UK student website Student365, had the carrot for one young travel writer of being part of an April press trip Down Under, including Sydney, the Blue Mountains and the Great Barrier Reef.
  • VisitBritain has taken a leaf out of Canada’s book in its recent ads around Paris. The tag line “Grands Espaces” would surely be more appropriate to describe Canada’s natural wonders. The multi-million-pound campaign hopes to highlight the UK around the world in the run-up to the 2012 Summer Games in London and the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee.
  • VisitScotland is thinking big. A new global marketing campaign, featuring stars such as Billy Connolly, Emma Thompson and Robbie Coltrane, looks to bring the tourists to the UK’s north. As part of the campaign, VisitScotland is running TV ads on US screens (small and large) for the first time in 12 years, hoping that a partnership with the Walt Disney Company to promote the animated movie “Brave” will bring home the bacon.
  • The Singapore Tourism Board has its eyes on snapping up Aussie travellers. A major destination marketing campaign, including cinema ads as well as experiential, digital and social-media activity, rolled out in March.



  • Tourism New Zealand is taking a keen interest in the youth market. A recent column by Justin Watson, general manager of Marketing Communications, focuses on specific strategy targeting youth in the UK, Germany, US and Canada as the biggest opportunity. To back it up, Tourism New Zealand’s new digital and social-media activity, Stories Beats Stuff, offers youth the chance to trade in something material for the chance to win “one of six experiences of a lifetime.”
  • A five-part documentary series is heading for TV screens in Germany and France, the result of a partnership between Tourism New Zealand and a local production company. “New Zealand from Above” showcases Kiwi country through aerial footage, scenic flights and interviews with the locals.
  • According to a recent story in fvw magazin, there was a record number of German travellers in the US in 2011: 1.8 million, up 5.7% on 2010. Germany is the third-largest overseas market for the US after Japan and the UK. The US aims to top the two-million mark by 2014.
  • In Germany itself, double-digit growth by visitors from China, India and Brazil sparked another record year for incoming tourism in 2011. Overnight stays by foreign visitors rose 6% to reach 63.8 million, reports the German National Tourist Board.

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