October Destination Marketing Snapshot

MRBTA members have reported a positive spring school holidays and strong forward bookings for the summer season, but outside of this, the next few months appear more unpredictable and we will continue to be responsive to members needing support over this time.

Nationally, the tourism industry was buoyed last month by the announcement of Tourism Australia’s next iteration of its Holiday Here This Year campaign featuring homegrown favourites Hamish Blake and Zoe Foster Blake.

Please reach out to the marketing team if you have any questions, niggles, or general feedback that you’d like to chat through. We welcome content pitches across the year.

Contact: Sophie Mathewson, Acting Marketing & Communications Manager | sophie.mathewson@margaretriver.com

Marketing Snapshot Overview

Campaigns

For an update on recent campaign work, view here

Insights

  • Klook: Prior to covid-19, the Margaret River Region did not have a presence via Klook and only one or two activities were listed under Perth. The region now has a page on their site after significant work by Pip Close working with the OTA. There is now an opportunity for members with bookable products to get listed. Members can onboard their product by filling out this form.
  • Urban List: Urban List unveiled research around the new Australian consumer. See how the events of 2020 have shaped how Australians think and feel, and how marketers should be using this data to engage with them.
  • Boost With Facebook Tourism: Catch up on webinar sessions that support small businesses improve digital skills in the tourism industry.
  • Tourism with Facebook and Instagram 101: This session explores the recent shifts in the travel preferences and behaviours of Aussie consumers, and Facebook Community Trainer Dante St James follows-up with a 101 skills workshop, covering topics such as account basics, crafting creative for mobile, increasing discoverability and tips for fostering direct connections. Link here to slides from the presentation outlining the Top 5 shifts within the tourism industry today.

Media

Media coverage across October included:

Expressions of Interest for December Content

December blogs can be registered with the marketing team by Monday November 9th Blogs scheduled are:

  • X New Experiences this Summer
  • Explore: Downtown Dunsborough
  • The Ultimate Margaret River Region Gift Guide

Blog inclusions are FOC for all members until the end of 2020 calendar year.  You can also buy-into the Seasonal Summer Itinerary for $199. Register by Monday November 9th.

Contact Acting Marketing & Communications Manager,  sophie.mathewson@margaretriver.com with your EOI

Paid Advertising

Please get in touch with the membership team for paid opportunities such as web ads, TV advertising in the Visitor’s Centres, or a top listing on margaretriver.com. Email: membership@margaretriver.com

Photo By: Russell Ord Photography

October Content

New Blogs

73 members were featured across 7 new blogs curated by the MRBTA in October.

Visitation to blog stories on margaretriver.com are up 38% (29K pageviews this month compared to 21k for the same period last year).

We have also commissioned some walking trails blogs that will be uploaded to our new website and look forward to sharing those with you. These are nature-based trails allowing visitors to read a general guide about the walk, access images and view an embedded map.

Members are encouraged to share new content with their own audiences via

  • social media
  • a link on your booking confirmations
  • your electronic newsletters

Magazine Update

Our regional print publication was paused in April 2020 when the the covid-19 related business closures impacted the region. Preparation for the 2020/2021 summer magazine would have commenced in August this year, but at that time we held concerns about beginning the production of a magazine while the industry was still experiencing so much uncertainty with the end of the JobKeeper scheme, staff availability issues and fluctuating visitation. We did not have confidence to support content in a print publication which may become inaccurate throughout the December-February period, and we did not wish to encourage Premium Publishers to be seeking advertising (which is required to make the publication viable), when businesses were experiencing high levels of uncertainty and financial hardship.

We will continue to be responsive to visitors over summer through content distributed via margaretriver.com, Visitor Centres and Central Reservations, and our Margaret River Region social media channels.

Looking forward, we are intending to go ahead with the next issue of the magazine to be released in Autumn 2021.

Monthly EDMs

Monthly newsletters to consumers and media have maintained high engagement in October. The industry benchmark for Travel & Leisure is an open rate of 15.7%.

  • Consumer Newsletter  Sent to over 30k subscribers. 30% open rate (compared to 25% in 2019) , and 15% click-through rate.
  • Media Newsletter Sent to over 260 media contacts. 28% open rate (compared to 24% in 2019), and 12% click-through rate.

We love knowing about new things!  We regularly pitch angles to media so keep us informed of any new products or developments in your business.

Web and Social Stats

Website

October has indicated a levelling off of traffic to margaretriver.com in line with the end of the school holiday rush, with sessions nevertheless increasing by 4% to 112k. Recent consumer travel sentiment data from Tourism Australia also indicates that consumer demand for travel is stabilising.

The Augusta township landing page is up 55% and made the top 10 landing pages on margaretriver.com this month. Restaurants & cafes landing page is up 57% and breweries, cideries & distilleries up 38% in comparison to 2019. There is a strong desire for consumers to research and visit your establishments. We encourage you to review your business listing and login to the MRBTA member console to ensure your listing is up to date, including trading hours.

Visitation from Perth Audiences is up 34% in comparison to 2019, and contributes to 78% of all website visitation in October.

Social Media

Top performing content during throughout the 30 days campaign included Caves, Lighthouse, Busselton Jetty, Boranup and Aquatic themes.

View campaign activity here.

Podcast Stats

Our regional podcast Wine Unearthed, has reached over 5000 downloads. The podcast was produced as part of International Wine Tourism Grant funding in 2019 in collaboration with Australia’s South West, South West Development Commission, and the Margaret River Wine Association. We encourage members to share the quality podcast with visitors to the region. It’s available on Spotify & Apple Podcasts.

Spring / Summer Image Library

We encourage members to access our spring image collection here and continue to share inspirational visuals of The Margaret River Region. Please always credit the photographers when using images.

Photo: Jinna Yang

Event Support

  • MRBTA supported the Busselton Festival of Triathlon in October. Marketing staff provided support through website content (homepage banner, dedicated blogs and event landing page), consumer and media electronic mail and video advertising on the ground at the event. In 2021 they celebrate 25 years with event confirmed for 1 & 2 May.
  • Margaret River Region Open Studios reported extremely positive results for their September event. We will update you with post event report details once received.
  • Karnidale (WA Circus Festival) has been cancelled for 2021 and plans to recommence in January 2022.

Do you have a major event coming up? Reach out to Caron Reynolds, Marketing Coordinator for event partnership support. Contact: Caron.reynolds@margaretriver.com

What’s Coming Up?

  • Brand launch: Our brand evolution has been happening behind the scenes and will give the region’s towns further identification and individualised branding. We look forward to being able to share some details with you all prior to Christmas.
  • Website launch: The marketing team are busily working behind the scenes on a new look website which will launch alongside the branding work.
  • New TV Screen Ads: TV screen ads in the Busselton, Dunsborough, and Margaret River Visitor’s Centres and Augusta Digital hubs will be refreshed for summer. Please contact membership if you wish to purchase a TV screen ad. Contact: membership@margaretriver.com