Sharing our cultural city
Bringing visitors to Glasgow with global travel partners
Global Expedia partnership: Glasgow hotels and attractions were promoted to UK and international markets on dedicated landing pages on Expedia and Hotels.com websites as part of VisitScotland’s partnership with Expedia.
Globally, this marketing activity resulted in $32.6 million in gross bookings and 147,000 room nights to Scotland from visitors who saw and engaged with the campaign and website pages. Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum was among the top performing creative content.
Direct routes to Glasgow: Flying direct to Glasgow was also promoted through new marketing activity by VisitScotland in partnership with Expedia and Skyscanner. Banner adverts with popular Glasgow attractions including Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum were displayed on Expedia and Skyscanner’s websites, driving online users to dedicated website pages within the sites with route information and destination inspiration of what do in when in Glasgow.
Glasgow Life Expedia campaign results
Following the launch of the awareness phase of VisitScotland’s global partnership, Glasgow Life launched a targeted marketing campaign with Expedia aimed at converting a warmer audience who had been served VisitScotland adverts in phase one.
Implemented across three of Glasgow’s core international markets - USA, Canada and Germany - the campaign aimed to inspire visitors to consider a future trip to Glasgow and to help drive the recovery of the city’s visitor economy following the pandemic.
The campaign was designed to broaden awareness of the variety of cultural experiences visitors can enjoy as part of a trip to Glasgow as well as reinforce the message that the city’s tourism and hospitality industry is open for business.
Potential visitors were directed to dedicated ‘Glasgow Hub’ landing pages on Expedia’s website, which promoted airline tickets, hotel offers and several of the city’s visitor attractions and activities.
The results of the campaign showed a strong return on investment and demonstrated that the motivation for travel from key inbound markets is returning.
return on ad spend
Glasgow hotel stays boosted through US marketing
Glasgow received 51.1% of room nights booked from customers who engaged with VisitScotland content in our most recent North American partnership with Expedia. This was among a number of recent content partnerships, also including those with AFAR, Culture Trip, Matador, Thrillist and Uproxx. On Uproxx’s Scotland page, a full article was dedicated to exploring Glasgow’s food scene and nightlife, and the highest performing editorial was about Scotland’s festivals, which listed TRNSMT among the top five festivals to go to this year.
Team Glasgow pulls together for WestJet success
This spring saw an unprecedented marketing push on the Canadian market, thanks to a superb example of our tourism partners aligning activity to deliver for Glasgow.
Glasgow Airport, Glasgow Life and VisitScotland worked together to coordinate their respective marketing efforts to capitalise on the opportunity of WestJet’s new and returning route launches, which combine to provide daily flights from Canada into Glasgow.
Driven by the priority to support the return of international markets, VisitScotland invested $450,000 CAD in a campaign in Canada to promote travel to Glasgow and Edinburgh, based on WestJet’s returning Halifax-Glasgow route and two new routes from Toronto into both Glasgow and Edinburgh. This leveraged a similar marketing spend from WestJet to drive bookings.
On top of a consumer campaign based on social media, TV sponsorship and partnership with Expedia, the VisitScotland team coordinated a programme of engagement in Toronto with travel trade partners and travel media. Events included Scotland destination training, tour operator sales calls, media engagement, a Scotland networking reception and gateside activity at Toronto Pearson airport.
Scotland campaign results:
Clicks (1.29% CTR)
Meanwhile, Glasgow Life activity was focused on display and social media adverts, with budget being split 65% across primary (Toronto) and 35% on secondary markets (Calgary, Vancouver, Edmonton, Winnipeg and Ottawa - one-stop flight access via Toronto).
The campaign creatives (below) developed by Glasgow Life also featured across Glasgow Airport and WestJet’s channels.
Glasgow Life campaign results
Clicks, CTR 0.09%
Pollok Country Park in National Geographic
The Burrell Collection, Pollok House and Invisible Cities tour guides were featured in a stunning photography spread, Scotland: Reframed Gallery on the National Geographic website showcasing some of Scotland’s hidden gems. Through a paid partnership with VisitScotland, National Geographic featured Pollok Country Park as a ‘rare beauty’, and recommends combining the trip with a walking tour of lesser visited parts of the city from Invisible Cities, a social enterprise which employs trained guides who have experienced homelessness. The Glasgow content attracted 29,882 views in a dwell time of over five minutes.
Reconnecting Glasgow with the world travel trade
In April, more than 20 Glasgow businesses including The Clydeside Distillery, Mackintosh at the Willow and the National Piping Centre, came together with almost 300 international tour operators and travel agents from 21 global markets to attend Discover Scotland: Reconnect, VisitScotland’s virtual travel trade event, part of activity to rebuild international tourism demand.
Businesses were provided with support to tailor their product offering to meet that market demand, aligned with Glasgow Tourism and Visitor Plan priorities.
In September, VisitScotland will host in-person familiarisation visits, Discover Scotland: Live 2022, to complement the virtual event.
Working with UKinbound, Glasgow Life welcomed tour operators and destination management companies, interested in booking Glasgow, to a virtual familiarisation trip. The virtual visit provided an opportunity to update on new bookable city experiences including the reopening of The Burrell Collection, City Sightseeing Glasgow's new music tour and Virgin Hotels imminent opening of their Glasgow hotel. New promotional tools were provided to support travel trade intermediaries in their sales and marketing of Glasgow. Attendees were also treated to a flavour of Scotland by way of a tasting session with the Clydeside Distillery.
“More and more buyers are wanting to promote Glasgow to their clients which is great for us.”
Gillian Morrison, The Glasgow Food and Drink Tour