Sharing our cultural city

Avanti campaign: sharing our cultural city, the Team Glasgow way

Sharing our cultural city through consumer marketing has long been a partnership effort, with Glasgow Life and VisitScotland joining forces in a variety of ways to get the biggest bang for our collective buck. One recent example achieved great results by expanding the scope of activity on a Glasgow campaign with Avanti West Coast, which ran from March to May.

VisitScotland developed an innovative marketing campaign with Avanti to boost mid-week tourism to Glasgow from London, using a mix of new Glasgow videos and social media ads driving traffic to a campaign page at – plus an in-person augmented reality experience showcasing some of the city’s most popular attractions.

Presented with the message that ‘Glasgow is calling’, some 8,800 shoppers at the Westfield Shopping Centre in Stratford engaged with the ‘Magic Mirror’: an AR experience that transported them virtually to Glasgow by train, then whisked them to sites including Kelvingrove Art Gallery & Museum and Ashton Lane, and into the crowd at a gig at Barrowland. Watch the video to see how they reacted.

Through the relationship with Glasgow Life, the campaign was able to achieve a much greater impact through their investment in additional activity. This was scheduled to start ahead of the VisitScotland programme, thereby preparing the ground by raising awareness about what cultural Glasgow has to offer.

Glasgow Life’s investment expanded the reach of the campaign through:

  • A publishing partnership with NewsUK, which included an article in The Times on the reopening of The Burrell Collection, with a guaranteed 10,000 views.
  • Digital display advertising on the and and Facebook Instant Experiences on The Times’ Facebook channel
  • Paid social media video ads, promoted via Facebook, showcasing cultural experiences in Glasgow and directing visitors to

The parallel campaigns resulted in 37,000 rail journeys to Glasgow during the campaign period – a 15.1% increase on the two previous rail periods.

Working together on the Avanti campaign was a great example of the economies of scale that can be achieved through our shared responsibility for supporting tourism in Glasgow.

How media partnerships are reaching UK visitors

Glasgow’s music scene, food and drink, visitor attractions and shopping have been promoted through VisitScotland media partnerships with NewsUK and Stylist. A digital campaign created for The Times Travel included an interactive map allowing readers to make a virtual trip to Glasgow, exploring shopping streets, live-music venues including the Royal Concert Hall and King Tut’s, plus parks and summer events. Glasgow-based influencer @foodthirst created a Glasgow taste tour video for the Times travel Instagram channel, visiting Sorisso Café, Eusebi’s Deli and Hooligan. The Stylist partnership included direct email, Facebook and Instagram content highlighting Kelvingrove among ‘Five reasons to make Scotland your next visit’.

Take your pic! – choose from the latest city photography

Brand new, high-quality photography (see selection below) of The Burrell Collection, Pollok Country Park, Queen’s Park, Ashton Lane and The Lighthouse is now available for businesses to download and use free of charge from VisitScotland’s Digital Media Library.

New content is regularly added to the image library for you to use on your websites, social media and other marketing activity, and further shoots in Glasgow are planned this year, including new drone photography. These images are available royalty-free on our Digital Media Library.

Next page: Building on events