Here is a roundup of VisitWiltshire's 2016 marketing activity.
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2016 was another extremely busy year for your VisitWiltshire team, who pulled out all the stops to promote the county as the perfect location for day visits, short breaks and longer holidays alike – read on to find out more about what was achieved throughout the year...


• Our website received over 3.3 million page views during 2016, including 900k page views for the Salisbury channel site

• By December 2016 the proportion of website traffic via tablet or mobile device had grown to 65%

• 79 blogs were written and added to the site during the year, 12 with GoPro footage which was introduced in the course of the year

Apps and Newsletters

• Between them, the Wiltshire and Salisbury Apps received over 15,500 downloads during the year

• 16 consumer e-newsletters were sent out, receiving an average open rate of 13%

• Our consumer database rose to over 80,000 names – an increase of 43% in the year


• Our Advertising Value Equivalent (AVE) for the year was over £340k

• We achieved a reach of over 124 million people in the year

• 25 press familiarisation visits were organised, with a total of 36 journalists and bloggers from 8 countries welcomed to the county as a result of VisitWiltshire activity

• 22 consumer/corporate press releases were issued

• We attended the annual VisitEngland ‘Meet the Media’ event in London

• 259 items of press coverage were received, of which 144 were online, 94 in print and 21 on the radio

Visit Salisbury
Campaign (new year)

Digital display campaign: over 2.5k clicks
Facebook carousel: over 6.7k clicks
Competition within leaflet: over 3.1k entries

Made of England
Campaign (autumn)

Digital display campaign: over 3.5k clicks
Facebook campaign: over 9.3k clicks
Facebook video ad: over 36.2k views
Competition within leaflet: over 3k entries
Instagram competition: over 600 entries


• Our joint photography competition with the Salisbury Journal and Newsquest was the most successful to date, with over 370 images entered, an increase of 251% compared to 2015 

• Two photo shoots were undertaken during the first quarter of the year and additional photography purchased from a further 5 photographers, generating a wide range of new images for use online and in print

South West Tourism Growth Fund Activity

During the first quarter of 2016 VisitWiltshire was heavily involved with the £5m South West Tourism Growth Fund activity, leading on the £650k travel trade programme which generated a wide range of valuable international trade opportunities for partners.

A huge amount of work went into raising the profile of Wiltshire (and South West England generally) through a range of activities, the benefits of which will continue to be felt for many years to come:
exhibitions and events; advertising campaigns; familiarisation visits; conferences; training workshops and manuals; maps and itineraries; press and PR; photography and video; a designated South West website; translation of selected pages on the VisitWiltshire and Visit Salisbury websites.

As a result of this activity, some 180 representatives from international tour operators were hosted on familiarisation visits to South West England (of which 90 visited Wiltshire). This included 50 operators who attended a large Showcase South West event, bringing international buyers and suppliers together for one-to-one business meetings, with over 1,250 meetings taking place. Over 1,200 new contacts have been added to a new CRM system.


• An Out of Hours board was produced for display at Salisbury Information Centre

• Three ‘Welcome’ posters were produced in conjunction with South West Trains – two of which are on display at Salisbury Railway Station and one at Tisbury

Social Media

• Followers on Twitter increased by 16.6% in the year

• Likes on Facebook increased by 50.2% in the year

• Followers on Instagram increased by 163% in the year

• Total followers increased to just under 38k

• 5 Instameets were organised in conjunction with IgersWiltshire

• VisitWiltshire ranked highly in the English Tourism Social Media Index, coming 2nd in the South West, 3rd in the county table and 5th overall


• Two stunning new aerial films were launched during 2016, giving visitors to Wiltshire a bird’s eye view of the county

• Between them our two new aerial films and three timeless-themed videos have received almost 470k views to date, with an estimated reach of almost 1.7million people

• All our Wiltshire videos can be viewed here:

Advertising Campaigns

In addition to our core advertising, which received over 13.7k clicks through to our website between January and March 2016, we ran three campaigns linked to our timeless branding.

Each campaign featured a range of media, such as fold out leaflets, digital advertising, Facebook activity, PR, social media, e-newsletters and a dedicated web page.

We are on track to deliver over £1.7million in additional spend as a result of these campaigns.

It’s time for Wiltshire Campaign (late spring)


Digital display campaign: over 4.4k clicks

Facebook video ad: 18k views

Competition within leaflet: over 3.6k entries

Instagram competition: almost 500 entries

Travel Trade

• 7 Groups e-newsletters were sent out, most of them to a database of over 3,000 subscribers

• 7 UK exhibitions and shows were attended: Excursions; Britain & Ireland Marketplace; South West Travel Trade Show; Explore GB; Great for Groups South; World Travel Market; South West Showcase Event

• VisitWiltshire also attended 3 international exhibitions and events representing South West England: Vakantiebeurs, Netherlands; ITB, Berlin; Salon de Vacances, Belgium

• Full page Christmas advertisements appeared in Group Travel Organiser, Group Travel World and Coach Tours UK

• We ran a pan-Wiltshire familiarisation visit at the start of October with 13 travel trade attendees. For the first time we introduced one-to-one meetings, with 22 supplier partners attending. Initial feedback suggests that this event will generate over £250k to Wiltshire in additional direct visitor spend. 

• Seven of the operators and group travel organisers we hosted in 2015/16 have reported making bookings worth nearly £50k to Wiltshire’s visitor economy as a result of our familiarisation visits. The total value of our annual visits programme will be significantly higher than this.

• VisitWiltshire was shortlisted in the 2016 Group Travel Awards, category Best Information Product for Groups

• The number of partners buying into our travel trade package in 2016 increased to 6 Investors, 11 Sponsors and 8 Partners (up from 5 Investors, 9 Sponsors and 6 Partners in 2015)

• The 2017 Travel Trade Guide was mailed out to 4,000 group travel organisers


• 3 main publications were produced: the Time for Wiltshire Visitor Guide, a new-look Time for Wiltshire Visitor Map, and the Group Visits & Travel Trade Guide

• In total, 258,000 copies were distributed

• A new-look Familiarisation Passport was produced for VisitWiltshire partners, offering record potential savings of over £1,000 at fellow partner businesses around the county

Great West Way

£250k Round 1 funding was secured from VisitEngland’s £40m Discover England Fund ( to develop a new long distance touring route which will join up many of England’s iconic destinations and attractions along a corridor west of London through to Bristol. Around a quarter of the route will fall within Wiltshire, offering fascinating experiences for cyclists and walkers as well as those travelling by road, rail or canal.
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