The national tourist board has invested £30,000 in a software tool to help it manage and monitor its work with social media influencers.
Recently released government procurement information reveals that the British Tourist Authority (BTA) – which primarily operates under the VisitBritain brand – last month signed a one-year deal with Brandwatch for a “social influencer platform”. The deal will be worth an initial fee of £31,080.
In response to a request from PublicTechnology, BTA said the tool would support its growing work with online influencers based in the UK and overseas. The technology system will allow the authority to identify influencers, verify the authenticity of their online followings and help assess “brand alignment” with VisitBritain.
Once relationships are established, the tool will allow the tourism board to “track influencer content and results in real time, providing deeper insights into the performance of influencer activities and confirming that they are responding.” to the objectives of the organization”.
VisitBritain’s previous work with influencers included an international campaign called ‘Welcome to Another Side of Britain’ which launched earlier this year. The initiative saw the BTA work with 12 online personalities with global followings, who collectively visited eight cities across the country and participated in different local activities.
“Four groups of three influencers discovered two cities during the week-long trip, creating videos and stills for their social media, highlighting new and exciting experiences to come and enjoy right now, promoting immediacy to visit and showcasing vibrant British culture,” the BTA said in a statement to PublicTechnology. “Influencers were contracted to deliver 250 pieces of content, which could be repurposed across VisitBritain-owned channels, in return for content creation fees and curated experiences during the trip, to reach 20 million unique accounts, generate 30 million impressions and 700,000 engagements. ”
The authority said that this initiative was nominated for two awards and that online influencers “now play an important role in the business of BTA’s paid and owned channels, helping it reach new audiences across multiple platforms. social media”.
“The aim of working with influencers is to create authentic and engaging content to convert inspiration to visit Britain into bookings and prompting to visit immediately. It also helps expand travel routes, spur tourism growth in all countries and regions and throughout the year, including shoulder seasons,” he added – referring to the period between peak seasons and off season for travel. “Influencers are also engaged to increase the reach and awareness of key events, destinations and products to achieve immediacy targets and create content for use across VisitBritain’s channels.”
Procurement records indicate that Brandwatch’s tools for tracking and managing social media activity are used by a wide range of government departments and other public agencies. His deals include a separate £48,960 one-year contract – for a “social media monitoring and analytics service” – awarded by BTA in July.