Building on the refinement and the successes of our marketing strategy from FY2014-15 of utilizing seasonal campaigns, FY2015-16 has seen further refinement to experiences focused campaigns highlighting our major experience categories Beer, Wine & Culinary (BWC), Waterfront, and Birding. The campaigns geographically targeted primarily proximity drive markets including bordering US markets, Michigan, Ohio & Western NY, and Southern Ontario markets outside of Ontario’s Southwest including Kitchener-Waterloo, Guelph, Niagara, Oakville, Brantford, Hamilton, and the outer Greater Toronto Area (GTA). The secondary target geographic markets were the GTA and within Ontario’s Southwest.
The two major experience campaigns, Beer, Wine & Culinary and Waterfront, make up the bulk of marketing in 2015/16 along with a smaller campaign focused on Birding that will launch in early 2016. The campaign tactics for both major campaigns include mostly digital advertising tactics such as Google, Audience Targeting System display advertising, Facebook & mobile, micro-websites, media relations, E-blasts, social media, and more; plus additional tactics unique to the individual campaigns.
Beer, Wine & Culinary (BWC) Campaign
The BWC campaign was centered around branding Ontario’s Southwest as the “up & coming” region to discover great craft beer, wine & culinary in Ontario. The major tactic utilized was to target influencers who would spread the word to their circles of influence. To help accomplish this, 15 bloggers will visit the region and experience the region’s fantastic BWC experiences first hand and write articles to share with their networks and on the newly developed region micro-website. Additionally, a BWC pop-up event was also held in downtown Toronto to bring some of the region’s amazing beer, wine & culinary right to the heart of the GTA and have influencers and media along with other foodies to taste the regional flavours.
- OSWCulinary.com Micro-website
- OSW City Fare Pop-up Event
- Bloggers – Foodie 15
- Digital Ads
Building on the successes of the 2014 Build a Better Beach Vacation campaign, in 2015 the Waterfront campaign became more focused on promoting the family friendly, unique, and best-in-class beaches of Southwest Ontario to the target market of young families from close proximity drive markets in Ontario & near border US. The popular Free Standing Insert was again utilized and distributed in major dailies to provide a compelling story of the region’s waterfront in carefully targeted markets and the Partner Offers program returned to help move consumers through the product purchase cycle and refer qualified customer leads to regional tourism partners.
- BestBeachesOntario.com Micro-website
- Free Standing Insert
- Bloggers – Yummy Mummy Club
- Digital Ads
- Facebook Ads
- Gardiner Expressway Digital Board Ad
- Video (See below)
For FY 2015-16 a campaign focused on the Birding experiential category was created. The campaign was focused on developing an engaged audience of consumers with a propensity to travel for birding experiences. The campaign was split into two flights, a fall flight focused on driving sign-ups to a new database of consumers interested in birding experiences as well as wildlife viewers and outdoor enthusiasts. No OSW birding interest database segment existed before the campaign. This new database of consumers interested in birding experiences will be utilized for a spring 2016 birding campaign flight highlighting the region’s unique birding experiences.