Generating positive PR and improving perceptions

Building relationships with influencers
Showcasing our nations and regions
Improving perceptions
Our readers consume 65% of our coverage digitally. In 2015/16 we used that insight to reach a new audience and encourage them to visit

Reaching new audiences, improving perceptions, securing coverage to inform and inspire visitors to explore our nations and regions – our PR activity over the last year has seen us champion the best of Britain in international media and the best of England nationally.

Showcasing the nations and regions to influencers, bloggers, broadcast and print media

Example of instagram post We honed in on opportunities to promote Britain’s tourism offer from press trip firsts to new partnerships, expanding our audience to maximising shared moments of celebration. Across digital, TV, radio and print, we generated over 12,500 pieces of coverage on Britain, reaching a potential global audience of billions. 99% of the articles were positive in tone and 90% of all coverage delivered at least one of our key messages.

In today’s digital democracy, online content has a very real impact on people’s decisions to travel. 65% of our coverage is consumed through digital channels and in 2015/16 we used this insight to grow our sphere of influence, reaching new audiences and encouraging them to explore the nations and regions of Britain.

As a key strand of our delivery, over the last year we worked with more bloggers, YouTubers and instagrammers than ever before.

Multiple projects such as the international #OMGB campaign have seen us work with influencers to experience our product, share amazing moments with their audiences and create content for integration on our campaign sites and marketing.

Social Travel Summit in InvernessFollowing our hosting of some of the world’s top travel bloggers at the Social Travel Summit in Inverness, more than 250 images and blog posts have reached an estimated 5 million people worldwide.  These images and stories showcase not only Inverness, but the nations and regions where some of the influencers spent time post summit, on personalised itineraries to maximise exposure for Britain across their audiences.

Broadcast, newspapers and magazines as well as online travel and lifestyle websites remain key outlets, helping us to connect with target audiences in our international markets.


Magazine article on ShakespeareKey events and anniversaries, which this year included the Queen’s 90th Birthday, the 400th anniversary of the death of Shakespeare and the 150th anniversary of Beatrix Potter, have provided us with opportunities to promote Britain’s nations and regions internationally. The last 12 months has seen 25 group trips for prominent media across a wide range of international markets. On top of that, our visiting journalist programme brought 800 international media professionals and influencers to our shores and the stories we shared led to over 12,500 articles with a total opportunities to see of 19.2 billion.

Our PR teams have also supported our strategic and commercial partnerships too. From longstanding, successful relationships with the Premier League and British Airways, to collaborations with Visit Wales for their Year of Adventure, Visit Scotland and Festival Edinburgh as part of #OMGB and Northern Ireland for their Year of Food and Drink, we partnered up to deliver successful trips across Britain, securing coverage which bolstered key messages and drove engagement. This included international press, TV, radio and digital as well as triggering a significant increase in followers on our social media channels too.


Through our media centre, international press could access:
  • Over 200 story ideas, averaging three a week
  • Monthly newsletters with news highlights
  • Quarterly themed newsletters
  • Updated guides on music, heritage and food, top tens and story ideas
  • B-roll footage, short films and free-to-use images


Plus domestic press had access to:
  • Timely and newsworthy press releases, capturing news and trends from around England
  • Access to monthly updates on the latest openings, anniversaries, the latest events and festivals in England
  • B-roll footage, short films and free-to-use images of England
Italian magazine spread featuring Shakespeare
Shakespeare coverage in Italy
The Social Travel Summit in Inverness
South West feature in Germany
South West feature in Germany

Creating an appetite to explore England

Magazine spread on English gardensFrom iconic locations to major events, this year we focused on celebrating England’s character to entice domestic visitors through 2,000 pieces of coverage with an opportunities to see of 1 billion. We also ran our first ever dedicated bloggers’ press trip, resulting in one of our most successful social media campaigns - with St George’s Day retweets hitting 10 times their usual level and the VisitEngland Facebook page generating its highest ever number of click throughs.

Marking the 300th anniversary of landscape architect Capability Brown, the Year of the English Garden campaign shone a spotlight on England’s gardens and events. Dovetailing with our industry engagement and a digital campaign, our PR activity included a high profile launch event at Kensington Roof Gardens, group press trips and a presence at Chelsea Flower Show. As a result, we have secured 432 articles to date across TV, radio, print and digital contributing to the campaign’s goal of inspiring additional or extended overnight visits during 2016.

We also ensured the Year of the English Garden connected with international audiences. From events in the Paris and Berlin Embassies as well as press group trips for French, German and Dutch media resulting in over 30 articles published to date, to the filming of a France 2 TV dedicated garden mini-series, our PR activity supported the campaign’s wider objectives and helped ensure a legacy for the Year of the English Garden.    



The Year of the English Garden PR in numbers
  • 60 print, digital, TV and radio journalists and 40 destinations attended our launch event
  • 30 top tier media attended our Chelsea Flower show event
  • 432 pieces of coverage secured


From Shakespeare and Beatrix Potter to Charlotte Brontë, in the last year, literary anniversaries and adaptations chimed with a national audience too, so we seized the opportunity to maximise coverage for English tourism – hosting group and individual press trips for titles including the Sunday Express, Mail Online and the Sunday Times.

Screenshot of Swallows and Amazons on VisitEngland.comPartnering with Studio Canal and Cumbria Tourism, we showcased the destination behind the film release of Swallows & Amazons. Our activity included group press trips to Cumbria for high-profile journalists from titles including The Times, The Sun and Radio Times, as well as creating a topical hub on hosting information on adventure breaks in England. The campaign generated over 12,000 page views to our hub, as well as 866 competition entries and 62 media clips.

We also secured a new partnership with Disney and Egmont publishing to capitalise on the publication of the Poohsticks Handbook, and we ran top-tier media trips for preview screenings of The BFG to mark Road Dahl’s centenary.

We secured 432 articles across TV, radio, print and digital, contributing to the Year of the English Garden’s goal of inspiring additional or extended overnight visits during 2016.