Nessie campaign returns with new monster-hunting tips to lure international visitors

A VisitBritain campaign based on the legend of the Loch Ness Monster is returning with a new set of monster-hunting tips to inspire European visitors to visit Inverness and Loch Ness in the Scottish Highlands outside of the summer season. 

The six-week digital marketing campaign, which gets underway next week in France and Germany, two of Britain’s most valuable and largest inbound visitors markets, and The Netherlands, uses images and videos to showcase the incredible experiences that can only be had in the Inverness and Loch Ness area.

Tips include ‘cover as much ground as possible’ by exploring the area in a campervan, ‘listen to the locals’ on a guided kayak tour and ‘stay as quiet as possible’ while amongst deer and other wildlife in the countryside. 

VisitBritain Director of Marketing Robin Johnson said: 

“Steeped in history and culture and surrounded by breath-taking scenery, the Inverness and Loch Ness area offers an unbeatable holiday experience year-round. By inspiring visitors to book a trip now to come and explore this stunning part of the Highlands – and maybe even spot Nessie – we can spread the economic benefits of tourism throughout the year.” 

VisitInvernessLochNess Chief Executive Graeme Ambrose said: 

“This campaign is a fantastic way to harness the global fascination with Nessie to shine light on all that is great about Inverness and Loch Ness, driving growth and attracting more visitors year-round.” 

The Inverness Loch Ness campaign, launched earlier this year with an initial three-week run, is part of a longer-term plan to grow inbound tourism to the area outside of the traditionally busy summer period.
Just last month VisitBritain hosted 49 of the world’s top travel bloggers in Inverness and Loch Ness when it brought the Social Travel Summit, a global social media conference, to Inverness. 

The Inverness and Loch Ness area is also promoted overseas through visits by international media and travel buyers and with local businesses and destination partners attending international trade events. 

The Inverness Loch Ness marketing campaign is part of the UK Government’s global GREAT Britain campaign, which showcases the very best of what Britain has to offer as a place to visit, study and do business.

The latest figures from VisitBritain show that there were 316,000 international visits to Inverness in 2015, up 21% on the previous year. 

It has been a record-breaking year to date for overall inbound tourism to the UK. July was the highest month ever with 3.8 million visits, up 2% on last July and bringing inbound visits for 2016 so far to 21.1 million, up 2% on the same January to July period last year. 

Last year set a record for inbound tourism to Britain on visits and spend with 36.1 million visits, 5% up on 2014, and spending up 1% to £22.1 billion.