The Northern Ireland Tourist Board (NITB) is reviewing its £1m advertising account. It is not clear if the organisation has an incumbent agency.
It is understood that the account will include two seasonal campaigns in the spring and autumn, product-specific work – for example promoting golfing and fishing holidays – and other campaigns in conjunction with the Republic of Ireland.
The NITB already works closely with Tourism Ireland, and since 2002 the island has been marketed as a single destination in many countries.
Tourism Ireland operates offices in 14 key markets, and provides focused marketing through NITB in the domestic market.
Since the 1998 ceasefire agreement and the success of the subsequent peace process, the region has developed its tourism industry and Lonely Planet listed Northern Ireland as one of its “must-see” destinations in 2007.
Northern Ireland’s tourism market relies heavily on the short-break market, and in 2006 half the region’s visitors were short-break takers from within Northern Ireland or from the Republic.
The Northern Irish Government’s programme for 2008 to 2011 has set the tourism industry targets, including increasing visitor numbers by 25% and revenue by 40%.
The tourist board is developing five “signature” projects for the region and “world-class” visitor experiences at key tourist destinations. These include the Walled City of Derry and the coastline around the Giant’s Causeway.