Newport Beach loves England, and England loves Newport Beach judging by the success of Newport’s 2015 UK marketing campaign that drew more than 50,000 people to our city.
Last winter, Visit Newport Beach launched the “Picture Perfect” campaign, which featured a clear-sided truck with the campaign’s brand messaging “Picture Perfect” on the exterior and a large beach motif inside complete with real sand, lounge chairs, tropical plants, heat lamps, beach cruiser bikes, and similar items.
The truck toured central London for a week in early February. Visitors who entered the truck were encouraged to take a “selfie” on lounge chairs in front of the Newport Beach coastal scene and tag the photo. The Picture Perfect sweepstakes included a dream vacation to Newport Beach.
Representatives from the Newport Beach Film Festival also made the trip, timed to coincide with the British BAFTA awards.
This winter, Visit Newport Beach launched its largest-ever international marketing effort in the U.K. Dubbed “Visit Newport Beach U.K. Holiday,” the
campaign was again timed to coincide with the BAFTA awards.
According to Visit Newport Beach, this year’s campaign had a multi-pronged mission:
- Incentivize tour operators to book Newport Beach for their client’s holidays.
- Generate awareness and promote leisure travel to Newport Beach among the consumer audience in the U.K.
- Celebrate one of the leading lifestyle film festivals in the United States – Newport Beach Film Festival – and its notoriety to the Global Cinema industry
- Encourage U.K. filmmakers to submit their films and participate in the U.K. Spotlight that will take place on the second night of the Newport Beach Film Festival, which runs April 21-28.
To reach these audiences and create awareness of Newport Beach, Visit Newport Beach and Newport Beach Film Festival partnered with international entertainment retailer hmv, the luxury Curzon Cinemas brand, and Screen International.
Visit Newport Beach ran commercials in cinemas across London and in the busy intersection of Piccadilly Circus.
To complete the “Visit Newport Beach U.K. Holiday” campaign, a red-carpet event was held Feb. 11 at the Bulgari Hotel in London. Jared Harris, actor, and ambassador for the Newport Beach Film Festival, joined Gregg Schwenk, president and CEO of the Newport Beach Film Festival, and Visit Newport Beach representatives in recognizing the film “Brooklyn” for outstanding achievement in Global Cinema, along with Saoirse Ronan for Best Actress.
“Visiting the U.K. allows us the opportunity to speak directly to the consumer, as well as travel agents who plan visits to the U.S. and Newport Beach each year,” said Gary Sherwin, president & CEO of Newport Beach & Company. “Every year we welcome more visitors from the U.K. and hope they tell their friends and family, and plan another visit to our charming coastal destination.”