September 2018

With the kids back at school, you might expect a town to be quiet, but not Cheltenham. September was alive with the Heritage Open Days Initiative showcasing many of the gorgeous, normally off-limit buildings in the town, and of course The Cheltenham Paint Festival which saw more than 120 artists add pieces to our bare walls. Here’s a brief summary of what we got up to in September…

  • Supported a visit from The Sunday Times to include Cheltenham as a Great British Break. The article shone a spotlight on the town and included many of the businesses that we recommended to the journalist: The Holst Museum, The Wilson Art Gallery & Museum, The Cheltenham Paint Festival, Cheltenham Literature Festival, Bodega, The Union Project, Rechercher, Malone’s Vintage, The Coconut Tree, Ginger & Garlic, Le Champignon Sauvage, The Clarance Social, Baker & Graze, No.131, The Bradley and of course the general town including Pittville Park and The Pump Rooms, and Montpellier Walk and The Caryatids. You can read the article on The Sunday Times website here…
  • We kicked off the Christmas promotional campaign, including press releases to local press, regional press and travel trade contacts with the key dates for Christmas events and incentives for shopping. Christmas will be a huge campaign for Cheltenham as we invite, advertise, entice and curate the best of the town to maximise on peak sales patterns.
  • Put together press trips for more than 20 journalists and bloggers who will be in town in October. The itineraries are set and we have included as many members as possible in the different visits to garner maximum attention in the town. More details will be revealed in October so watch this space!
  • Worked with BBC Radio Gloucestershire to showcase Cheltenham and the businesses we have here. Interviews with Kelly Ballard from Marketing Cheltenham, plus a few of the businesses in the town created a lovely overview.
  • Worked with a film location scout to identify potential buildings in the town that can be used for filming in a popular children’s sequel, due for release next year. Watch this space…
  • Presentation to Birmingham University Lecturers to talk about the strategic plans and visions for Marketing Cheltenham. This also supported the lecturers with applying the theory to the practical, and Cheltenham was picked as a prime example of a growing destination strategy.
  • Supported Cheltenham Festivals to help their visitors with travel, and help advise the journalists they bring to the town. Our work included an update of the ‘getting to Cheltenham’ section of the Festivals website, the addition of a ‘getting around Cheltenham’ section, an update to the guides for accommodation, food and drink and parking, content for the ‘plan your visit’ email to visitors and content to go in journalist press packs. This content is seen by thousands of visitors and more than 30 journalists, showcasing the town to its best potential.
  • Revitalised our partnership with National Express to improve the accessibility of the town and the ease of online booking. We’ve also helped to update the National Express website with upcoming events in the town, and a new town guide will also be published on their site in due course.
  • Updated the strategy for the Visit Cheltenham website. The original content strategy was devised in November 2017 to cover the relaunch of the website and six months of content delivery thereafter. Six months on from launch, it has now been updated to refocus the strategy for the next twelve months. Based on current site performance, a tranche of new content is in the pipeline along with significant updates to encourage and increase online bookings, and some design and usability updates to improve the user experience.
  • In direct response to member feedback, particularly hotels, we have worked with CJP Cotswold Tours to make available ‘last minute’ Cotswold Tours. Many of the existing town and Cotswold tours are fully booked weeks in advance, so these new flexible tours will offer guests the chance to explore the local area with no more than 24 hours prior booking. You can read more about the initiative here…
  • Our partners, The Cheltenham BID and The Cheltenham Trust have been hard at work developing a new town trail ‘Hidden Cheltenham’ which showcases some of the lesser-known stories of the town. We have supported with the launch, with social media, newsletter content and blogs. This is a fabulous addition to the town and you can read more about it here…
  • Started initial discussions with interested stakeholders regarding a food initiative to enhance the town’s reputation as a foodie destination. There are lots of exciting ideas in the pipeline and we will be widening the discussion to include more businesses in due course.
  • Added additional content to the Visit Cheltenham website including dedicated pages for Halloween, Bonfire Night and New Year. The stats for the website are also in and it is performing brilliantly, including:
    • over 27,000 unique users in September
    • an uplift of 19.58% in visitors to the site when compared with 2017
    • 83,810 page views, up 34.96% since last year
  • Continued to build the Visit Cheltenham social media channels (which were revamped in April), including:
    • 28 pieces of content curated and distributed via the Visit Cheltenham blog
    • reaching 34,000 people via Twitter
    • reaching 15,000 people via Facebook, gaining 4,625 individual engagements on our posts
    • reaching nearly 32,151 people via Instagram
  • We have also reviewed the performance of the website and content strategy as a whole since it launched in April 2018 and there are some pretty big successes which you can see in our infographic here…
  • Securing press coverage of Cheltenham via our support of journalists which reached 854,603 people in September
  • Welcomed our new members on board including The Jaguar Landrover Experience at Eastnor, The Bacon Theatre, Cote, Lumiere, Hotel du Vin, No.8 Cheltenham, The Coconut Tree, CJP Cotswold Tours, Cheltenham Science Group, The Looking Glass and of course, John Lewis.

Don’t forget, members are now eligible to join our private Facebook Group where we share news and opportunities as soon as they become available…

If you would like to benefit from our work and receive our regular updates of opportunities, become a member…