Tourism Ireland launched Irish-themed Facebook game
Tourism Ireland is hoping to exploit the phenomenal popularity of social networks in the weeks ahead by convincing more than 100,000 people to play an Irish-themed Facebook game which it launched on St Patrick’s Day.
The Ireland Town game allows Facebook users to create an “idyllic town in Ireland” with the help of a virtual tour guide called Sally. Once they have Irish utopia created, Facebook users can then explore iconic sites and attractions around the country without leaving their couches.
After certain challenges are completed, players can progress to the next level of the game and those who make it through all the levels will be in with a chance of winning a real world prize of a holiday to Ireland.
Tourism Ireland is hoping that playing the game will bring the Irish holiday experience to life for potential visitors – albeit without the rain – and they will be tempted to swap the virtual for the real and come to Ireland to spend hard cash in the months ahead.
Fans can progress faster if they convince their friends on Facebook to sign up and the tourism authority has expressed the hope that “the incredible viral effect of social games” will see up to 100,000 people playing Ireland Town over the coming weeks.
It is aiming to ape games like FarmVille and CityVille which are hugely popular with Facebook users with nearly a quarter of users in the US and Britain playing social games at least once a week.
“It is a unique promotional tool and a first, as no other national tourist board had done this before,” said Mark Henry, Tourism Ireland’s central marketing director.
Visit Britain launches Facebook app targeting Generation Y travelers
Tourism body VisitBritain has launched a Facebook app targeting Generation Y travelers encouraging them to visit the UK via a personal treasure hunt that takes place on the social network.
VisitBritain has partnered with STA Travel, Travel CUTS and Transat Holidays to launch the app, called Unite the Invite, which is only available to Facebook users in America, Canada, Australia and New Zealand.
Users are then given a virtual invite to the UK, which is split between themselves and their “match”. Users then post the picture of their ‘match’ on their wall, and ask their Facebook friends to share the picture in order to try to find their competition partner through the social networking site.
The fastest pair to find each other will win a trip to London, Manchester, Liverpool, Glasgow, Edinburgh or Cardiff.
Laurence Bresh, director of marketing, VisitBritian, said: “The idea that we’re all connected by six degrees of separation has intrigued people for generations.”
“This campaign attempts to prove that theory. And, to our knowledge, no other tourist board or travel agency has taken this approach to engage students and young professionals.”
Tourism Australia and Quiksilver launch Facebook competition
Tourism Australia and Quiksilver have announced that they have launched a Facebook contest, “Surf, Sun and Social Networking in Australia,” that will send one lucky winner to Australia to be the official blogger for the 2012 Quiksilver Pro Gold Coast.
Beginning March 14 and ending April 8 contestants will have the opportunity to upload their best adventure photo to either Facebook.com/AustraliaWorkandPlay or Facebook.com/Quiksilver and describe in 100 words or less what they think is the best adventure Down Under. Whether it’s hiking in search of wildlife, on a quest for the perfect break, or discovering a new world underwater, Australia’s got it all. And for those who aren’t familiar with Aussie adventures, they can get inspired by visiting Australia.com or Quiksilver.com. The winner will be determined by who has the most “likes” at the end of the contest period.
“There’s nothing like an Australian adventure,” said Daryl Hudson, vice president, the Americas for Tourism Australia. “From our iconic beaches, to our world-class cities and of course our native wildlife, the winning blogger will be on the front lines of some amazing experiences.”
The winner will receive a two-week trip to Australia including round-trip international economy airfare from Los Angeles, Dallas, San Francisco, or New York to Australia; one week in Queensland attending and blogging from the 2012 Quiksilver Pro, and vacation and blogging for one week in another Australian state of their choice.
“The Quiksilver Pro Gold Coast is the premier surf event in all of Australia and the kick-off to the world tour every year,” said Eddie Anaya, Marketing Director of Quiksilver. “It’s exciting to partner with Tourism Australia to offer one of our fans a behind the scenes experience where they get to blog and rub elbows with the best surfers in the world at one of Australia’s legendary surf breaks – Snapper Rocks.”