Nobody would probably dispute that the last couple of years have been difficult ones for many holiday home owners – particularly those in the UK.
Those with holiday let mortgages and associated costs, have in many areas been hit hard by certainly two and arguably three poor summer weather periods which have badly affected visitor numbers to different areas of the UK.
However, some regions, such as Suffolk, claim to have had success in maintaining or even increasing visitor numbers through innovative advertising.
Of course, advertising is always controversial and it can sometimes be difficult to quantify the exact positive impact of a campaign on holiday property lets etc.
However, in this case, although there remain elements of controversy about the campaign, it does seem to have been successful in driving increased traffic to the region.
This has long been a goal for many people in the UK holiday and leisure industry. This country is never likely to be blessed with predictable Mediterranean-style weather and as a result, it needs to put stress on its unique attractions such as history, countryside, culture, entertainment and so on.
What makes this particular campaign interesting is that it seems to have been based around the use of social media. In circumstances where advertising campaigns themselves can be controversial, concentrating very much on this one channel may be even more so.
Yet we live in times where competition for holiday traffic is intense, both domestically and particularly internationally. As such, it would seem intuitively unwise to neglect one of the fastest growing areas of information dissemination in our modern society.
As large sections of our commerce and industry increasingly use these new technology channels to advertise their wares, it might be sensible for the holiday industry to do likewise.
The opportunities for regions and even perhaps individual holiday home owners to talk-up UK holidays might be helped by a number of factors.
For example, for much of this year to date the pound Sterling has deteriorated against the Euro. That means that many things on the continent that were, at one time, cost-attractive to British holiday makers, are looking increasingly less so as their pound buys fewer and fewer euros.
It’s also the case that this summer’s generally poor weather, excluding the recent two-week heat wave, has also affected much of northern and central Europe. So, many Britons who headed into traditional French, Belgian, Dutch and German holiday destinations have returned very disappointed having been rained-out.
Of course, advertising and publicity should always be positive not negative. Even so, some of those old casual assumptions about the continent being cheaper and having guaranteed better weather, might not be quite as assured anymore given changing weather patterns – at least north of the Mediterranean area.
So, perhaps a little focus on the positive attractions of an area in the UK and a little on some of the ways in which we might win over the continent might bring some of those holidaymakers back.
Now if your holiday home is overseas, then you’ll be thinking entirely differently!